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2023 Spring Events

Escalante Mountains Campout & Rides

Friday, June 23 through Monday June 26, 2023

Group Rides on Saturday & Sunday


Horse Creek is a canyon on the western rim of the Aquarius Plateau, which is the highest timber plateau in North America at ~11,000 ft. This part of the plateau is called the ‘Escalante Mountains’ on most maps, albeit located much closer to Bryce Canyon than the town of Escalante. Most of the trails along Horse Creek and surrounding forest are dirt with some cobbles. For those seeking rock, side trails find various routes through 2,000 foot limestone walls carved out of the same formation as Bryce Canyon. From basecamp, we will ride through piñon-juniper that has largely been shattered by a Forest Service mastication project, up into Ponderosa pine forest, then spruce and aspen mixed with fir, and bristlecone.


Our basecamp and parking area for large rigs will be a flat circle at the bottom of Horse Creek on Dixie NF at ~7,700 ft. Smaller rigs that can handle ditches may find camping areas farther up the canyon. (FYI, parking/camping in a particular spot is limited to 14 days on Dixie NF.) The Lee family’s Horse Creek Ranch is located a few miles up the road and we will truck spring water from the ranch to keep stock tanks and trailer/camper tanks filled at the basecamp and at other campsites. Wifi, phone charging, and an outhouse are available at our off-grid cabin. When riding through our ranch, use gates located off to to the side of Horse Creek Road, which is impassable due to cattle guards.


When: June 23 through June 26 2023. Come for all or just a couple days

Time: Please RSVP to let us know so that water will be available. A barbecue dinner will be held at the basecamp ~7-9 PM on Friday 23 June. A mounted breakfast will be hosted at Horse Creek Ranch at 9:00 AM on Saturday 24 June and 9:00 AM on Sunday 25 June. ***These breakfast meetings are required for anyone joining a group ride on that day.***

Where: Meet at Horse Creek turnout 37.87681,-11195988

What: Daily rides on the Griffon Top and Horse Creek segments of the Great Western Trail (mostly non-motorized) and adjacent trails.

Cost: Free. 

Stalls Available: A limited number of corral panel stalls (12’x12') are available 23-26 June and can be reserved in advance for $100. The panels will be set up near your trailer and broken down when you leave. Contact David to reserve.

Open To: Members only. You can join through our website at   

RSVP & Questions: Please contact David Lee ( to let us know you are coming, as well as some information about the size of your rig, number of horses/mules, and likely arrival date/time as known.

How To Get There: From Utah Route 89, south of Panguitch & north of Hatch, go east on Highway 12 to John's Valley Road. Turn northeast and travel ~17 miles to Steed Ranch Road, marked by a huge ranch entrance gate. Turn right (east) and travel 1.1 miles on Steed Ranch to Sweetwater Ranch Road. Turn right, southeast  and go 1/2 mile to Horse Creek Road. Turn left (east) on Horse Creek Road (FS 135). Go 1.1 mile south on Horse Creek to the parking area.

This parking area near the bottom of Horse Creek will serve as our basecamp. Access from John’s Valley Road as detailed above is on asphalt, gravel, then ~1/8 mile of dirt with a few small ditches that should be passable for longer trailers. The parking area is about 30 yards in diameter, allowing space for large rigs to park and turn around. As always, be mindful of the cattle guards, which are typically at entrances to private land (e.g., Sweetwater Ranch, Horse Creek Ranch).


Mt Charleston South Loop Water Haul

mid July or mid August 2023

This will be a single day water haul for the Friends of Nevada Wilderness trail crew. We need to get four 20 liter jugs of water up to the South Loop ridge. Monday, July 10 looks like a likely water haul date if snowmelt allows the crew to work July14-19 or a water haul on Monday, August 21 as a weather fallback date for the crew to work August 25-30. More details will be available after the specific date has been selected. Water drop coordinates will be 36.238382, -115.649171.

Eldorado Canyon Ride & BBQ April 1, 2023


This will be a single day ride followed by a BBQ meal. Nothing like riding Eldorado Canyon with the spring flowers in bloom.  

We will meet at coordinates  35.7112489 - 114.8065335.

Be in the saddle ready to ride out at 10am. Horsemen may want to arrive Friday and overnight just for the fun of it. More details as we get closer to the date.

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Pine Creek Gravel Haul

Saturday, February 25, 2023 7am

POSTPONED by Bureau of Land Management

  • Participants will meet in the Red Rock Loop Exit parking lot at 7am. 

  • Riders will bring their own mount capable of leading a loaded pack mule on multiple round trips to Pine Canyon in Red Rock.

  • Loaders, dumpers and stock holders are also needed and do not require bringing your own mount. These activities are on the ground and are essential to the project completion.

    Please let us know you are going to participate and in what role by emailing or sending a text to Rick at 702 232-7387. This will allow us to balance the manpower over the multiple tasks. You must be a 2023 dues paid member to participate. 













Snowy Trail Ride. Saturday January 7, 2023

Postponed due to Snow Melt

There is snow on the southwest mountains in Mountain Springs and more on the way Thursday. By Saturday highway 160 should be completely clear making mountain access easy for vehicles and trailers. This is an opportunity to have you and your horse experience riding on snow covered trails. 


The tentative plan for Saturday is to meet at the Maverick Ranch and be mounted up and trailing out at 11am. We will trail ride through the forest and mountain meadows for one to three hours, depending on what the group wants to do. Rick will lead the ride because he knows where the trails are even under snow. Upon arriving back at Maverick Ranch we will provide the horses with alfalfa/orchard mix feed and water while we all spend some time in the ranch house with something warm to eat and drink. I can't think of a better way to start my new horse year than this!!



What: BCBCH Snow Trail Ride and Get Together

Who: Back Country Horsemen Members in Good Standing. (2023 Dues Paid), or pay when you get here.

Where: Maverick Ranch, 9570 Mule Deer Drive, Mountain Springs, NV 89161

When: January 7, 2023, Appx 10am to 4pm

Attire: Dress really warm. Insulated pants, heavy coat or duster, layers, hat, warm gloves, wool socks.

Parking: Limited. RSVP highly recommended. Depending on your trailer size and truck drive train you will either come all the way up to the ranch or park 1/4 mile away on the access road adjacent to highway 160.

Contact: Rick Schmalz, 702 232-7387,

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Pine Creek Canyon Update

During a recent phone conversation with our local BLM Representative John Allen discovered the following:

There have been some concerns that changes may be in the wind to change equestrian access to BLM areas, especially in Red Rock.

1st, there was a notice about The Harris Springs area that had been burned over in the Carpenter one fire and has not yet recouped, mainly due to lack of rain. As a result the closure will continue.


2nd, some riders reported that they were told that they could not ride the Pine Creek canyon trail in Red Rock. Investigation shows that this trail has been closed to equestrian use, due to the high amount of foot traffic, for at least 7-8 years. But there was no direction specific to that trail given. So, we need to honor that for now.


3rd, They announced decisions for public comment coming this month. These were based on a previous meeting (ZOOM) which I attended last year with the result in no changes to equestrian use in the Calico Basin areas. As well as no additional bike trails. What we will see is the construction of a paved jogging path paralleling Hwy 159 from Charleston Ave. to Hwy 160. I have invited Josh to attend a meeting with BCHA in January so our members can get 1st hand info and make suggestions .


BCHNVB Past President   John Allen

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