Schneiders Employee Favorites

At Schneiders, horses define who we are. That's why we're excited to share with you some of our employee's favorite products, hacks, and lessons learned.

Trail riding is a great way for you and your horse to form a strong bond as you have to learn to trust each other as you traverse difficult terrain. It's also a great activity for a horse in training, because it gives them some down time but also something else to focus on and relaxes the mind so that when you go back to schooling he will be refreshed and ready to go. There can also be many situations while out riding that can be turned into training activities, like flexing around trees, hoof placement as you are stepping over and around fallen logs, water crossings and many more, and yet it's fun and not the same old boring routines. It is even more fun when you have all of your supplies with you and not sitting at home on a shelf.

I remember the first time I went trailing riding, I was so excited to hit the trail with my equestrian friends and my horse, Fancy. I remember running around that morning gathering my tack and my grooming box and stowing them in my trailer, then gathering my horse and loading her up. When we arrived at the place we would be riding, I unloaded Fancy, tied her to the trailer, and went about brushing her out in preparation of saddling her. That is when I realized I had not brought any fly spray! I usually keep the spray on a shelf in the barn and not with my grooming box, so I walked right past it and did not pack it with everything else. I had to borrow so many things that day, as I had either forgotten to bring them or did not know that I should bring them.

After that day, I started making myself checklists to help me remember everything I needed to take with me. These came in real handy when I went from short day rides to all week camping trips. I reference these lists each time I go riding to make sure I have everything my horse and I will need. Now, when I go riding, it's not me asking to borrow things. It's other people asking me, and I smile as I hand them the item while remembering my first trail ride.

Trail Riding Packing List

Packing for Trail Ride

I am going to share with you my checklist I have compiled from various places. Some of the items came from the internet, some came from experience, and some as suggestions from other equestrians who have gone through an experience and realized they needed to add something to their lists.

Here is what I like to keep in my tack compartment:

Pro Tip: You will want to carry extra halters, lead ropes, bridles and reins in case anything would break. If you have a tack compartment with room it's nice to have a water tank so you can bring water your horse is used to drinking. Also, some trails do not have access to water so you may need it. If you don't have room in your tack compartment you can get a tank for the bed of your truck. Almost all of these items I have purchased exclusively stay in my trailer so I don't have to pack them each time I need them.

I use the checklist to make sure I stock up on things I am getting low on, like fly spray, or if I forgot to clean the feed pans after the last trip. My first aid kit has a clear pouch on the inside of the lid, so I keep a checklist of what should be in the kit so I can replenish as needed.

Here is what I pack in my saddle/pommel bags:

Pommel Bag

  • Water
  • Lip Balm
  • Small First Aid Kit
  • Camera
  • Small Snack
  • Trail Map

Saddle Bag

  • Insect Repellent
  • Sunblock
  • Spare Halter and lead
  • Leather string for repairs
  • First Aid Kit
  • Waterproof Matches
  • Hoof Pick
  • Combination tool that can cut wire
  • Rain Gear
  • Drinks and Food (depending on how long you are going to ride)
  • Hoof Boot
  • Sweater/Jacket
  • Flash Light
  • TP and Wipes
  • Spare Trail Map
  • Garbage Bag ( take out what you bring in)

Fanny Pack or Pouch

Keep things that can not be lost on your person in case your horse gets away from you. I keep my phone, ID and keys on me at all times. If you are riding for a couple of hours, the snack you keep in the pommel bag may be enough, I always pack more food than I need.

Click to shop Trail Riding Saddle Bags.

Things to Keep in the Vehicle

  • Spare Tires
  • Trailer Jack
  • Water Tank ( in case of dry summer or water is not available)
  • Health Papers and Coggins
  • Flash Light
  • Wheel Chocks
  • Feed and Hay
  • Tool Bag

Pro Tip: I also add to my list a maintenance check list as in: Check tire pressure on truck and trailer, check vehicle fluids, and the most important, double and triple check to make sure the trailer hitch is locked and secure to the truck. The feed and hay you bring will depend on how long you are expecting to ride and how long you plan to stay at the trail after the ride. I always have two hay bags, one for when we get there and one for after the ride when I am talking and visiting with my fellow trail riders.

For Yourself:

Make sure you have appropriate clothing and boots for the terrain and weather. A fanny pack or pouch to put valuables in and keep attached to your person at all times. It is also a good idea to ride with at least one other person in case something happens so you have someone who can go for help. If you do not have a trail buddy make sure you tell someone where you are going, what route you may take and the time you are expecting to arrive home.

I hope this list helps you get started on your many trail adventures, next time we can talk about a list for when you are going to be camping with your horse. Have fun, be safe and enjoy the ride.

A Little About Me:

Schneiders Employee - Dianne Rutherford

Job Title: Customer Service Rep

Department: Customer Service

Discipline: Western / Trail Riding

My name is Dianne and I have had horses since my first pony at the age of 8. I have dabbled in the show world, western and gaited horse shows, I have also been involved in 4-H but my true love is to get out on the trail with a good trusty horse and enjoy nature. My mare is a 22 year old gaited horse that I have had for 20 wonderful years now. She has carried me to some blue ribbons in the ring, she has carried me down steep rocky terrain, and she has brought me back to camp when it was so dark I could not see her ears. One other thing my mare has given me, is the chance to meet many new and wonderful people out there on the trails who have become very dear friends. I applied for a job with Schneiders Saddlery as a Customer Service Representative about a year ago and they hired me! This has been one of the best jobs I have ever had, as everyday I get to talk to customers about their horses and their adventures. :)

Click to shop Trail Riding Gear.