Over 100 miles of horse trails wind through the steep American River canyons and along the American River. The most famous trail is the Western States Trail, which runs 100 miles from Lake Tahoe to Auburn, with over 20 miles in the Auburn State Recreation Area. Here are a few must-see rides.
Knickerbocker/Cool Trailhead – Located behind the fire station off Highway 49 in Cool is the parking lot and trailhead for the 10-mile Olmstead Loop Trail and connector trails. You’ll find plenty of parking for both cars and horse trailers.
Cronan Ranch – You’ll find two day-use only staging areas here, accessing scenic trails along the American River. Pedro Hill, the one closest to Pilot Hill, is not very large but can accommodate several rigs of varying sizes. The larger of the two staging areas, which is also the newest, is called Magnolia and has space for quite a few rigs with no restrictions on size. You can ride/hike from one staging area to the other.
Don’t own your own horse? You’ll find outfitters that provide everything from guided rides to pack charters.
Camp Richardson Corral
Hwy. 89, South Lake Tahoe
Summer: Boarding, hourly guided rides, breakfast and dinner rides (Reservations required), pack charters
Winter: Sleigh rides
Hwy. 89, Near Cascade Lake
Summer: Boarding, hourly guided rides, breakfast and dinner rides (reservations required), pack charters