Jill Richardson leads the trail ride along the beach on her trusty buckskin Photo Sophie Jackson / Capricorn Coast Mirror
Jill Richardson leads the trail ride along the beach on her trusty buckskin Photo Sophie Jackson / Capricorn Coast Mirror Sophie Jackson

Saddle up for beachside fun

RIDING along the long sandy stretch of Farnborough Beach on horseback is one of my childhood fantasies come true.

Born in the saddle and growing up in the "wild west", where dodging brigalow and jumping fallen trees on my horse was my favourite game, the idea of riding on the beach seemed entirely glamorous to me.

Joining Jill Richardson at Mercure Capricorn Resort for a morning ride recently, I was impressed with the quality of the horses, which ranged in ability from quiet steady plodders that will always follow the tail in front, to athletes who need to lead.

My mount, Makita, was an intelligent grey galloway, quiet enough for an inexperienced rider and responsive for more experienced riders to have fun.

Jill has been taking care of the horses at the resort for 20 years and loves every minute, from training the horses to taking tourists out through the resort property.

Knowing her stock well, Jill is able to match horses with riders and can tailor the steed to the ability of the riders on the day.

Taking riders along the beach and along the sandy tracks through the bush and back to the homestead, Jill said she mixes the rides up with different riding structures depending on what guests want.

"There's a bit of Man From Snowy River stuff going up and down the dunes and taking in the ocean and the bush terrain," she said.

Guided Horseriding at Mercure Capricorn Resort is available from Wednesday to Sunday at 7-9am in the summer months.



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