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Valley of Rediscovery

Since its early days as a Spanish rancho, horses have been part of this North San Diego County town’s fabric. They still are — in exciting new ways.

By AUDREY PAVIA for the Horsetrader - February 19th, 2015

1502BwpcoverSAN MARCOS — Times are challenging for horse people in desireable places with natural beauty, accessiblity and a perfect climate. Competition for land and local government attention can be brutal as population increases while available property does not. Some California horsetowns are seeing a reduction in equine activities, and even less people owning horses within the community. But in the San Diego County town of San Marcos, horses still reign supreme.

One reason for San Marcos stability as a horse community is the dedication of horse people within the Twin Oaks Valley, the northernmost section of town. Equestrian properties line the nearly 10-mile long Twin Oaks Valley Road, and are thriving.

Dodging the bullet train

Horsepeople unite to fight new, proposed Lake View Terrace route

From Horsetrader staff reports - January 15th, 2015

Artist rendering of High Speed Rail crossing Big Tujunga Wash and proposed tunnel in Lake View Terrace.

Artist rendering of High Speed Rail crossing Big Tujunga Wash and proposed tunnel in Lake View Terrace.

Horsepeople in Lake View Terrace and surrounding areas have a few words for the State High Speed Rail Authority about a new proposed path for the futuristic 220-mph bullet train through their community: Not so fast.

Three alternative routes surfaced in December after an original plan for the leg from Palmdale to the Burbank airport, a 51-mile stretch along the Highway 14 corridor, was criticized by residents and officials. Called the East Corridor, the newest trio of alternative routes cuts through Lake View Terrace and would impact horse ownership throughout the San Fernando Valley. Further, the redirection of the Highway 14 route would require a 35-mile tunneling beneath the San Gabriel Mountains and the Angeles National Forest, with the bullet train screaming from a tunnel and over the Tujunga Wash, an equestrian paradise.

Who are the Movers & Shapers of your horse community?

Volunteers who take the reins and look ahead guide futures

From staff reports - January 1st, 2015

1501AwpcoverWhen Lynn Brown first took to the Griffith trails on horseback, the daughter of a Texas rancher saw a piece of half-buried steel rebar sticking up from the path, and she called the City of Los Angeles. They fixed it.

Twenty years later, Brown remains vigilant – and effective. Her view has expanded beyond her beloved local trails, as she now is Vice President of the Los Angeles Equine Advisory Committee, an official City advisory body she helped launch in 2009 that reports directly to the 15 L.A. council members.

Entering its seventh year, the EAC has an impressive achievement list on behalf of equestrians, from protecting vast city horse trails to fending off extreme activists attempting end-runs to squelch horse ownership. Tireless campaigns by Brown and her colleagues have provided insights, none greater than the importance of positive community involvement.

Horse Heritage Retained

Equestrian communities continue to thrive in East San Diego County

By AUDREY PAVIA for the Horsetrader - December 18th, 2014

EASTERN SAN DIEGO COUNTY – In the not-too-distant past, Eastern San Diego County was mostly grazing land for cattle, dotted with small farm towns. Today, this part of the county is a growing bedroom community, only 15 miles from downtown San Diego. Yet despite its significant growth over the last 50 years, Eastern San Diego still holds on to its agricultural roots. The evidence? Horses are still a big part of life here.

Horses in the City

From releases and staff reports - November 6th, 2014

Los Angeles City Hall was filled with horsepeople of all shapes and sizes Oct. 22 as the Day of the Horse was brought to council.

Los Angeles City Hall was filled with horsepeople of all shapes and sizes Oct. 22 as the Day of the Horse was brought to council.

LOS ANGELES – More than 100 equestians from 17 of this city’s diverse associations converged on City Hall Oct. 22 to commemorate the Official L.A. Day of the Horse.

Tom LaBonge, Councilman Fourth District, was front-center of the ceremonies, which also featured words from Los Angeles Equine Advisory Council President Dale Gibson and Vice President Lynn Brown. La Bonge patiently took time to thank and be photographed with each group, including the likes of the Equestrian Trails, Inc. Junior Ambassadors and ETI Corral 20, the Enterprise Farms U.S. Pony Club Riding Center, the Interscholastic Equestrian League, the L.A. Equestrian Vaulting Club and others.

Brown, a longtime equestrian advocate in her hometown who has urged equestrian groups to reach out to local city councils for a rapport with bureaucrats and horse people, was thrilled to see the turn-out of young riders.

It’s the View and much more

'A' circuit to trails to polo to charros, equestrians appreciate Lake View Terrace

By AUDREY PAVIA for the Horsetrader - September 18th, 2014

LAKE VIEW TERRACE — If you love California, you will appreciate Lake View Terrace. In the wintertime, the snow covered ridges of the San Gabriel Mountains stand as a backdrop. In the spring, wildflowers color the foothill slopes. On summer evenings, the smell of sage rises up from the creek beds. And in the fall, a crisp wind blows down from the hills.

Ride and Wine

Ranches, history, wineries paint Paso Robles landscape

By AUDREY PAVIA for the Horsetrader - August 21st, 2014

Vineyards and horses are part of Paso Robles past, present, and future.

Vineyards and horses are part of Paso Robles past, present, and future.

Horsetrader photo

It was 1797 when Father Junipero Serra planted more than 1,000 grapevines in the pristine hills of California’s central coast. The vineyard, adjacent to one of the Central Coast’s most beautiful missions, San Miguel Arcangel, would eventually become part of a picturesque community rich in history, viticulture, and, of course, horses.

Paso Robles, located in northern San Luis Obispo County, is home to 30,000 residents. Incorporated in 1889, the name Paso Robles comes from the Spanish El Paso de Robles, or “The Pass of the Oaks.” Situated 230 miles north of Los Angeles and 210 miles south of San Francisco, this 19.9-acre city is a haven for horse lovers.

Progress on the trail

From Horsetrader staff reports - July 17th, 2014

BONITA — Thanks to a campaign by members of a local riding group, a popular recreational trail near the Sweetwater Valley reservoir reopened June 25 after being closed for six months.

An ETI Weekend…

Trail Trials gives riders the next step to compete

Special to the Horsetrader - April 7th, 2011

PALMDALE – Equestrian Trails, Inc. may be in its 65th year, but the group’s energy is more like a young colt.

One of ETI’s most active corrals, ETI Corral #138, held a Trail Trial April 3 from the new Barrel Springs Arena in northern Los Angeles County, and 45 riders competed at the fun, well-attended event.

“Trail Trials are a fun competition on the trail that friends and family can do together,” said organizer Kimberly Dwight, adding that judging is based on safety and control in negotiation of 10 obstacles. “You’ll also learn lots about your relationship with your horse and how he responds to your cues.”

Favorite Places…

From Horsetrader staff reports - April 7th, 2011

State Parks photo

Cuyamaca Rancho State Park
San Diego County

Los Vaqueros Group Horse Camp
This group horse campground is available by reservation from mid May until mid September. You may make reservations by contacting Reserve America.

The group horse camp is located on Los Caballos road, about two miles east of Highway 79, inside Cuyamaca Rancho State Park. The park offers over 100 miles of hiking trails with pine and oak forests, meadows, streams, ocean and desert views.