Riding at night can be extremely dangerous, and should always be done with caution.? However, should you find yourself caught after the sun goes down, or if you are intent on taking your horse out for a moonlit ride, it is important to be prepared.? Have a flashlight with you, or even better, a headlamp worn on your helmet.? Make sure that your horse is used to the flashlight, and don?t shine it into his face.? Have reflectors on your clothing, and also on your horse?s saddle and bridle, and wear light-colored outerwear.? Do not ride on roadways unless it cannot be avoided ? a dark horse and rider are extremely hard for motorists to see.? Ride with a buddy, and make sure you stay together and that you?ve told someone where you are going to be riding.? Ride in areas that you know well, and try to stay where there is at least some light from the moon.? Keep your horses to a walk, and be aware that although your horse can see better than you can in the dark, the world will still look different to him, and he may spook more than usual.? Wildlife typically are more active after the sun goes down, so carry bells to make some noise, and keep to well-traveled trails.?
The best way to enjoy a ride under the full moon is in an outdoor arena, where your horse is safely contained and help is close at hand should you fall off.? Although the appeal of night riding may be strong, always consider safety first, both for you and your horse.