Please come with a “go with the flow” mindset.
Relax and enjoy the beauty and nature of The Ranch.
Cedar Valley Stables
What are your hours?
1. We start our day at 7:00am with horses, feeding, grooming & saddling.
2. Depending on weather, number of staff, and scheduled rides:
- Our spring riding hours: (April - May) 10:00am – 2:00pm
- Our summer riding hours: (June – Aug.) 9:00am – 12:00pm
- Our fall riding hours: (Sep. – Mid Nov.) 10:00am – 2:00pm
3. Our hours may vary due to weather (rain – heat - cold).
4. We schedule preferably morning to afternoon.
- We won’t start the day with a small group in the late afternoon since our day starts at 7:00 a.m.
Why are reservations required?
1. You can call 7 days a week, 8:00am – 8:00pm. This is a landline at our home, at times we are outside or gone. Please leave a message if no one answers and we will get back to you.
2. You can call months in advance up to the morning of the day you wish to ride.
3. If you are calling on the day you wish to ride please call early to allow for drive time and for a possible opening.
- Please arrive at least 15 min before your scheduled ride.
- We cannot guarantee there will be any openings available if you call the same day you want to ride.
4. We need to know how many staff is needed to accommodate our day.
5. If we don’t have anyone scheduled we either won’t open for the day or we will close earlier than the listed hours.
Do you take credit/debit?
No, we only take cash or check.
What do I need to wear?
1. It’s best to wear jeans or long pants.
2. Closed toed shoes, preferably boots with a ½” -1” heel, or tennis shoes.
- sandals, flip flops or shorts are not recommended
How old do you have to be to go on trail rides? How old to attend girl’s horse camp?
1. At least 8 years old for trail rides.
2. 10 years old for horse camp.
Why can’t we ride double with our younger children?
1. The liability is too high since there is a greater risk of injury to both horse and rider.
2. The saddles we own aren’t designed for 2 people.
3. Having a second body on the horse makes the balance of the rider not centered and can throw the horse off balance.
4. It can be very uncomfortable for both riders for an hour long ride.
Why is there a weight limit?
This has always been a sensitive issue as no one wants to admit to being overweight. For the safety of our horses and our customers we have to reserve strict guidelines.
1. We have minimal horses that can carry heavier weights.
2. We always ask if anyone in your group is close to or over 240lbs.
- If yes, what is the weight amount?
3. We then ask if they are of athletic build
- (as in: tall and muscular, since muscle is denser than fat.) Or if they are a person that struggles to hold their own weight while
performing an activity that requires a great deal of balance.
- No matter the build we still must see the person to completely determine if they will be able to ride, as we have to look out for the lifetime
wellbeing of our horses.
4. “The U.S. Cavalry Manual of Horse Management recommends that a rider and gear (tack) weigh no more than 20% of the horse’s weight”
(Potter, 2014, pg.53) Research done by Ohio State University in 2008 measured stress and soreness indicators in horses during exercise
carrying 15, 20, 25, and 30% of the horse’s body weight. The horses were put through 45 min. workouts to replicate and average riding
lesson. The researchers found that muscle soreness and tightness increased significantly at 25 and 30%. The horses carrying 25-30% had
elevated heart rate, respiration and temperature. For those carrying 15-20%, they appeared to verify the old Cavalry guidelines. (Potter,
For more information please refer to the article in Horse Illustrated below:
*Potter, L., Ware, C. (ILL), (2014). Too Heavy to Ride?. Horse Illustrated, February, 52-56.
Do we have to have a guide?
- We have friendly, knowledgeable guides to ensure the safety of your group, and our horses. The guides have years
of experience working with and have learned each horse’s personality, along with also knowing the layout of our land.
Can we run the horses?
1. The definition of a trail ride, at a Livery Stable, is riding a horse in a single file line at a walk or sauntering pace.
2. Most people get the idea from watching TV and don’t realize that there are techniques you should know before going at any faster pace than
a walk or trot, (even a trot can throw you off balance).
3. Any faster movement than a walk is always at the guide’s discretion!
- The majority of our rides WILL BE WALK RIDES.
- Determining factors are: age, size, ability, weather, and how busy our day is.
- Some of our horses are very reliable and work every hour not just your hour.
Can you handle disabilities?
Please call to discuss the degree of disability.
If you call and we cannot accommodate your disability call Miracles in Motion located in Swisher, Iowa at 319-857-4141.
Why do you need height and weight for camp registration?
1. To accommodate stirrup length, we need a variety of heights in the same week of camp. As we get forms in we can monitor this to better
accommodate the children.
2. In order to allow a child to attend camp with a weight of 180 lbs. they can be no shorter than 5’6”. If you have any other concerns on height or
weight, please refer to a BMI chart.
3. Weight heavily impacts balance. We do more physical activity on horseback during camp than just a typical trail ride. If you have any further
questions please call and we can discuss them further.
Please remember we are not a fast food business. We work with live animals and, after seeing all riders, we have to set you up according to ability, size, and group size which can take more time than expected some days.