About Cabin Creek Stables
In 2006, Devil’s Thumb Ranch officially started our horse program with the purchase of 25 horses. As we’ve grown, we’ve expanded our herd to 50-70 horses that are mostly quarter horses and quarter horse crosses. We have a wonderful group of 10-15 lease horses that we add to our program during the summer to help with our busiest season for horseback riding. Many of these horses come back for multiple seasons. The average age of our herd is 18 years old, which is middle-aged for a horse. These slightly older ages work best for our program since the majority of our guests are beginner riders and young buckaroos, but we also have horses better suited for experienced riders as well.
Based on the season, we have different methods of feeding the horses. In the summer, we “jingle” our horses to pasture each night and then bring them back to our corral in the morning. The term “jingling” comes from cowboys who allowed their herds to roam large acres of land. They would attach a bell to the lead horse to make it easier for the herd to be located. Keeping our horses in pasture overnight offers them a mental break each day when they can graze for up to 12 hours. In the summer, we invite our guests to take in the sight of our horses running to and from pasture. Guests are informed daily of the approximate times this takes place in the morning and the afternoon. This time can vary, so be sure to be early to make sure you don’t miss the action!
In the fall and winter as the grass starts to die off, we start providing hay for our horses. We will load up one of our 700-pound bales of hay on our wagon or sleigh and feed the herd with the help of two pulling horses. We typically feed this way multiple times a day and welcome guests on our feed rides to visit with the horses up close and personal!
All of our horses live outside year-round. With this more natural way of living, we see improved mental and physical health in our herd. Keeping a horse indoors is usually more for human comfort and convenience than for the positive health of the animal. We pride ourselves on letting our horses be horses. With this way of living, we tend to see fewer health problems or injuries. We also keep track of the number of rides per day each horse works and ensure they receive days off throughout the week so that they are never overworked.