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How to Be Well Prepared for Summer Trail Riding Adventures
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How to Be Well Prepared for Summer Trail Riding Adventures

As mother nature finally begins defrosting and springtime arrives with that long-awaited sunshine, you (and your horse!) have likely already begun feeling that itch to get out and enjoy your first summer camping trip. While the warmer months seem endless right now, it’s important to keep in mind that summer often passes by in a flash, and fitting in all your trail riding and camping adventures can be challenging. Luckily, being adequately prepared for all your trips is a great way to ensure that you and horse can take full advantage of everything the summer has to offer without wasting any precious time or money.

Whether you plan on exploring a national park via horseback, finding the perfect camping spot for your RV and trailer, or backpacking through the Rocky Mountains, there are several factors to always consider. Planning for various weathers and securing the right shelter is vital. Making sure you have packed the right equipment is the first step for any smart rider and can help you handle any surprises that might pop up along the way.

Early Birds:

If you find that you’re too eager to wait until summer is in full swing before heading out, you need to be extra aware of the weather. Making sure both you and your horse have the right foot gear, clothing, and sleeping equipment is crucial early in the season. Getting caught unprepared in a storm or unexpected temperatures can be deadly — especially at night.

As the experts at MooseJaw explain, “make sure you take into account what season it currently is and what season you'll be ending your trip in. Just because you head out on a bright spring morning doesn't mean you'll be returning before the sweltering heat of summer. You'll need to choose a sleeping bag that can keep you warm at the lowest temperature you'll be meeting.”

Whether in a tent, RV, or under the stars, it’s worth investing in a multi-functional sleeping bag, especially if you enjoy trail riding and camping throughout each season. And of course, it doesn’t hurt to apply this rule of thumb to your horse. If you have the capability, bringing along a lightweight rug can offer waterproof, yet breathable protection for your companion but still provide an extra layer of warmth should the temperatures drop.

Comfortable and Functional:

When summer finally does hit, the temperature can be easier to predict, but it’ll still be important to secure the right gear for whatever trail you take. It might also not hurt to splurge on comfort, especially if you prefer tent or barebones camping. There are a lot of travel pillows on the market, like this one by the sleeping experts at Leesa that serves both as your typical everyday pillow but also includes a removable insert that can function as your travel pillow. It also offers a restorative calming and cooling nature that feels cooler to the touch, which is a treat in the sweltering heat of summer. Travel pillows are easy to pack and can provide an added level of comfort at night, meaning better sleep, which will hopefully give you even more energy throughout the day as you and your companions explore.

RV travel is a great option for those who enjoy the comforts of home while still having the freedom to explore mother nature’s playground with your horse crew. With that in mind, if RV travel seems more your style it’s important to have two checklists: one for before you leave, and one when you arrive back home. Before you head off to a national park or your favorite campsite, experts at Collier RV recommend packing a few essentials:

  • First-aid kit and fire extinguisher
  • Extra fuel for propane or gas-powered cooking, if you have a compatible stove.
  • Extra dry clothes for everyone, rain or snow.
  • Ample food for one extra day of travel, just in case.
  • Gear for activities. This includes fishing, skiing, wakeboarding or just relaxing.
  • Cameras and waste bags. Take only pictures and leave only footprints.

Considering that RVs offer a lot more storage than your average tent or backpack, you will have a lot more wiggle room to stock up on important items for both you and your horse. It’s equally important to have a checklist for after the season is over as well. Having a storage preparation checklist for your RV ensures it will be properly stowed away until next year’s adventures.

As the days get hotter, mother nature presents more beautiful weather, longer days, and the temptation to load up and find a new adventure. Whether you’re a trail riding rookie or veteran, it’s always worth your time to take and prepare all the necessary precautions to keep you and your horse safe. Pick a new national park to visit or invite friends to your secret camping spot — and, of course, enjoy the summer while it’s still here.

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  1. Dressage junky
    I'm afraid this seems a lot more like an ad for RV's than a helpful preparation article on summer trail riding. Where's the info on what to take with you for the horse? Or how to prepare? (bug spray, properly fitting tack, small first aid kit, hoof pick, sunscreen for the rider, etc)

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