Summer is the perfect time to explore the many parks that Central New York is home to.

One offers a unique way to explore its grounds – horseback.

Located in Fabius, Highland Forest – dubbed the “Adirondacks of Central New York” – is home to more than 20 miles of trails for hiking, mountain biking, cross-country skiing, and snowshoeing. From May to October, the county park also partners with Highland Outfitters to offer guided horseback rides for those ages 5 and up – no experience is necessary. For a group ride, the cost is $40 per person.

This was only my second time riding a horse. But fear not if you are a beginner like me; the guides show you everything you need to know about turning and stopping your horse, and they offer helpful advice along the way. A horse is also selected for each person based on their body type and personality – mine was Patch.

For the next hour, we wound our way through the forest. It was very peaceful, and the time passed by quickly. When we returned, we were able to give our horse a treat (or three).

Before you leave, make sure stop by the Skyline Lodge to take in the stunning view of the surrounding hills – or return during the winter months to enjoy a horse-drawn sleigh ride.

Please note: Advance registration is required for horseback rides. Payment must be in the form of cash or check. For more information, click here.

If You Go
Highland Forest
1254 Highland Park Road, Fabius.
When: Until September 5, horseback rides will be offered Tuesday – Sunday from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. From September 10 – October 24, they will be offered on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
More information:


Courtney Kless is the Editor in Chief of Family Times. Courtney is originally from Maryland. She earned her Master’s degree in Magazine, Newspaper and Online Journalism from Syracuse University. Courtney began her career as a sports journalist, then spent several years working in higher education, before joining the company in August 2019. She enjoys traveling, reading and hiking, and recently adopted a Labrador Retriever, Bailey.

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