Yes! But you will need to provide your own childcare. Usually family members trade off riding and childcare and some families bring a nanny along. The 5 and under set have a ball playing around the ranch buildings and their parents have plenty of support to make things feel like home away from home. Feel free to ask all your questions – we know that traveling with youngsters is a project and we hope to make it is as easy as possible for you!
What is the riding age for kids?Mary2019-11-12T01:09:31+00:00
All riders must be an honest 6 or older. With this in mind, there is no charge for kids 5 and under. Occasionally people ask whether their young person may ride with them on the adult’s horse, and the answer is no — we don’t consider this a safe practice.
Should parents go on rides with kids?Mary2018-06-19T02:02:33+00:00
We find that often families enjoy a ride or two together at the beginning of the week and then enjoy separating to do different things. Safety and supervision wise, it is critical that kids pay attention to and respect the guide and sometimes kids learn better when they can focus primarily on the guide. Also, kids rides are different than adult rides — kids love to trot (a bouncier gate often not favored by adults), kids like to get off their horses and play and loping rides for kids are often at a different pace than adult rides.
How do family cabin setups work?Mary2018-06-19T02:03:58+00:00
Elkhorn cabins are characterized as either single or double cabins, and among the double cabins there are a number of larger cabins that have the size and flexibility to be family cabins. In most cases, the living room of the cabin either has a day bed or the capacity for an extra bed to be added. Another option is for families with older children or teens to spread out between two side-by-side cabins. When we check availability for you, we discuss various options.
We do not allow our guests to wear spurs. While we realize that you may be an experienced rider who knows how to use them properly, many other guests do not and we feel it is important to be consistent.
What about cowboy hats?Mary2018-06-19T02:05:27+00:00
Wearing a cowboy hat is a fun and practical part of Elkhorn life, and there are many character filled hats in the loaning closet. All hats must be connected to you, as a flying hat is a safety hazard! If you bring your own, we will ask you to add a string. For ball caps, we sell some hat lanyards emblazoned with Elkhorn Ranch that have clips on either end.
Shoes to wear for riding – cowboy boots!Mary2018-06-19T02:06:04+00:00
Western style cowboy boots are critical for safety while riding. All Elkhorn Ranch riders wear smooth sole boots with a heel and no laces. Exceptions are granted only for medical reasons, and with advance notice. Many boots are available for borrowing at the office lending closet up to size 14.
Can I wear my own riding boots, that aren’t cowboy boots?Mary2018-06-19T02:06:41+00:00
If the boot slips on, has a heel and moth sole and no laces it may work. English riding boots that are form fitted do not pull off, so think about that issue as you assess your foot ware with Elkhorn in mind. We encourage you to talk with us about your boots ahead of time and then show them to us upon arrival. We are very firm about assuring that boots meet our definition of safe, and if we are not comfortable with your boots we will ask you to borrow cowboy boots no matter how new or special they are to you.
Why do you require cowboy boots?Mary2018-06-19T02:07:22+00:00
In the event of a fall, it is possible for the rider’s foot to go through the saddle stirrup (the part of the saddle where you place your feet) and get caught, which can result in the rider being dragged by the horse instead of separating from the horse – thus compounding an already bad safety situation. Having the rider’s foot slip out of the boot is a critical safety feature (hence no laces). The boot’s heel prevents the foot from slipping through the stirrup and the smooth sole further reduces the chance of the boot getting stuck in the stirrup. The height of a cowboy boot and its tendency to protect your ankle and lower leg from chafing is a good comfort feature, but not an essential safety feature.
What if the shape of my foot or a medical situation makes it impossible to wear a cowboy boot?Mary2018-06-19T02:08:08+00:00