Saturday, September 09, 2006

Sunset Ranch Dinner Ride

For my friend's 40th birthday, a group of 4 of us went to Sunset Ranch to go on one of their famous dinner rides. From their website,
Our most famous event is our Sunset Dinner Ride. It consists of a 90 minute ride through Griffith Park over to Burbank and to the delicious Viva Fresh Mexican Restaurant. After eating a great meal, enjoy a relaxing ride back through the park, under the moon and stars, arriving to the ranch no later then 10:30 pm. All rides are accompanied by an experienced wrangler.
They do these rides every night, but Friday is the only night when you can show up without a reservation. We left work at 3:30 PM so that we'd have a good chance at getting a spot on the ride before it booked up. Fortunately it all worked out and we were able to join the group of about 15 riders for the evening. The ride cost $60 a person + tips for the guides at the end.

This was my second time on a horse, the first being in Big Beara few years ago. I'm not a huge fan of horseback riding, but I'll go with the flow when others want to go. I don't completely trust animals so I get scared since, to me, the horse is the one in control. My horse on this ride was named Mouse. On the way to dinner, he was pretty slow and remained in the back of the group. On the way back, however, he transformed into a mighty mouse and wanted to race toward the front. He also would run up to the butt of another horse and give it a peck which was a cross between a kiss and a bite. Other people on the ride seemed to be getting annoyed at my horse saying "Watch out for the mouse bite!".

To control the horse, you are supposed to kick it to go faster, pull back on the reigns to slow down, and pull the reigns right or left to turn. Mouse obeyed the reigns, but never really responded to the kicking. Maybe I just wasn't kicking hard enough. Mouse would speed up when one of the guides came by making a clicking sound with her mouth.

The ride was a lot of fun and the views from the top of the Hollywood Hills were amazing. At different points we could see LA from downtown to the west side and on the valley side from Glendale to North Hollywood and beyond. The only annoying thing about the ride was that there was a lot of dust being kicked up by the horses. I recommend bringing or buying one of their $2 bandanas to wrap over your mouth so you don't inhale all the dust.

It is amazing how short I felt after dismounting a horse I've been on for 90 minutes. It was really wierd.

1 comment:

byaspan said...

That sounds like it would have been really funny to see. "Whoa mousie!"