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Horseback Riding in the Finger Lakes

TRAVELING WITH YOUR HORSE

The State of New York cares about the well being of the horses that live and travel in the state. If you're planning to travel through the State of New York with your horse, please review the material in the section on horses provided by the New York State Dept. of Agriculture and Markets.

GENERAL INFORMATION

Compiling a list of horseback riding trails in the Finger Lakes is no easy task. There are no Web sites listing trails either for the Finger Lakes in general or by county. Some state and county sites mention that horseback riding is allowed in certain parks or forests, but rarely are maps provided. Two of the reasons for this are probably because horses often do considerable damage to trails and the height of a rider sitting on a horse requires trees to be limbed. Repairing trails and limbing trees are activities park and forest managers would rather not do if they can help it.

 

"Where are you going?" asks a horse in the Finger Lakes, New York USA.You, the horse rider, can do a lot to prevent your horse--and horses in general--from getting a bad rap. Pick and choose your trails and the time of year you ride these trails carefully. Don't ride trails that are nothing but leaf mold as this is the type of trail that is most easily damaged by horses. Don't ride over sensitive native plants like trilliums, orchids, and trout lilies as they plants tend to die out if trampled. Don't allow your horse to deficate on trails used by hikers or in or near streams.

 

Keep in mind the following when riding on state land:

1. Horses must have a negative Coggins test.

2. Horses are not allowed in camping areas.

3. Horses should not be tethered to live trees.

 

The following trails are listed on county and state Web sites as being open to horseback riding. Trail maps are generally not available. If you know of other trails not on this list, please contact the publisher at publisher{at}ilovethefingerlakes.com. 

Finding maps of state lands

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservtion (DEC) has a mapping system called Environmental Navigator. This system provides a wide variety of information. You can ask it to show DEC offices, interstate highways, railways, and other facilities. You can also ask it to show recreational lands and choose a variety of "visible layers" you want included such as state parks, waterways, etc. You then can choose "active layers" like "hiking trail," "horse trail," etc. This mapping system takes patience to use, but can provide you with a map if you devote the time to it.

TRAILS

There is only one dedicated horse trail system in the Finger Lakes designed specifically for horses with trailer parking, water, and stalls. It is the Six Nations Trail in Schuyler County. All other trails are multiple-use trails with limited facilities. Some trails may be very short and not offer parking facilities. Check out each trail before making the effort to go.

Cayuga County

Auburn-Fleming Trail

Bear Swamp

Cato-Fair Haven Trail map

Erie Canal Trail

Finger Lakes National Forest

Hojack Trail

Howland Island

Chemung County

Maple Hill State Forest

604 acres. Pryne Rd., Town of Chemung.

Livingston County

Canaseraga State Forest

1287 acres. Scott Rd. (aka Scott Hill Rd.), Town of Ossian, Dansville, NY See also: http://home.eznet.net/~kfox/wny/sites/rtlsnake.htm#canaseraga

Letchworth State Park

Ossian State Forest

1303 acres. Bonner Rd., Town of Ossian, Dansville, NY

see also: http://home.eznet.net/~kfox/wny/sites/rtlsnake.htm#canaseraga

Rattlesnake Hill Wildlife Management Area

Monroe County

Black Creek Park

LeHigh Valley Trail

Mendon Ponds Park

Onondaga County

Highland Forest Park

Ontario County

Ontario Pathways Rail Trail

Schuyler County

Cinnamon Lake State Forest

See also: Cinnamon Lake

1786 acres. Hornby Rd., Beaver Dams, NY

Seneca County

Finger Lakes National Forest

Steuben County

Canacadea State Forest

1623 acres. Flanagan Rd., Hornell, NY

Dry Run State Forest

1062 acres. Duvall Rd. (aka Duran Rd.), in the Town of Hornby, Painted Post, NY

Moss Hill

1813 acres. O'Brien Rd., Savona, NY.

Rock Creek State Forest

704 acres. O'Haragan Rd. East in the Town of Greenwood

Tracy Creek State Forest

569 acres. Tracy Creek Rd., Addison, NY

Tioga County

Jenksville State Forest

Tompkins County

Hammond Hill State Forest

The Jim Schug Trail

Park at the Chaffee/West Lake roads parking lot. It can accommodate horse trailers.

South Hill Recreation Way

There is no really good on-line map for this trail. If you have a trailer, the best place to park is on Burns Rd. in the Town of Ithaca.

Regional

Horses are also allowed on all sections of the Genesee Valley Greenway. This 90-mile/145-kilometer linear trail system runs through Monroe, Livingston, Wyoming, Allegany, and Cattaraugus counties.

Other Suggestions

State Route 390

Running west of Rochester for more than 20 mi./32 km. is State Route 390. It is a divided 4-line road with a large grassy area dividing the directions. The road runs right next to Lake Ontario and has a paved bike lane that is about 5 ft/1.5 m. wide. You can easily park in one of several boat launch areas along the route and ride either in the bike lane or on the grass to the right of the bike lane (stopping for lunch right on the lakeshore) or on the grassy divider. The west-to-east side is equally nice with trees providing shade. What's really nice about this road is that, despite the fact that it's a 4-lane highway, there's very little traffic, even during the summer.

 

Old Erie Canal State ParkTrail

This scenic linear 36 mi./58 km. trail begins in Dewitt (Onondaga County) and ends in Rome (Oneida County). The surface is either stone dust or gravel. Park at Poolsbrook or Cedar Bay picnic areas and most intersections. This is a multi-use trail, so be prepared for bikers and hikers.

 

Erie Canal Heritage Trail

This 100-mi./161 km. multi-use trail runs between Tonawanda in western New York and Newark in Wayne County. Parking is available at many of the access points. Sign kiosks containing maps and historic information are located at many trailheads. The trail surface is stone dust with some heavily used portions around Rochester done in asphalt. A nice access point is near Green Lakes State Park at the intersection of State Routes 257 and 290 in Onondaga County. The parking lot is large enough to accommodate horse trailers.

Private Stables with Trails

Big House Stables

Hartford House

5 Avon Rd.

Geneseo, NY 14454

585-243-2143

Cayuga Lakeside Stables

9186 Booth Rd.

Trumansburg, NY 14886

607-387-9050

Copper Creek Farm

5041 Shortsville Rd.

Shortsville, NY 14548

585-289-4441

The Glass Magnolia

8339-8347 Main St.

Interlaken, NY 14847

607-330-2809

Liberty Stables

4318 Buckelew Rd.

Bloomfield, NY 14469

585-229-2384

Mountain Horse Farm

7520 West Hollow Rd.

Naples, NY 14512

585-374-5056

Oakhill Farm Bed and Breakfast

8983 Oakland Rd.

Nunda, NY 14517

585-468-5441

O'Brien's Farm and Stables

2158 Dumplin Hill Rd.

Moravia, NY 13118

315-497-3478

(Must have own horse)

Painted Bar Stables

4093 Lake Ave.

Burdett, NY 14818

607-342-5324

Route 80 Stables

5016 S. Onondaga Rd.

Nedrow, NY 13120

315-492-3404

Top Rock Stables

1544 County Road 23

Watkins Glen, NY 14891

607-535-8872

RIDING RETREATS

Phoenix Ranch

5170 Kings Corners Rd.

Romulus, NY 14541

607-869-5437

ACCOMMODATIONS

Bed & Breakfasts

Donameer Farm

7417 Velie Rd.

Hammondsport, NY 14840

607-569-2115

The Glass Magnolia Bed & Breakfast

8339-8347 Main St.

Interlaken, NY 14847

607-330-2809

Greenwood Hill Farm

230 Slaght Rd.

Andover, NY 14806

607-478-5171

Mountain Horse Farm B & B

7520 West Hollow Rd.

Naples, NY 14512

585-374-5056

Oakhill Farm Bed and Breakfast

8983 Oakland Rd.

Nunda, NY 14517

585-468-5441

Rentals

Hunter's View

2086 Goundry Hill Rd.

Bradford, NY 14815

570-337-4219

Camping

Backbone Horse Camp

Finger Lakes National Forest

5218 State Route 414

Hector, NY 14841

607-546-4470

Bear Creek Appaloosas

6448 Glen Cove Rd.

Moravia, NY 13118

315-496-2310/315-496-2092

(Reservations required) 

Finger Lakes Equestians

2068 Dumplin Hill Rd.

Moravia, NY 13118

315-224-9085

Cottages/Cabins

Big House Stables

Hartford House

5 Avon Rd.

Geneseo, NY 14454

585-243-2143

O'Brien's Farm and Stables

2158 Dumplin Hill Rd.

Moravia, NY 13118

315-497-3478

Route 80 Stables

5016 S. Onondaga Rd.

Nedrow, NY 13120

315-492-3404

CLUBS

Rochester Trail Riders

 

Updated 10 March 2014

 

 

 

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