Saturday ยท July 8, 2023
Virginia: Top Horse Trails | July 2023
Author: Admin

Virginia is a haven for equestrians with its rolling landscapes, picturesque trails, and horse-friendly communities. Whether you are a seasoned rider or a beginner exploring the equestrian world, Virginia offers a wide array of trails that will take you on an unforgettable journey. Here are the top equestrian trails in Virginia:


1. Shenandoah National Park: Located in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Shenandoah National Park is a haven for nature enthusiasts and horse lovers. With over 500 miles of trails, equestrians can enjoy breathtaking views of the Shenandoah Valley, cascading waterfalls, and diverse wildlife. The Skyline Drive, accessible from various trailheads, offers stunning views and easy access to equestrian trails.


2. George Washington and Jefferson National Forests: Encompassing over 1.8 million acres, the George Washington and Jefferson National Forests are a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts. Horseback riders can explore a network of trails that wind through dense forests, babbling brooks, and open meadows. The Mount Rogers National Recreation Area, in particular, offers a variety of equestrian-friendly trails, including the Virginia Highlands Horse Trail, which spans over 73 miles.


3. New River Trail State Park: Stretching over 57 miles, the New River Trail State Park offers a scenic adventure for equestrians. Following an old railroad bed, the trail takes riders along the banks of the New River, the second oldest river in the world. Riders can take in breathtaking views of the river, lush forests, and vibrant wildflowers. The park provides equestrian campsites, watering stations, and plenty of parking facilities.


4. Grayson Highlands State Park: Known for its wild ponies, Grayson Highlands State Park is a must-visit destination for horse lovers. Located in southwestern Virginia, riders can explore the park's expansive network of trails that traverse blueberry fields, rolling highlands, and rocky outcrops. The park offers designated equestrian camping areas and ample trailer parking. Don't forget to snap a picture with the friendly wild ponies that wander freely throughout the park.


5. Elizabeth Furnace Recreation Area: Nestled in the scenic Shenandoah Valley, the Elizabeth Furnace Recreation Area offers a diverse range of equestrian trails. Riders can meander through hardwood forests, cross streams, and discover historical landmarks such as the Elizabeth Furnace ironworks ruins. The extensive trail network connects to the larger George Washington National Forest, providing endless opportunities to explore the great outdoors.


6. The Virginia Creeper Trail: Originally a railroad bed, the Virginia Creeper Trail has become a popular destination for hikers, cyclists, and horseback riders. Spanning 34 miles from Abingdon to Whitetop, this multi-use trail takes riders through picturesque farmland, quaint towns, and scenic woodlands. With gentle grades and stunning vistas, it's the perfect outing for equestrians of all skill levels.


Before embarking on your equestrian adventure, check local regulations, pack essential safety gear, and ensure your horse is adequately trained and fit for the terrain. Remember to respect nature, leave no trace, and enjoy the natural wonders Virginia has to offer. So saddle up, grab your reins, and get ready for an unforgettable equestrian experience in the beautiful state of Virginia.