By Patty Wilber
I have my own arena and round pen (with good footing, even in bad weather), but it is nice to visit other facilities for a change of pace and to see how the horses handle new environments.
Public arenas: There are two nice outdoor arenas and a really fancy indoor arena that are nearby.
Vista Sandia Arena, Bernalillo County
11809 Pino Ave.
Albuquerque, NM 87122
This is first on the list because I thought of the blog topic when I was there this past Sunday, so I took some pictures. I have been at the other two very recently as well, but alas, I did not take my own pictures.
Vista Sandia has a huge fenced outdoor arena with sand and rubber footing, two round pens, holding pens, a warm-up arena to the south, a dressage arena to the east also with good footing and something like 30 acres one can ride around on. It also has good parking,
The 30 acres are behind a flood control retention dam, but considering our dry climate, this area is often dry, as it was Sunday.
One can continue east up the arroyo some distance for more of a “trail ride” feel, but I would not come to this facility to with the primary goal of trail riding. There just isn’t enough trail.
The weather was a little iffy to start with (snow, wind) on Sunday, but it got better. It is in a fairly open area, so on windy days, you’d ride in the wind.
I had the entire arena to myself and only saw two other people at the park: riders that live in the area.
There is a shade shelter, a clean pit toilet, and a small announcer stand. There is no water, so bring your own.
The park gets use from walkers and some cyclists, but it never seems exceptionally busy.
The facility has a sign saying it is a “no reservation” facility, but occasionally a horse club will hold a show there.
Good luck using the Bernalillo County website to find out the grand details. This is what I found: A map with a pin on the location and the address. That’s it.
Edgewood Equestrian Facility, Town of Edgewood
97 W Frontage Rd
Edgewood, NM 87015
I was at this arena about two weeks ago, and guess what? It was windy and cold!
It might be the time of year?
This facility has a smaller arena than Vista Sandia and is right next to Wildlife West wild animal park, which does seem to bother some horses initially, but they get over it.
It also has a round pen, a nifty obstacle course, some short (1.64 miles, in a few loops), flat and easy trails, water for horses (at least in summer–I did not check it this time), a permanent pit toilet that is “pleasant” (for a pit toilet), covered seating and good parking.
I went late on a Saturday afternoon, in kind of cruddy weather as I had mentioned, and there was a group using the round pen and another rider that used the trails and the main arena. A non-horse couple stopped by to use the trails with their dog, but I think they gave up due to the cold and wind.
This arena generally seems busier than Vista Sandia and several local clubs hold shows there regularly.
The facility can be reserved for no charge from the Town of Edgewood. But if you try the Town of Edgewood site to find out about the area, don’t look under “Parks and Facilities” (which, in its defense, does provide a contact number) but if you then choose “Equestrian Park” you get four pictures and that is it.
Pick “Trails and Open Space” followed by “Equestrian Center Trails Map”. This gives you the trail map, an aerial view of the facility site and contact information. Go figure.
Stanley Cyclone Center, Santa Fe County
22 W. Kinsell Ave.,
Stanley, New Mexico 87056
I went to this one for a Walkin N Circles horse rescue fun show last Saturday because we cancelled our Back Country Horseman training ride because, well, it was, yes, cold and REALLY windy! That was a good call. But hey, this was indoors! Awesome!
I did not show. I wanted to get into the arena with Atti. (I gave a donation, so I was not a free-loader!) She seemed to like it there!
The indoor facility is very nice. There is good parking.
There is a big field that can be used for warm up (I was the only one blowing around out there this day).
There are other facilities there, as well, but I am just sticking to the horse basics.
They have an easy to find website with easy to find information. What a relief!
They also have open riding on Tuesdays, 1- 8pm and Thursdays 10-4pm, $5 per horse for 2 hours. There are usually between 5 and 20 riders throughout the time period.
You can rent the whole arena on other days for $40 for half a day (4 hours) for private riding, and people are signing up for every day of the week! They have a facebook page with the schedule!
Call Terri Werner to rent (505) 417-9380!
I might have to try a Tuesday night, soon!
Happy public arena riding!