The weather has been perfect for some trail riding lately, and you’ll want to get out and enjoy the trails before the approaching winter. Before you head out on the trails, though, make sure that you’re familiar with these six trail riding safety tips.
Bring a Buddy
It’s always safer to trail ride with a buddy along. Having another person with you means that there will be someone to get help if an accident happens. Plus, it’s fun to have someone to talk to. Try to plan trail rides with your friends and with other boarders at your barn. It may take a little scheduling, but is a safer option than heading out alone.
Tell Someone Where You’re Headed
Regardless of whether you’re riding out alone or are riding with a buddy, be sure to tell someone back home or at the barn where you’re headed. Be as specific about the trail that you’re going to follow as possible, and give an estimated time for your return. If you don’t return home when expected, someone will be aware of your general area and will be able to send help.
Carry a Cell Phone On Your Body
While many riders carry cell phones on the trail, they don’t always carry them on their bodies. Many riders slip cell phones into their trail bags, but there’s a problem with this method – if you and your horse are separated, then you won’t have your cell phone, either. Be sure to carry your phone directly on your body.
Pack a Trail Kit
Pack a trail kit of necessities like a hoof pick, a first-aid kit, and an extra lead rope and always carry it with you on trails. It’s easiest to leave this kit in your saddle bags so it’s always ready to go when you go trail riding.
Familiarize Yourself With Hunting Season
If you’ll be riding in an area where hunting is permitted, then familiarize yourself with the seasons when hunting is allowed. If you decide to go riding during a hunting season, then make sure to outfit yourself and your horse in blaze orange. It’s a good idea to put a bell on your horse’s saddle and to talk loudly with your buddy as you ride.
Watch the Weather
You don’t want to get caught out in the woods during a thunderstorm, so be sure to carefully check the weather forecast before you head out on a trail. It’s also a good idea to set your cell phone to receive weather alerts in case the forecast changes while you’re out riding.
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Do you have any trail riding safety tips to add to this list? Let us know in the comments below!