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Review Highlights
Fun but not for the horses

We did the one hour ride. The instructors first ask every individual their riding experience and... read more

Reviewed 13 June 2016
cgasp01
,
New York City, New York
Enjoyed the ride!

I am not an experienced rider so this was great for me ! Very well organized with good guides... read more

Reviewed 19 September 2015
TrishM33
,
Toronto, Canada
via mobile
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Reviewed 10 October 2016 via mobile

We organised the 1 hour tour with some trepidation, having read some really mixed reviews here.

We, with our three kids (8, 11 and 13) loved every minute. The lady at check in was friendly and helpful and happy to answer any questions. It may have helped that we were there 45 mins before the start and this was about perfect. The next ladies who helped with the helmets and horses were also funny and helpful. They explained how things were done there. We were there at the same time as a. Experienced rider and her boyfriend. Both seemed to be happy and enjoy themselves too.

Finally, the two guides were great. Especially Abbie/Addie (?) who had our kids' full attention from start to finish.

We're not experienced riders. We weren't looking to be Cowboys or do advanced riding. We wanted exactly what the tour gave us: an easy enjoyable ride in beautiful countryside which was also suitable for children and people like us who have only ridden a couple of times.

I had a really big mare, who had a bit of personality but was fine. She was lovely. The kids had very docile horses which didn't need too much expertise. The staff matched the horses, the people and the trail order well, in my view. There weren't any problems between he horses.

The staff was all friendly and helpful and took their time to make sure we had a great time. There was no stress at all, just a great experience that we will all remember for a long time to come. Everyone was chatty and we got a lot of extra information about the area, the horses and how MHT works by just asking and listening.

I can only recommend this experience to others.

2  Thank Philip G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 June 2016

I cannot believe that we actually go riding on the beach! I can't wait until I go there. From what I heard, this place is the best!

Thank Makayla K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 June 2016

We did the one hour ride. The instructors first ask every individual their riding experience and then pair them up to horses accordingly. The trail was mostly in the woods and then a quick stop at the beach for pictures. Wish we had more time at the beach. You can bring your phone as long as you put it on silent (so as not to possibly spook a horse), and wear it on your neck. They supply the case and string. Everything was ok and I had a nice time, except for one issue...

Along the trail we crossed the big sur river. Each way, my horse (Gabby) stopped at the bank of the river and literally groaned. He really did not like crossing the river. I thought he was just being picky, but while crossing (when I finally got him to go), I could feel him slipping on rocks and tediously trying to step his way across the river. It's hard to see under the running water and I really feel that if these horses are going to be making numerous crossings everyday, the owners should at least clear away the big rocks to make it easier for them.

Other than that, it was a nice experience but if there was another horseback riding tour available in Big Sur, I would try that instead of Molera.

5  Thank cgasp01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 April 2016

We did the afternoon beach ride from 1- 3:00pm. Came at appointed time - 12 :30 to fill out paper work, etc. Total of 5 in out group & I liked that helmets were optional. Asked a few questions about rpevious experinece- our not allot- mostley trail rides & frineds horsers years ago- then adjusted us each into the saddle. I was on " Boss Mare" I was told & would be last.
TRail had poison aok on both sides & my horse kept ckirted the bushes. Glad I wore pants. Lead riders was informative on area. Crossed creek twice which felt like you were in a Western Movie! Beach ride was short, but beautiful. Guide took pictures with camera if you had it.
Don't complain about not trotting...It says right on the papers you sign that it is a 2 hours trail ride, no getting off, no trotting or running.
A bit stiff getting off, but everyone did fine & enjoyed it.
Best thing is all the horses looke well groomed, fed, etc. Apparently they just got off Big Sur pasture land & now ready for spring, summer & fall rides.
The staff was friendly & easy going. Gave just the right amount of explanation and felt safe on horses.
Would do again.

2  Thank Kerryloves2travel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 September 2015 via mobile

I am not an experienced rider so this was great for me ! Very well organized with good guides. They gave each rider an introduction to their horse and their habits before starting out. I felt very comfortable with my horse Snickers:). I did the two hour afternoon ride which took you to the beach after going through forest and some open country.
It is a classic trail ride at a calm pace.

1  Thank TrishM33
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 September 2015

Before I ream this outfit, I am a horse trainer and riding instructor and have been for over 40 years. My family owned and operated a riding stables in Carmel, and I'm an author of a soon to be released Horse Safety Manual. I am a professional, it's not my first BBQ. I did not tell them any of this, but my friend mentioned that I was her trainer when we were kids. That may be why I was treated the way I was, though I didn't say anything. The guide told us that next time we should show up in tennis shoes and say we know nothing--we'd have better treatment. Really??? (we wore jeans and boots)

First the good: The horses are well taken care of--good hoof care, good body scores, decent tack. Our guide was great.

Now the terrible: The operators were downright awful. Condescending and arrogant, the one that 'helped' me demanded that I listen to her entire speech and question nothing. She was rude and liked to throw her weight around to be sure we knew who was in charge. She was insulting and happily told us they wean the people at the office and are proud to turn back anyone who offers Any Kind of conversation, so if you go, do not talk. She did not handle getting me settled to ride in a safe manner at all. She took the reins from me and threw them up near the horse's ears, then had me put my knee up onto the pommel (front of the saddle) so she could adjust the stirrups. Had the horse spooked, I would have been off-balance and wouldn't have had control since I had no reins in my hands. She didn't either. Very very bad way to keep a customer safe on a horse.

The trails were nice, though very dusty, but hey, it's the end of summer and CA is in a drought. The beach ride was a bit of a joke, but again, it was fine.

Don't take anything with you. Nothing. They will make you take a Chapstick out of your back pocket. You will not be allowed to guide the horse in any manner and I was told "No kissy-smoochy noises!" during the ride. The horses are about half-dead in their paces, but they need to be for beginners to not die on the trail, I suppose. If you want to ride for real, keep looking, because this place is a joke. There is a true Beach ride near Marina, just up the coast and they will allow you to trot a little, too. Don't even think about doing more than a snail's pace with these folks. Actually, that part was fine and I enjoyed my two hour ride that would have taken half the time on one of my horses.

If you want photos, be sure your camera or phone has a string on it. Otherwise, you can't take pics. There was a lecture to go along with photo taking, but we thankfully didn't have to sit through that.

You will be told to be there a half hour early. If you're late, they may not let you ride.
I do not recommend this outfit on any level; there are better places.

11  Thank Tanya B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 August 2015

We choose the 2 hour trail ride that takes you through part of the redwoods and the hills right to a short walk on the beach. The guides are familiar with the plant life and the history of the area. If you have not ridden a horse in a while I would suggest a shorter ride. Our legs and back were killing us after 2 hours. Bring a hat, sunblock and I would suggest a long sleeve shirt as you will be in the sun for part of the ride. There is no stopping once the ride starts so empty your bladder.

2  Thank lovelife40
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 August 2015 via mobile

I just recently visited this place and was immediately told my children had to sign contracts. Once we got assigned to our horses we were told very strict directions on how to treat them properly. I got the horse Melody and she was SO slow. She was a few yards behind everyone else almost all the time and was told if she didn't move, the horse behind her would bite. I really enjoyed crossing the river and walking on the beach on our horses. The ride was over the amount of time we were told it would be. Overall, the ride had some good, and some bad things.

2  Thank Michael C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 August 2015

I believe the only riding available in Big Sur, it was a pleasant 2 hour ride through redwoods and ending up on the beach. Probably better to book a private ride just to get more lively horses! Mine "knew exactly what to do" and nothing was going to get her to do anything different! However, that is good for many!

Thank Apopik
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 July 2015

My wife and I recently went on their 2.5 hour tour from 3:30pm to 6pm. You'll pull in to Andrew Molera State Park, go down the hill, and then take an left under their sign before the park attendants booth. When you reach the corral, there is plenty of parking and portable restrooms. The staff were much friendlier in person than over the phone and recommended we change clothes in the car vs. the outhouses. You must be there 30 minutes ahead of time to sign wavers and get fitted. A couple came in later with no reservations and they said it was too late for them, even though we were all just sitting around waiting for the previous tour to return. I thought it was strange to turn down business like that.

I'm not knowledgeable enough to comment about horse care and I'm not an animal rights activist, but I didn't see anything wrong with the ranch conditions as others have stated (without specifics). Only to say that the horses had great personalities and I saw all the staff treat the horses very well and always positive.

We were able to take our phone and camera with us if it was hanging from a lanyard which they do provide, but most everything else was off limits if it can fall. Here's the bottom line - they don't want you getting off the horse at all during the ride. It was a hot day, but as soon as you hit the beach it can get very chili, very fast. Bring a jacket if you can. Helmets are optional for adults, but required for anyone under 18. They have stairs and stumps to help everyone get on/off the horses.

The ride starts off slow and stays slow the entire time. I loved going up and down hills to break things up a bit along with the redwoods. The river (creek unless it's raining) crossings were also fun, but the long straight parts were painfully slow after a while. This may be normal for most vendor horseback rides. I think 2.5 hours was a bit too long to ride at that pace and found myself closing my eyes for a bit of it. I wish they would have invited some of us to trot a bit.

The beach was a pretty quick stop. You stroll down to the mouth of the river (maybe 100 yards), guides take pictures, then stroll back. The horses can get spooked by deer, twigs snapping, and some didn't like the ocean waves.

Your bum will hurt after a couple hours and my feet would get a little numb. Some complained about knees or ankles, so be prepared. The staff were very careful to help everyone off and make sure we were OK standing again. Great, relaxing ride and not bad for the price.

Hope this helps.

1  Thank HurricaneMike
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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