Horseback Riding in Central Oregon

Arriving in Central Oregon, it’s hard not to imagine yourself on horseback. Whether you’re ambling through wildflower meadows in the shadow of the Cascade mountains or trotting through Central Oregon’s storied high desert, the region beckons visitors to escape the grind and spend an hour or more in the saddle.

Fortunately, several guides and outfitters make it easy to do just that—whether near Bend, Redmond, Sunriver, or Sisters and beyond. First-timers can receive private or group lessons, while riders of all abilities can enjoy trail riding through the disparate landscapes that make our region so special. So here’s our guide to horseback riding in Central Oregon.

A man on horseback overlooking high desert views.

Horseback Riding Near Bend and Redmond

Two women on a trail ride at Smith Rock State Park.
Bend and Redmond might be the biggest (and busiest) communities in Central Oregon—but you don’t have to travel far to experience the laid-back ranch lifestyle that was a hallmark of the region for decades in the early 20th century. Several guides offer rides through scenic private ranches, as well as some of the region’s most popular parks, to beginners and experts alike. So if you’re looking to get away from the city for a bit, here’s the skinny on horseback riding near Bend and Redmond.

And when your ride’s over, learn more about visiting Bend, Oregon, for more on enjoying the city’s creative culinary scene, copious craft beer options, outdoor activities, and more.

FlySpur Ranch

On the outskirts of Tumalo sits FlySpur Ranch, which offers a little something for riders of all abilities and experience levels. The family-run ranch offers tours all year long, with private and semi-private rides available, and each trip is tailored to meet the needs of the riders.

FlySpur’s rides range from two to four hours, with several options available for a memorable outing—such as a 3.5-hour scenic tour that includes a catered meal (packed with local ingredients and regional items) and a four-hour sunset tour that includes a grilled meal on the trail or back at the ranch. Each ride also includes grooming and a quick lesson before setting out. And since you’re so close to town, learn more about visiting Tumalo, Oregon, after your next ride.

Smith Rock Trail Rides

Everything you need to know about Smith Rock Trail Rides is all in the name.

Yes, each of the company’s rides depart from a private ranch that borders Smith Rock State Park—and include 1.5-hour trips through the area’s majestic rock formations in the heart of the Crooked River canyon. The relaxed, small-group outings are tailored to beginners and those looking for a casual outing. Sunset rides are also available.

Wilderness Horse Adventures

Near the eastern edge of Bend, where the region’s ranchland meets the high desert, sits Wilderness Horse Adventures. The experienced outfitter customizes every outing to the skills and experience levels of each rider, with licensed, friendly guides choosing among hundreds of miles of trail for the best possible experience. (Rides along the Deschutes River are especially popular.)

Brasada Equestrian Club at Brasada Ranch

Whatever kind of ride you want, you’ll most likely find it at the Brasada Equestrian Club at Brasada Ranch.

Trail rides cover more than 900 acres of high-desert terrain, as well as pre-ride instructions and helpful information from a friendly guide along the way. Rides generally last 1.5-2 hours, and several curated private rides and lessons (lasting up to four hours) are available for children and adults of all abilities. Families can even grab a few free carrots from the resort’s general store and feed the resort’s horses before or after their outings.

Brasada Ranch sits just 20 minutes south of Redmond, making it an easy outing for locally sourced food, quality craft beer, historic charm, and more. Plan your vacation in Redmond, Oregon, for more on the exciting community.

Diane’s Riding Place

Want a relaxing trail ride? Hankering to hone your skills? However you want to do it, Diane’s Riding Place is happy to help. The 20-acre ranch sits just 15-20 minutes from the communities of Bend, Redmond, and Sisters, making it an accessible destination for riders throughout the region. Options include private and group lessons, pony rides for young children, one-hour pleasure rides through the ranch’s trails, and more; before each outing, horses are hand-picked to match the abilities of each rider.

Horseback Riding Near Sunriver

Often, visitors arrive in Sunriver to relax. The community, after all, is home to a resort that encourages rest and relaxation in all its forms. Naturally, one of those relaxing activities happens to be horseback riding through the quiet wooded areas nearby—so here’s a quick look at what to expect, whether you need a first-time lesson or you’re a seasoned rider.
Two people lead young kids on horseback.

Trail Rides at Sunriver Stables

Sunriver Resort hosts a wide range of activities all year long—from popular golf courses to winter sleigh rides—so it’s only natural the resort would take advantage of the community’s natural beauty with horseback rides at Sunriver Stables.

Those seven and older can enjoy beginner-friendly rides that range from 45 to 75 minutes—with each including 15 minutes of instruction and 30-60 minutes on the trail. Outings, led by Sunriver Trail Rides, show off the area’s natural beauty with trips through wide-open wildflower meadows and lush forests of ponderosa pine. Hand-led pony rides are also available for children 2 and older. Want to know where else to go, and what else to see, around the bustling resort community? Plan your visit to Sunriver, Oregon, today.

Horseback Riding Near Sisters

A horseback rider trots through a field with a pine forest and mountain in the background.
When you visit Sisters, Oregon, one of the first things you notice is the community’s affection for the Old West. Swinging saloon doors greet you at bars and restaurants around town, wooden sidewalks can be found along Sisters’ main drag, and even public restrooms are marked for “cowboys” and “cowgirls.”

It only makes sense, then, that one of the most iconic activities of the Old West—hopping in the saddle and going for a horseback ride—would become a storied attraction around Sisters. So if you’re looking for a dose of that Old West lifestyle, here are a few outfitters around town who offer lessons and trail rides to riders of all experience levels.

Stables at Black Butte Ranch

You’ll find no shortage of fun activities at Black Butte Ranch, just 15 minutes northwest of Sisters. But horseback riding just might be one of the most popular outings around the historic resort, which sits in the shadow of dramatic mountain peaks and at the edge of thick forests.

Trips range from 3.3 to 7 miles for beginner and intermediate riders (usually lasting 1-2 hours); highlights include Indian Ford Creek, scenic meadows (where views include Broken Top and the Three Sisters), and forests of pine and aspen. More advanced riders can opt for a half-day or full-day outing, the latter of which heads into the Deschutes National Forest or the scenic Three Sisters Wilderness.

Long Hollow Ranch

Long Hollow Ranch occupies a unique place in Central Oregon—both literally and figuratively. Sitting 20 minutes northeast of Sisters, the working ranch sits at a kind of natural crossroads, where the forested foothills of the Cascades begin to open up and give way to the region’s high-desert landscapes. And, not for nothing, but history runs deep at the ranch, where the rustic barn is more than 125 years old.

With so much history, it’s only natural that guests can sign up for basic horseback riding lessons and take a relaxing trail ride. Long Hollow’s rides last 1.5-2 hours and include a mix of instruction and time on the trails—depending on the needs and skills of each rider. Along the way, riders enjoy sweeping views of the brush-covered high desert (similar to what the first ranch hands must have seen more than a century ago) and nearby Cascade peaks.

Explore Nature’s Beauty

From the sagebrush-covered plains of the high desert to the towering pines and majestic mountain peaks, discover the diverse landscape Central Oregon has to offer.