Ellensburg, as well as surrounding Kittitas County, is located in some of the most unique and varied terrain in the Northwest. Because there are deserts, long stretches of valley, and mountain ranges, a horseback-riding enthusiast can experience a huge variety of riding locations.
One trail everyone, no matter the riding skill should try is the Palouse to Cascades State Park Trail. This former Chicago-Milwaukee-St. Paul-Pacific Railroad line runs through Washington State and beyond. It spans 110 miles within Washington, all perfect for riding. In Kittitas County there are several spots to get onto the trail, including the trailhead near Thorp, located just a few miles west of Ellensburg.
The trailhead is located right at the Thorp exit (Exit 101). In the northern portion of the county there are hundreds of miles of trails to ride throughout the Wenatchee National Forest, as well as southeast of the forest, in the Cle Elum, Roslyn, and Ronald areas. For more information about those areas, go to www.parks.wa.gov, www.fs.fed.us/r6/wenatchee, or to www.fs.fed.us/r6/mbs.
This ranch offers guided rides and lessons, hiking and biking groups, cabins, tent camping, a community dining area, overnight horse boarding and more. Lodges have amenities such as claw-foot tubs, wraparound porches, hot tubs and down comforters. Jeans, boots and helmets are required on rides and the ranch has a large assortment of children’s boots on hand.
High Country Outfitters
High Country Outfitters has several different riding programs, including ones for large groups, children, women only, overnight rides and more. Hard-soled shoes or heeled boots are required. Helmets are required for children and strongly recommended for adults. Visitors must bring camping gear. Indoor lodging is not offered, however large tents are available and meals are provided during rides. Classes on riding, yoga, wildflower identification, Dutch oven cooking, outdoor survival and more are offered at High Country Outfitters.
Spirit Therapeutic Riding Center
Spirit Therapeutic Riding Center’s mission statement is to provide equine-assisted activities to individuals with physical, emotional, and learning disabilities. We focus on capabilities not disabilities and promote independence.
If you are looking for an opportunity to get in the saddle, you have come to the right place! Three Peaks Outfitters offers you several trail riding options, from short 1 1/2 hour rides to full day wilderness trips.