Tag Archives: travel

mini horse at Dunville Fall Fair 2018, Dunville, Ontario

Mini Horses and Country Fall Fairs. What’s not to love?

Country fall fairs are in full swing and what better place to indulge a deep-fried guilty pleasure and see many horses – sometimes. Farm animals definitely, but some fairs have more room for horse events than others.

A Year of Heroes #6: Old Friends Thoroughbred Retirement, Lexington, KY

“Who would object to a race horse retirement sanctuary?” I ask during a tour of Old Friends, a thoroughbred retirement farm near Lexington, Kentucky.  (It’s not far from the Kentucky Horse Park.) “No one thought it was possible,” the guide tells me. The idea of Old Friends – a farm where retired racehorses, famous or […]

horse at Hollandsche Manege Riding School in Amsterdam, Holland

Travel Amsterdam: High Tea at The Hollandsche Manege – Housing Horses Downtown

Horses aren’t necessarily top of mind when you think Amsterdam. But here I am, in the Netherlands, walking through a European-style subdivision past rows of narrow Brownstone-style contemporary homes looking for a riding stable. Yes, a stable. In a subdivision. I stop and ask a woman pushing a stroller along the sidewalk: “I think I’m […]

Downton Abbey Equine Costume horsetrotting.net

Travel Nashville: Side-saddle Fashion at Cheekwood and beyond

“It’s all about the gear,” someone said as I shopped for, well … riding clothing at The Royal Winter Fair in Toronto last fall. Granted, I can’t get enough horse embossed hoodies, jackets, coats, bags and boots. There’s something classic about equestrian style and, thanks to the tights-as-pants trend, it’s easy to pull off in […]

donkey at Donkey Sanctuary of Canada horsetrotting.net

A Year of Heros #5: Donkey Sanctuary of Canada

“Ownership is essential,” Lesley Bayne, director of the Donkey Sanctuary of Canada (DSC) says about equine rescue. “We don’t adopt animals out because you never know what happens to them,” she says. The Donkey Sanctuary of Canada located in Puslinch, Ontario about one-hour west of Toronto, does indefinitely foster out several of the donkeys and […]

kissing a horse on horsetrotting.net

Ring in the New Year! Kiss a Horse (or bake treats)

Happy New Year! I kissed a horse and I liked it. Ok, I do that all the time. New Years’ Eve, no exception. Clearly, in this photo I’m not shivering in negative 20 degree Celsius winter temperatures in Ontario, Canada. In this photo, I’m at the Farmer’s Pantry pick-your-own-apple farm (last fall) located in Clarksburg, […]

Fall Fair MIniature Horse Judging Competition

Miniature Horse Showing: Fall Fair Competitions Demystified Part II

What are the judges looking for while kids and adults walk their minis into the ring then stand, for what seems like days, waiting for the announcer call their numbers?

Horse jumping competition at the Norfolk County Fair, Simcoe, Ontario

Loving the Fall Trifecta: Horses, Country Fairs, and more Horses

Thursday at the Norfolk Fair, it’s all about the jumping, with some heavy hitch, wagon and junior single-horse hitch driving competitions happening nearby. After 11 am, hordes of school kids flood into the fair to see the livestock, biggest pumpkin competition and poultry barn – including a new category: rainbow chickens.

Binbrook Fall Fair Heavy Horse Hitching Class 2017

Horsetrotting’s Top Five Fall (Horse) Fairs in 2017

Giddy Up! It’s Fall Fair Season. And what’s a fall fair without horses? An afternoon at the 163rd Binbrook Fair started my Ontario Fall Fair Tour off last weekend – this year I’ve booked one a weekend and I’m determined to get to each bright and early to catch all the horse shows. (No horse show? […]

Balloon outside the Paris Hotel in Las Vegas advertising Circus 1903 - horsetrotting

War Horse goes to the circus – Circus 1903 in Las Vegas, NV

There’s something charming about classic circus acts. I’d say nostalgic, but nostalgia requires some memory of the original event and the early 20th century predates even me. Everything I know about the classic circus – thick facial hair, puffy trousers, and women in white tights – is through photos, films and now Circus 1903: The […]

Horse at Conestoga River Horse Adventures, Waterloo, Ontario

Travel Waterloo, ON: Mantracker, heart pounding horse adventure

On the eve of your 50th birthday, do something that scares you. Something that makes your heart beat out of your chest while holding your breath. I did and big surprise, it involved horses. Imagine running on foot through bushes, hiding in tall grass and making a break for it through the woods as oilskin-coat-clad […]

Winston bowing at Wampee Stables, North Myrtle Beach

Travel Myrtle Beach, SC: A Mid-summer Morning’s Dream Ride at Wampee Stables

Wampee Stables is all about trail riding. Actually, it’s all about the horses that just happened to do trail rides, and only trail rides. At this farm, it’s like saddling up at a friend’s house – a friend who considers his horses family. “Sadie is the only horse here that gets this excited about treats,” […]

Travel Louisville, KY: Don’t bet? No problem. Churchill Downs still delivers, especially for horse lovers.

I didn’t know much about thoroughbred racing before I went to Louisville, Kentucky. One day in Derby City and I do now. Churchill Downs historic walking tours run year round, expect on Kentucky Derby weekend when about 160,000 people flood this famous racetrack with a seating capacity of 60,000. Where do the other 100,000 people […]

Barns and Backside Tour Derby Week Churchill Downs Louisville, KY

Travel Louisville, KY: Barns and Backside Tour Electric During Derby Week

Always Dreaming might have won the 143rd Kentucky Derby on Saturday, May 6, 2017 taking home approximately 1.6 million dollars in prize money, but I won too accidentally ending up in Louisville, Kentucky the first two days of Derby Week. Of course, like millions of others, I was rooting for Patch, a one-eyed horse and […]

Horse at Can-Am All Breeds Equine Expo

How to Photograph your horse or What we learned at the Can-Am All Breeds Equine Expo Part II

“This is good to know,” the woman standing in front of me turned around and said, “especially if you’re selling a horse.” An image is worth a thousand words apparently. Or in this case, maybe an extra thousand dollars if you get the photo right. I’m not selling a horse, but I do spend time […]

Can-Am All Breeds Equine Expo 2017 horse

What’s Happening in Markham? The Can-Am All Breeds Equine Expo 2017

If three days of horses, horse people, horse stuff, horse clinics and two evening extravaganzas sounds like heaven, then I’ve got your Nirvana: The Can-Am All Breeds Equine Expo at the Markham Fairgrounds in Markham, Ontario, Canada, a 30-minute drive from Toronto. Why I haven’t attended before, I don’t know. However, I spent the entire […]

Travel Lexington, KY: Equine Worship at The Kentucky Horse Park

If you doubt the Kentucky Horse Park’s reverence for all things equine (especially race horses) look up … way up. Near the park’s entrance stands the looming full-size bronze statue of Man O’ War, on a stone base surrounded by a circular garden and narrow water motte. To photograph the statue of this great racer, […]

Riding at the Biltmore Estates horsetrotting.net

Travel Asheville, NC: Ride like a Vanderbilt at the Biltmore

“Step on the scale,” Pam says to me at the Biltmore Estates House and Garden Equestrian Center in Asheville, North Carolina. Riding publications voted this 8,000-acre private historical property one of the best places to ride in the U.S. – especially if you own your own horse. In North Carolina, that’s more people than you […]

2017 – Year of the Horse for Canadian Equine Fans (or a disconcerting milestone…)

Happy New Year! 2017 marks an important milestone in Canada’s history: it’s the country’s 150th anniversary. And horses (at least for me) are a big part of this celebration. That’s right: the country I call home is younger than most of Europe’s historic hotels (and some stables), but the 1867 establishment of confederation marks Canada’s […]

Heavy Horse Hitching – Fall Fair Competitions Demystified Part 1

Heavy Horse Hitching competitions are something I know nothing about, except that those who participate are dedicated. Really dedicated. You have to love driving a team of draft horse around a ring for about 15 minutes in order to transport several large draft horses and a full sized wagon big enough to move the contents […]