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Old 11-04-2012, 05:54 AM   #76
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the horses are not the problem, it's the riders.

I'm just here for the cake.
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Old 11-04-2012, 08:37 PM   #77
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Couple things to consider,,,

No matter how well trained a horse is,, hes still a grazing animal with his whole physical design wrapped around avoiding predators. If he cant see you with both eyes, you are BAD. When he panics its 1500 lbs of panic trying to get you out of the way... Bad thing (TM)

Anything moving at a trot or faster is the enemy.

Horses remember dangerous locations, they actually have scary memories. We had Walkers for years, smart well trained worked a lot. should be rock stable. Were used to hunt bears we could throw dead predators on their back and they would barley look. BUT one of them had for no apparent reason a fear of small things crawling on the ground (Beetles!) he would stomp rattle snakes to death, run a coyote down and kill him . Had several rodeos with that horse when a bug landed on a log near us while riding..

Our horses were originally used to work cattle in the Snake River Canyon area, 6 years after we bought them, riding down a trail my moms horse suddenly turns left down hill on a old trail and wont stop till he gets to the bottom of the canyon. Got to an old camp and stopped. Later my dad ran into the rancher we bought the horses from and told him the story. Guy busted a gut laughing, he had a herder camped there who trained that horse, and that trail was the route he took to get on top of the ridge every morning and ride the heard, that horse KNEW there was hay at the bottom of that trail...

Not saying that many horse owners are doing all they could but many could sure do better.

We switched to Quads ,, cheaper and easier to use...

Everybody resents the faster ride, Hikers hate everybody, Bikers hate horses, horses hate motor cycle mountain bikes hate motorcycles.... Endless...

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Old 11-05-2012, 01:05 PM   #78
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I have had both, and I have found that you can hurt yourself by accident on a bike, but a horse will hurt you on purpose.
On picking-up the poo, unlike a dog, a horse doesn't stop and "assume the position" like a dog does. So if you are riding, it is very possible to not know he is going. Therefore you don't know when to stop to clean it up.

Personally I don't think horse poop stinks. YMMV
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Old 11-05-2012, 02:04 PM   #79
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Growing up in the country, horse and cow shit all over the place was just part of life. I personally don't mind the smell nearly as bad as dog shit. Horses also tend to be on the road/trail whereas dogs will be wherever their owners (and other people) are walking.

If you live in the country and you are not prepared to deal with mud, shit or other agricultural debris in the road, perhaps you should rethink your choice of transportation.

As for horses and riders, in my experience, most horses are less spooked if you just keep doing what you were doing - i.e. pass them at a steady pace, making a steady noise. Unless you are in a very remote area where encounters between horses and motorized road users is unlikely, the riders should be in control and the horses should be adequately trained/conditioned not to react. Shame on the owner if that's not the case.

I have encountered horses many times on the very narrow roads in SW England. If it's a single track road and the horse rider doesn't pull the horse into a gateway or up against the hedge, I will pull to the side myself. Only once can I remember the rider going past with their nose in the air and not thanking me - and that was not on a Westcountry road but a major road in Surrey - and I only pulled over because at least a couple of horses were already freaking when they saw me four or five hundred feet away. Should not have been on the road IMO.
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Old 11-06-2012, 10:32 AM   #80
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Originally Posted by tokyoklahoma View Post
I have had both, and I have found that you can hurt yourself by accident on a bike, but a horse will hurt you on purpose.
On picking-up the poo, unlike a dog, a horse doesn't stop and "assume the position" like a dog does. So if you are riding, it is very possible to not know he is going. Therefore you don't know when to stop to clean it up.

Personally I don't think horse poop stinks. YMMV
Horse diapers. Simple.
I think there might be a more scenic route somewhere...
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Old 11-11-2012, 04:09 PM   #81
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Originally Posted by Ceri JC View Post
In the UK, the TRF* go to great lengths to befriend and pacify the equestrian community. Even going so far as to provide free marshalling at horseriding events. The rationale being, we want them to think of us as legitimate, responsible trail users and to not join in the walking community in trying to get us slung off byways that they ride. By and large, Horse Riders are usually very grateful when I slow down/stop for them or am clearly making a concerted effort to avoid scaring their horses. One dickhead with a loud pipe going close past them at full chat with a loud pipe can undo all that good work in an instant. I'm acutely aware of this and try and pass them as quietly/considerately as possible.

By and large, I find that horseriders and dirt riders get on pretty well and I've never been involved with, or witnessed an altercation with one on the trails**. It's rare to meet a UK trail rider who has. From what I've read in this thread it seems in the USA it's more of an issue (despite you having all that space and therefore coming into contact with them less often). Perhaps it's the cultural difference: In the states, a horse rider is typically someone who thinks he's John Wayne; perhaps a 4 legged variant of our own 'Pirates' and he thinks riding a horse automatically makes him some sort of badass. In the UK, they're typically upper middle class women/teenage girls and they tend to behave as such.

*a voluntary group that exists largely to try and fight the government taking away what few legal dirt roads and rights of way we have

**the (tarmac'd) roads are another matter entirely!

The strange irony to this whole thread...

1) I ride horses competitively. On an average weekend, there are probably only <5 male riders per 400 entries.
2) On the weekends I ride the bikes in groups, there are probably only <2 women per 40 bikes.
3) Both groups worry immensely about land-loss issues

The take away here should really be: How can I energize the other folks to save the land we both love. BTW, seems like a nice way to meet a soul-mate too!
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Old 11-12-2012, 03:27 PM   #82
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HAHAHAH.... when I was very young I dated a girl who had an Apaloosa. He was 16.5 hands, giant beast, and terribly friendly and gentle... to me. He was not so to all males. I loved that horse. He would be fine on rides near cars, traffic, etc.

However, he was terribly afraid of platic bags, tires, plastic cups. Would stop, and not move forward until you moved the offending object. Crazy, I miss that horse !!!!!

Tail of the Dragon at Deal's Gap... Avoid it now, do a trackday.

Do not do business with Myrtle West Cycle... Not a reputable vendor by a long shot.
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Old 11-13-2012, 11:45 AM   #83
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Pretty much all of my interactions with horse riders have been good. Remember one though when me and three buddies were riding some good washington single track an came up on 3 horses coming towards us. We all pulled off the trail and killed the engines. First two were men and they rode by pissed off looking but didnt say anything, the last one was a woman and she told us we were lucky they stopped because they had a gun. apparently the first guy had a gun on his hip. I told her she was lucky we stopped because her horse was very skittish and would likely have dumped her hard if we hadnt. Normally we coast away from the horses but this time I figured I would start the bike, but for the first time my bike didnt start first kick and she was a ways away by the time I got it going. Being threatened with violence when we did everything right and nice just pissed me off. Especially considering the area we were in was built and maintained by cyclists and was never meant to be a horse, bicycle, and walking area. Wasnt too long before you couldnt hardly ride there any more. People would swing fishing poles at you, hikers would walk in the middle of the trail to purposefully keep you behind them, mountain bikers would ride down the middle of the trail until they came to a hill and then bitch about getting rocks thrown at them, well dont stop at the bottom of a steep hill idiot.
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Old 11-13-2012, 12:48 PM   #84
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Originally Posted by Wookazoid View Post

My group of riders will stop, shut off our bikes and remove our helmets. We also greet the riders so the horses know we're "human". Even though we do this, the horses sometime will act uneasy. I guess I would too seeing a bunch of Power Rangers on strange bright colored alien space craft.

The last thing I want to do is see someone hurt. We also need to keep up a good rapport with the equestrian types since we have to work together to keep our trails open.
What he said. Been my policy for 40 years. Bikes and gear scare the hell out of most horses.
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