Horses are a unique ministry partner. Our certified wranglers desire to connect our horses with students allowing relationships to develop which provides an avenue for sharing the Gospel. Through the exploration of local trails, students are challenged in their horsemanship skills while immersing themselves in the beauty of the cascades. Our Mustang ministry allows a variety of horse experiences that include 2-4 hour horse rides, overnight camping trips, and year-round bible study and horsemanship courses.
2-4 Hour Horseback Rides
Immerse yourself in God’s creation from a different perspective: high in the saddle!
Our experienced wranglers provide a professional atmosphere and will guide you straight from the barn onto miles of trails through the canopied forest. Experience mountain meadows bright with seasonal wildflowers, ride along with parts of Beaver Creek, and see breathtaking views of the beautiful Cascade Mountains.
Our ranch horses are ridden without bits and are shoeless. We train our horses using natural horsemanship. Our experienced wranglers will give an instructional demonstration on horseback followed by a short ride in the arena to help you connect with your horse and ensure an enjoyable riding experience.
- Age: 11+
- Weight Limit: 250 lbs
- Season: May – September
- Length: 2 – 4 hours
- Group Size: 4 – 10 people
- Cost: $55 – 80 per person
Students will immerse themself in God’s creation from a different perspective: high in the saddle! Our experienced wranglers will pair each student with one of our dependable ranch horses. The week is spent exploring miles of local trails surrounding our 158-acre property at Stonewater. Students will ride through the canopied forest along sections of Beaver Creek, experience mountain meadows bright with seasonal wildflowers, and see breathtaking views of the beautiful Cascade Mountains. Students will be challenged not only in the saddle but in their personal faith and relationship with Jesus. Some may hear about Jesus for the first time.
Students will learn basic horse care and have the opportunity to meet our Mustangs who will eventually be a part of our string. They will pitch their tents at our Cottonwood campsite which is just across the creek from the barn or choose to sleep under the stars!
Our ranch horses are ridden without bits and are shoeless. We train our horses using natural horsemanship. Our experienced wranglers will give an instructional demonstration on horseback followed by a short ride in the arena to help each student connect with their horse and ensure an enjoyable riding experience for the week. If inclement weather arises, we have a covered arena. We encourage students to ask questions, engage with one another and our staff, and be prepared to learn as we experience this amazing adventure together.
Fantastic meals and evening discussions around the campfire help to tie together memories from each day that will last a lifetime. Space is provided for great conversation and spiritual growth as we share stories from the Bible that are relevant to today’s youth. We have devotional time each morning centered around God’s Word. We have lots of fun and use these adventures so that teens can discover life in Christ.
- Age: 11+
- Weight Limit: 250 lbs
- Season: May – September
- Length: 3 – 5 days
- Group Size: 6 – 10 people
- Cost: $400 per person (additional costs for off-site camps)
Bible Study and Horsemanship
Our focus is ministering to local youth who have the desire to pursue God and learn Natural Horsemanship. All skill or experience levels are welcome. Our certified wranglers will teach students basic ground and riding skills with trained horses. Using lessons geared toward horsemanship skills, making connection points with youth illustrating life skills, and paralleling horsemanship with life and faith. As students’ skills progress, they may eventually be paired with one of our Mustangs in training.
The Bible study and horsemanship courses are offered during the school year with our discipleship focus on basic faith, Bible understanding, and life application. Spiritual discipleship will meet youth “where they are” regardless of their level of horsemanship. Through relational conversation, we challenge students in their personal faith and help to grow their understanding of the Bible. We also pursue FUN and FRIENDSHIP!
- Age: 11 – 18
- Weight Limit: 250 lbs
- Season: October – May
- Length: 2 hours per session (groups offered Monday’s and Saturday’s)
- Group Size: 5 students per group
- Cost: varies
About Stonewater Mustangs
The Stonewater Mustangs ministry is designed to share Christ with Northwest teens through the unique and powerful tool of building an all Mustang herd of trail horses. Pairing youth and Mustangs creates a dynamic relationship where both can learn and grow.
Stonewater Mustangs ministry reaches youth within the Central Washington area through on-going, year-round discipleship by offering bible study and horsemanship courses during the school year. Youth from around the Northwest attend spring, summer, and fall horse adventure camps. These youth come from all backgrounds, ethnicities, and economic status. It has been asked if we plan to work with troubled youth. The answer is, youth in America today are troubled and Mustangs in America today are in trouble. We have an opportunity to help both.
Through the process of learning from and working with formerly wild BLM Mustangs, youth will have the opportunity to discover their inner selves, gain self-discipline, and learn the importance and value of yielding daily to God’s control in their lives — just as the horses must learn to yield themselves to their human’s control.
BLM Mustangs have extreme intelligence, instinct, and loyalty. Overpopulation of Mustangs on rangeland is detrimentally affecting the environment and all species that live on the range. Holding facilities are full. Horses need homes. Stonewater Mustangs vision provides an avenue for more Mustangs to be placed into private care.
Horses born in the wild have pure instincts and require those working with them to earn a place of respect, partnership, and finally trust. It is these qualities that set Mustangs apart as strong ministry teammates. The parallels of how a trainer approaches a wild horse and how God approaches us are infinite. Through being given a purpose, and a choice, Mustangs can become the mirror through which humans see their own relationship with Christ.
It helps to give me a space in which I can let everything I have been holding in go. I don’t have to be scared that a horse is going to judge me or use my words against me, yet the horse can still respond emotionally to comfort me if needed ~ Ministry Student
Our staff will equip and provide the essentials for your experience (e.g. gear, food, equipment, training, insurance) and will work with your group leader for programming and other logistical needs. In addition, our staff will provide the technical and professional skills needed to provide a safe and life-changing adventure.
Our goal is to assist you in providing a memorable experience for your group that has the opportunity to be life-transforming. Whether you are trying to create unity in your church youth group or build community in your school, group home, or youth-related organization—we are with you!
Let’s adventure together!
Do I need to have horse experience to ride?
No. We will pair you with one of our dependable ranch horses.
Do I have to wear a helmet or can I bring my own?
Helmets are required for all riders under the age of 18 and optional for adults. We provide helmets if you don’t have your own. Personal helmets must be an approved equine riding helmets. Helmets provided by Stonewater are sanitized after each use.
Is it okay to wear tennis shoes for riding?
Yes, however, boots with a smooth-soled 1” to 2” heel are preferred. Closed-toed shoes are required, no sandals or slippers.
What do I need to bring?
We have a packing list that will be shared through the booking process. Our wranglers will check all participants to make sure they are ready to go before hitting the trail.
Are there bathrooms and showers?
Lua’s are provided in Cottonwood campground, however, there are no showers. We are experiencing camping to the fullest. Students can cool off in the creek on a hot day!