5/21/2013 1:43:00 PM Sisters riders enjoy new trails
By Kim McCarrel
It's always fun to find a new place to ride. And when the new trail has fabulous views, beautiful forest, great footing, and clear signage, it's even better.
Thanks to the efforts of dedicated volunteers from the Sisters Trails Alliance and Oregon Equestrian Trails, Sisters-area horseback riders can enjoy a new loop trail out of Graham Corral, a new trail segment on Peterson Ridge, and new trail markers on all of the Peterson Ridge horse trails.
Fourmile Butte Trail:
A breathtaking 360-degree view awaits you at the summit of Fourmile Butte, on Sisters Country's newest horse trail. This forested loop originates at Graham Corral, running along the southbound Metolius-Windigo Trail for a mile, then veering westward and following forest roads to Fourmile Butte. From the butte's treeless summit you'll enjoy a panorama that includes the Cascade peaks, Sisters, Bend, and Redmond.
Continue around the loop for another 2.8 miles, then turn left on the Metolius-Windigo Trail and follow it 3 miles back to Graham Corral. This delightful 10-mile loop is clearly marked with yellow diamond trail signs along the Metolius-Windigo segments and with white diamonds on the Fourmile Butte Trail segments.
Peterson Ridge Horse Trails:
Next time you saddle up to ride at Peterson Ridge, you'll see some improvements to this 20-plus-mile horse trail network. For one thing, the horse trails are now signed with white diamond trail markers along each route. In addition, plans call for the installation this fall of wooden directional signs at each trail junction. These signs will indicate destinations and distances and make it even easier to find your way around the extensive forested trail system.
The Peterson Ridge horse trails originate from the large trailer parking area on Peterson Ridge Road, just outside the southwest corner of the rodeo grounds. Pick up a map at the parking area kiosk.
The wobbly hitching rail at the Peterson Ridge Overlook has been securely reinstalled, so horses can be safely tied while their riders enjoy the scenic view and have lunch at the picnic table nearby.
Volunteers from Oregon Equestrian Trails recently completed a new single-track trail segment that connects Road 1608 with Road 200 at the base of Peterson Ridge and creates a new loop option for horseback riders. You can now ride from the forest roads at the base of the ridge to the single-track trail along the top of the ridge in three places, so you can vary your ride by creating loop trails of varying lengths.