Intoduction to Trail Riding

Duncan Travel Blog

 › entry 2 of 3 › view all entries
Back at the ranch with Julupae and his owner Al Mercer.

For nearly 25 years I have been afraid of horses.  However I figured that if I could cope with my recent encounters with black bears, then I should be able to get over my fear of horses. So Simon, my old school chum Ruth and I headed out to the Circle M ranch not that far from Duncan, BC. There we meet the owner of the ranch Al Mercer who asks if we have much riding experience. I tell him that, a) I have never riden a horse before, and b) that i'm scared of horses. I am relieved that Al is very understanding and tells me not to worry because he has just the right horse for me.

The horses were already to go and Ruth was first up on Kota ? She came to Circle M as a rescue horse and they think that her name is short for Dakota. Simon was next up on Rustler a tall black horse who came to circle M after appearing in the film Dr. Doolittle III. Finally it's my turn to be  introduced to my horse a stocky Appaloosa cross called Jalupae.

We have decided to do a 1 hour circular trail, just in case I really hate it. Al tells us me not to worry and promises that won't be able to stop smiling when we get back. So we set off on a short road, Al is at the front on his trusty steed Casper, followed closely by me on Jalupae,  followed someway back by Simon and Ruth on Rustler and Kota.

It's only a few minutes before we are making our way through a forest. Al believes that a trail ride, no matter how short should be on a trail, and that a ride through a wood is alot nicer than one on a wide dusty track that other ranches offer. Fortunately Jalupae seems to know exactly what he's supposed to be doing, so all that I had to do was relax and have a good time, with  Al pointing out things of interest to me. We hadn't been riding for long when a whole herd of elk (including babies crossed right in front of our path), it was a spectacular sight.

Simon's horse Rustler needed a bit more encouragement, and Ruth's horse Kota insisted on walking round the puddles. Al says that Kota will go through water when she has to, but not when she can avoid it.

All too soon the hour was up and we were back at the Ranch. Unfortunately we didn't make it back to Circle M for a longer ride before we left Vancouver Island. However thanks to Al and Julapae I wont be put off horse-riding ever again.

Circle M trail rides can be found at


Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!
Back at the ranch with Julupae and…
Back at the ranch with Julupae an…
photo by: row-zzzzz