While I was staying at Bishop Lake Campground, I drove through the equestrian campground because I thought it sounded so cool to tow your horse to have as a camping companion. I then drove by the nearby riding stables just to check it out and wound up not being able to resist one of their trail rides. I've only been on a horse a few times in my life, but always enjoyed it, so I was happy to have this chance.
Here I am on Frosty. James, the rider next to me had never been on a horse before today!
I was especially glad to get to meet one of the owners, Christy Wilson. I had talked to her mom, Gina, the day before, and loved the story she told me about how they bought Christy her first horse and saddle for $500 when she was 12 – and "look at her now!"
I'm always a sucker for hearing of a woman following her dreams, so I felt blessed to meet and hear Christy's. She told me she had always mostly rode by herself, so she wanted to create a riding club so people could enjoy riding together, including having horses to rent for people who didn't have their own.
She got a booth at a fair to sign people up for her riding club idea. Nobody signed up at that point, but lots of people asked for lessons. At first she said she wouldn't give lessons because she was self-taught and had never had formal lessons herself. But since no one was signing up for the club, she finally changed her sign to say "Lessons!" and people started coming around. She said she figured she could just teach them what she knew from her own experiences and love of horses.
She shared with me that before having the gumption to go for her true dream and make a living doing it, she "did computer stuff because I was good at it, not because I loved it." She finally took the plunge and "decided to do what I loved and just make it work!"
Christy with some of the kids who are glad she did!
Now in her 5th year of owning Brighton Riding Stable, her passion and love for what she does is evident just from being around her and watching her with the kids that are taught here, as well as summer camps they can attend from beginner to advanced levels. And their beaming smiles confirm this was a great dream and wonderful idea, Christy!
She did say making her dream a reality was harder work than expected, but also more rewarding than she had even hoped for – a fair trade in my book…
The horse-eye view from Frosty. She was a great horse and responded so easily – how could I not fall in love?
Our trail guide was Caitlin, and I couldn't help falling in love with her a bit, also. After all, she has the same name as my granddaughter and is about the same age. 19 now, she's been riding since she was 5 and has worked here for 2 months. She was so sweet and sincere as she said "This is the most fun I've had being around horses since I started. Everyone here is just so great!" You were major in making my experience great also, Caitlin! I really enjoyed hearing of her love for Michigan and all the benefits of living here. Great PR representative for the state here, that's for sure!
Here are James with his girlfriend Brooke and their visiting friend, Christina, both very experienced riders. At the end of the ride, I asked him how he liked it and he said "I can't wait to do this again!" That's a great recommendation, and I agree.
This is a site at the nearby Brighton – Equestrian Campground. Rustic facilities, with some open and some very wooded, shaded spots with an 18 mile riding trail adjacent.
The full hookups for horses – they seemed like happy campers…
|General Campground Information:|
144 Total Sites – Campground Site Map showing layout (no 50 amp service available as of 2012)
Make a Reservation Online. Campsites may be reserved up to 6 months in advance of arrival date. The beachfront sites go immediately, so be quick!
Reviews from other RVers: RVParkReviews.com
|All Michigan Miles pages about Brighton State Recreation Area:|
Inside the State Park:
Nearby Activities and Attractions:
Other Resources: Michigan Trails US
I'd love to hear your own experiences about places I've been - and what you think are "must-sees" - and I really value any suggestions and feedback from readers, so please let me have your 2 cents in Comments below: