The trail guide, Jeremiah, was very personable and helpful. He gave good suggestions and stayed positive and cheerful. The trail was flat which was enjoyable and the horses were very calm. This is a public trail and on the day after Thanksgiving there were a number of people, children and dogs. The horses remained well-behaved. However, it did take away some of the pleasure one gets when going out for some quiet and solitude in nature. Also, I wish we would have been able to sneak in a little trot and galloping.
There was nothing to dislike. I was a little apprehensive, not having ridden for so many years, but the staff was very pleasant from office people to barn workers. The Instructor was patient and explained every little detail and made me feel very confident. After the ride, I was given a tour of the premises. The stalls were impeccable and the horses seemed well taken care. There was a bunch of young volunteers grooming them and walking the ponies around. I love this place and I will definitely be back for their Rusty Riders program.
It is easy for people to write about negative things but they should really be sure it is not a singular event or the observation of the inexperienced . Seaton Hackney Stables is a public stable operated by an individual who has been in the business for well over 30 years. The horses are school horses for the most part and have to be cared for in order to perform and work. They cannot be neglected for simple business reasons. In addition to that, the animal is respected in its own right. The instructors are well trained and manage all levels of riders and temperment. To be honest, in some cases, the parents are the bigger problem. To ride a horse without any knowledge of the anatomy, care and needs of the animal would be a disservice to the rider and surely the horse. I have been involved at some level with Seaton Hackney Stables for well over 35 years.....My children rode at the stable even before it was closed due to fire. Today, their children ride there also. It is true on a specific day at a specific time the stalls may need to be mucked. But who is to say that within the next hour it would be done? A counselor may be less than perfect at one minute, but who is to say that is the normal tone. Who among us hasn't had a bad moment? The responsibility of young riders and valuable animals is at stake. It is a facility which everyone should visit from time to time and get inspired by the youth and the activity and the beauty of the horses. I don't ride and I love it there. We are lucky to have this stable in our county and even more fortunate to have it run by Mr. Schumacher. He understands the horses, the riders and the stable. It is a public stable and it belongs to everyone in Morris County. Let's count our blesssings and remember how hard the work is there for our benefit. I am ashamed of the people who can write a review from a bad experience and not work with the stable to remedy their negativity. Everyone have a ball!
My daughters have been riding at Seaton Hackney for about 14 years, even before it was renovated. This stable is a gem in Morris County. It is a real working stable; if you don't want to get dirty or muck stalls or smell horse menure, do not bother. Riding is more than what little kids see on TV, with perfectly groomed riders, neat as a pin in their jackets and jodphurs and stunning, million dollar horses. It is about a love of horses that is hard to describe, feeling one with your horse, admiring this animal for the beauty of their stride and wanting to spend as much time as possible with them. Seaton Hackney expects students to learn anatomy, horse care and grooming along with riding skills. These skills are taught by trained instructors and counselors. The horses are school horses that are well cared for and loved by the staff. My daughters have loved many many horses here over the years and have learned valuable life lessons as well. I highly recommend this stable.
My daughter attended the camp this year for the second year in a row. We are repeat customers for two reasons...
1. This facility caters to real people...not snobby horse people or people who expect to walk in, jump on a horse, then walk away. My daughter learned to care for the horse, care for the facility, and care for the other people.
2. The horses. These horses are all so well taken care of and loved by the staff and the other riders. Horses range from super small (and cute) ponies to the schooling horses to fancier jumping and showing horses.
Unlike other facilities, this one made my daughter feel welcome and encouraged her involvement. She was not just a "client" but a part of the family. That's the type of environment that we wanted for our daughter.
Is there manure in the yard? Sometimes, yes. But these ARE horses and it IS a barn. If you want to be pampered and treated like a princess who doesn't have to groom a horse or lift a finger, this isn't the barn for you. However, if you want to be a real equestrian and learn how to care for and love a horse properly, I cannot say more than BRAVO to this facility and THANK YOU for all of the amazingly friendly and caring counselors and instructors who work there.
My family and I recently rode at the barn and had a terrific time. The instructors were friendly, knowledgeable and patient - this was important because we were all beginners - ages 7 to 43. The horses assigned to us were calm, responsive and appropriate for our riding level. The instructors took extra time to talk to us after our session was over about taking future lessons and just riding in general. The office staff was welcoming and made sure we had properly fitting helmets, which I appreciated. We are even thinking about having our 7-year-old's birthday there. Fun.
We signed up our 9 year old girl for the horse summer camp because she loves horses and we thought it would be a great experience. The two week camp was a terrible waste of time. The counselors were completely inattentive. I actually stayed at the camp to watch what they did all day and was very unpleasantly surprised that in the whole day each kid rode the tiny pony only once for less than ten minutes! The whole day! When I asked my daughter why so short, she said that the counselors really wanted to leave enough time for everyone to eat their snacks.
Terrible camp for young kids -- they'd be better off by themselves at the pool rather than being ignored by the counselors here.
Plain and simple: Do not waste your money on this barn. I took my niece there for a lesson, in which I was completely ripped off for some bogus "evaluation". Their trainers have no true knowledge of horsemanship or correct riding. Their horses are CLEARLY overworked and it is almost abusive. When we walked around the tiny little stalls they were gross, I did not even walk in them after the first stall seeing the condition they were in. We left promptly and we are never to return. If you even consider wasting money at this barn you may as well shred it as that would be putting it to a better use. If you google " barns in 'your town' " on Google, you will find one million and one better options.
The entire staff -office, yard, rangers- is extremely helpful and supportive. The place is very organized and the horses are fabulous. Definitely NOT overworked, just the opposite!
The owner is courteous and spares no effort to make everyone feel welcomed. We'll be back.
I bought a riding coupon from Living Social and redeemed it in late October. The facility is very well kept, the horses are in great shape, and the staff was very accommodating. I really enjoyed myself. Not only did I have a great trail ride, I decided to sign my daughter up for a private lesson. She ended up taking three in November and we have since signed up for winter troop. The instructor (forget her name...B something) was very good, not just as a horse instructor but as a teacher in general. I grew up around horses and know a thing or two. I appreciated the experience of this instructor and how she helped my daughter. For anyone interested in trail rides, the trails are very well kept and the trail ride is lovely. I was very impressed with the facility and the people. And, having grown up with horses, I know it's not always easy to deal with horse temperment as well as the people who think they can ride them. Kudos to the Seton Hackney barn.
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