Due to poor trail condition (Trails are closed at Stephens Forest) and rains, heat and humidity forecast for this weekend the Iowa Horse Council Trail Ride scheduled for this weekend will have to be cancelled.  We hope that we will be able to plan another in the Fall.  Check back periodically for new information.


Attention All Artists!

by admin on July 20, 2015

The Iowa Horse Council is looking for an artistic interpretation of its theme for the 2016 Iowa Horse Fair – “Some of My Best Friends Are Horses!”

All artwork must be:

  • Suitable for adapting for use on posters, tee-shirts, and all other promotional material for the Iowa Horse Fair.
  • Original
  • Submitted digitally by email to rollwood.ls@gmail.com   by deadline of September 1, 2015

All entries will be judged on:

  • Originality
  • Interpretation of theme, “Some of My Best Friends Are Horses!”
  • Visual impact.

Winner will be determined by the 12 members of the Iowa Horse Fair Committee.

Winner will receive $250 and have their name recognized in the 2016 Iowa Horse Fair Program and all other materials where the artwork is displayed.


Iowa Horse Council Trail Ride/Camp Out

by admin on July 19, 2015

You are invited to the Iowa Horse Council Trail Ride-Campout! Meet us at Stephens Forest, July 25-26 at 10am on the 25th for two days of various trail rides, and a potluck on Saturday evening. This will be an informal and relaxed gathering, so please invite your riding buddies, as the weekend is open to members and nonmembers alike, who want to join in. If you want to reserve a camp spot check out: http://iowastateparks.reserveamerica.com/). If you are just thinking about joining us for the potluck on Saturday, anytime after 4:30 most of us be ready to eat or ride all evening or just sit around the campfire and tell stories (but come anytime!) We will see you there! (In case of rain or trail closures, the ride will be rescheduled)


Wendy Murdoch Clinic

by admin on May 19, 2015

Join Wendy Murdoch for a 3-day clinic, June 5, 6,7 at Kruidenier Second Chance Arena, Animal Rescue League of Iowa

Wendy MurdochWendy Murdoch has ridden since childhood in a variety of disciplines including Hunters, Dressage, Eventing, and Reining. In 1984 while working towards her PhD in Equine Biomechanics, Wendy incurred a severe riding accident. The accident changed the course of her life from theoretical study to applied biomechanics for both horse and rider. As a result Wendy has been teaching internationally for over 18 years. Her goal is to make riding more enjoyable and fundamentally simple by showing her students how to achieve what great riders do naturally.

Wendy holds a Master’s Degree in Equine Reproductive Physiology from the University of Kentucky (1986). Her background includes intensive study with Linda Tellington-Jones, Founder of TEAM®; an apprenticeship in 1992 with Sally Swift, Founder of Centered Riding®; Dr. Joyce Harman, holistic veterinarian and noted authority on saddle fitting; Bettina Drummond, the only authorized representative of the Nuno Oliveira School in North America

Wendy has traveled to Europe to further her education by attending the Global Dressage Forum (2004) in Tilburg, The Netherlands and had the opportunity to work with Arthur Kottas-Heldenberg, Retired First Chief Rider of the Spanish Riding School, considered the best Dressage rider in Europe.

In addition to her teaching, Wendy takes time to write. Her articles have appeared in numerous magazines including Dressage & CT, Equus, Practical Horseman, The Trail Less Traveled, USDF Connections and Eclectic Horseman. Wendy has written many books as well, check them out here!:


Read more about Wendy on her website:


For More Information Please Contact Kay Shiverick at 515-360-2465 kayshiverick@gmail.com


Whitney-DavisWe congratulate Whitney Davis, the trails coordinator for the Iowa DNR Parks, along with crewmen Pete Englund (crew foreman) and Tim Wermers (field admin and logistics) for the Iowa DNR AmeriCorps Trail Crew.  The Coalition for Recreational Trails has chosen the Iowa DNR AmeriCorps Trail Crew project as the winner of the CRT’s Annual Achievement Award for outstanding use of Recreational Trails Program funds in the Youth Conservation/Service Corps and Community Outreach category. The national award will be presented on June 10th in Washington, D.C. at a special awards ceremony on Capitol Hill.

American Trails sponsors Coalition for Recreational Trails awards, and is a national, nonprofit organization working on behalf of all trail interests, including hiking, bicycling, mountain biking, horseback riding, water trails, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, trail motorcycling, ATVs, snowmobiling and four-wheeling.  The Iowa Horse Council is a member of American Trails, as is the American Horse Council, Back Country Horsemen of America, and the Equestrian Land Conservation Resource.

Whitney-Davis-2Davis’ program emphasizes community service based environmental learning for its exponential land stewardship benefits. The DNR trails program utilizes an AmeriCorps labor force with roots in the Civilian Conservation Corps to build and maintain state parks trails.    Davis has been with the program for nine years.   She worked in sustainable agriculture for ten years prior, and has coordinated various AmeriCorps sustainable energy, agriculture, and environmental programs.  She has supported and been an active participant in the IHC annual Equestrian and Soft Trails Conference for two years, presenting “Trails Maintenance 101,” and showing before and after photos of the Trail Crew’s work and highlighting successful soft trail maintenance techniques which are applied statewide.

Iowa state parks that include equestrian trails are:

  • Brushy Creek State Recreation Area – Webster County
  • Elk Rock State Park – Marion County
  • Lake of Three Fires State Park – Taylor County
  • Nine Eagles State Park – Decatur County
  • Shimek State Forest – Van Buren County
  • Stephens State Forest – Lucas County
  • Volga River State Recreation Area – Fayette County
  • Waubonsie State Park – Fremont County
  • Yellow River State Forest – Allamakee County

Davis also oversees the DNR website for equestrian trails at http://www.iowadnr.gov/Recreation/Equestrian.aspx, where you can find a number of parks and forests suited to your needs, including some with equestrian campgrounds.  This webpage also includes an equestrian trail riding state map and brochure: Guide to State and County Managed Equestrian Trails .  Current state park and trail closings can also be found at iowadnr.gov/parkclosures.

Equestrians in Iowa are grateful to Davis for her service to the state of Iowa, and her leadership of the Iowa DNR AmeriCorps Trail Crew to preserve parks, educate, maintain, and keep equestrian trails healthy and safe to ride.  Congratulations, Whitney and crew on a well-deserved award!


Iowa Horse Fair 2015: Let Us “Equitain” You!

April 8, 2015

Click Here for Complete 2015 Iowa Horse Fair Schedule The 31st Annual Iowa Horse Fair will take place April 10, 11, &12 at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines, Iowa. This event is designed to educate horse owners about ways to care for and train their horses and also to entertain the general public […]

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IHC Equestrian Soft Trails Conference

April 8, 2015

Do you wish there were more horse trails in Iowa?  Now, in Jasper, Madison, Marion and Warren Counties, there can be!  Now is the time to get involved! The Iowa Heartland Resource, Conservation and Development, Inc. (www.ihrcd.org) is looking for equestrian input on development of a trails master plan for Jasper, Madison, Marion, and Warren […]

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Corps Taking Public Comment on Draft Lake Red Rock Master Plan and Environmental Assessment

April 8, 2015

KNOXVILLE, Iowa – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Rock Island District, asks the public to provide comment on the FINAL DRAFT of the Lake Red Rock Master Plan and Environmental Assessment. The master plan, which was last updated in 1976, conceptually establishes and guides the development, administration, maintenance, preservation, enhancement, and management of all […]

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