Horses in LA

As one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world, Los Angeles is famed for it’s movie starts and great weather as opposed to area to enjoy horseback riding.

Los Angeles equestrian center is located in Rancho Equestrian District, Burbank; an area zoned to allow residents to keep horses on their property. The equestrian center houses over 500 horses and numerous world-class trainers operate out of the facility covering practically every equestrian discipline. With amenities such as the 3500 seat equidome, beautifully manicured grass arenas and exhibition rings the equestrian center attracts many competitors from far and wide to participate in their shows.

Surrounding the equestrian center many residents of Rancho have stalls and stables in their back yard. From here you can access the trails of Griffith Park,  a 4,300 acre municipal park located at the eastern end of the Santa Monica mountains.

My involvement with the equestrian community began over a year ago. After researching where you could ride in LA, I got in my car and drove to the Equestrian Center. Now I’m just a girl from the English countryside. The facility blew my mind; I had never seen so many horses in one spot. That day there was a show going on in some sort of western discipline of which I know nothing about! I found it fascinating.  I chatted to some of the spectators and they advised that I contacted the jumping trainers at the equestrian center so that I could get involved in the equestrian scene. At this point in time it had been several years since I had ridden but when I got home I cold called every jumping trainer in the equestrian center. Only one got back to me but before I knew it I was a working student at Martin McAllister Training; a Grand Prix level show jumping barn. I was riding showjumpers trained to a standard that I had never had the opportunity to ride before.

I stayed at Martin McAllister for about six months, working for a day in return for a lesson on one of their horses. On my lunch break I would eat at Vivas, a mexican restaurant at the entrance to the equestrian center on Riverside Drive. There I began talking to the locals and eventually was offered a horse to ride whenever I wanted. I stopped riding at the equestrian center in favor of riding Morgan, a grey ex-racehorse. Morgan is kept in his owner Annie’s back yard in Rancho with her other horse Agave. I love the freedom of being able to take him around Griffith Park. Riding in Los Angeles is truly amazing and a great contrast to my previous equestrian experiences in the UK.

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