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Lord Stirling Stable

256 S. Maple Avenue, Basking Ridge, NJ • 908 766-5955

Musical Stall Rider with Horse
Rider leading horse with view of the stables in the background
Rider and Horse crossing a stream

General information
Lord Stirling Stable offers a full complement of riding activities for riders of most ages and abilities. The Stable is located at 256 South Maple Avenue in Basking Ridge, and the office is open daily from 9am to 5pm or may be reached by calling 908 766-5955. All riders are required to wear an ASTM/SEI approved equestrian helmet and shoes or boots with hard, smooth soles and a moderate and definite heel. Helmets and boots may be rented for $4 each. Age and activity-based weight limits apply to riding programs. Somerset County residents are required to show proof of residency. For additional information, please visit our website at

Lead Line
Lead Line is the perfect way to introduce children to riding. Adults may rent a pony or small, gentle horse for a half hour and lead their child(ren) around the outdoor pony ring or the covered Pony Pavilion A stableworker will demonstrate the proper and simple technique for leading the pony/horse. Children must be old enough to sit up and hold onto the saddle without assistance. An approved equestrian helmet is provided. Lead Line is available daily; please call for hours. The fee is $11 for Somerset County residents and $13 for out-of-county residents on weekdays; and $12 and $14, respectively, on weekends.

Pony Parties
An unforgettable way to celebrate a birthday or other special occasion is unbelievably simple with a Lord Stirling Stable Pony Party! Our two-hour package includes the use of two ponies for the first 45 minutes, plus a staff member to supervise. Adults from the party lead the ponies. Guests spend the remaining time in the climate-controlled party room. The base fee is $175 for Somerset County residents and $250 for out-of-county residents for up to 12 children. Additional fee for each added child. Call or stop by the stable at least two weeks prior to the desired date to make your reservation! Pony Parties are available seven days a week. There is a maximum of 30 people (adults and children combined) allowed in the party room.

Group Trail Rides and Hayrides
Lord Stirling Stable has unique program options available for group activities. Youth groups, businesses, clubs, and other organizations can design a team-building exercise with a difference. Families and friends may want to try something out of the ordinary, just for fun. Experience some of the 18 miles of beautiful equestrian-use trails from the back of a horse or from our tractor-pulled hay wagon. No 'horse experience' is required!

Group rides for adults and youth (ages 12 and older, and age 9 when accompanied by a parent/guardian) include a brief lesson with a certified instructor who will then guide your one-hour trail ride. Guided rides are available on Sundays and weekday afternoons. The flat rate for 10 riders or fewer is $330 ($300 for youth under the age of 18.)

Tractor-pulled hayrides are an excellent option for those who would love a trail experience but are not sure about riding a horse. They are also an option if your group is very large (up to 30 people) or if there is a broad age range to accommodate. Hayrides may be arranged for Saturday and Sunday afternoons; a limited number of Friday and Saturday evening hayrides are also available.

By horse or by wagon, the trails of Lord Stirling Stable are definitely worth a visit. For more information and pricing call 908 766-5955.

Spring Group Riding Lessons
English Saddle riding lessons are offered from beginner through advanced levels for youth and adults. Trail, jumping, and various specialized flat classes are also available. Classes are scheduled one hour a week for 10 consecutive weeks. Adults also have the option of a five week session. Please refer to the online program registration section for details.

Registration opens on Saturday, March 21, with lessons beginning Monday, April 6 and continuing through June 20.

The schedule of classes are posted on-line two weeks prior to the opening day of registration. Youth must be a minimum age of 9 at time of registration. Riders must be under 225 pounds for flat classes and under 200 pounds for jumping classes. Prospective students with riding experience need to be evaluated for a classification card prior to the registration date; a $12 fee applies. Please call the stable office for more information. Lesson fees for one hour classes are:

Somerset County Residents
Out of County
Flat class
Jumping Class

Students who do not reside in Somerset County may purchase an annual Non-County I.D. Card for $150.00. This entitles each individual card holder to a discounted rate on riding lessons. Savings multiply with each class registration. Please call the Stable office for more information.

Horse Care Workshops
Horse Care workshops offer the opportunity to gain experience and confidence around horses. Each program builds upon the one before it to logically expand students' knowledge in a safe, enjoyable environment. In Horse Care Workshop 101, participants learn the proper way to safely handle, groom, and tack a horse. Horse Care Workshop 102 introduces students to more advanced topics such as nutrition, clipping, bandaging, and basic conformation, and the important role the farrier and veterinarian play in a horse's life. Horse Care Workshop 103 further develops care and management skills while increasing knowledge of equine behavior. The Workshops are open to participants ages 9 and older, and are offered on five consecutive Saturdays. Winter Horse Care Workshop 101 is scheduled for January 3 - 31 from 1pm-3pm. Winter Horse Care Workshops 102 and 103 take place February 7 – March 7, with section 102 meeting from 10am–noon and 103 from 1pm-3pm. Students may participate in Workshops 102 and 103 concurrently. The cost is $55 for Somerset County residents and $82.50 for non-residents. Registrations will be accepted until the first day of class, space permitting. This program does not include riding.

Horse Herd Observation
This is a 45 minute program that introduces participants to basic horse psychology and herd behaviors. Participants will observe horses in group and individual pasture settings. Experienced staff will discuss body language of the horse, how to determine which horse is the herd leader, which horses tend to be more dominant, and who the followers are. Students will learn what actions constitute "horse play" and when horses are being aggressive. Recommended for participants age 9 and older. 7:30am Check-in, Program 7:45am – 8:30am. Observations are scheduled for January 25, February 15, March 15, and May 31. The fee for this program is $5, pre-registration required.

Pony Pals Club
The Pony Pals Club is a family oriented program that will
introduce young children to ponies. Age appropriate activities encourage parent-child interaction. For ages 2-4 years, there is a 30-minute parent-child program that includes a pony story, game activity, and pony ride. The fee for this program is $5 per child/parent pair. Additional siblings 2-9 years old are $3 each. This program is offered on January 31, March 28, and April 25 from 10am – 10:30am, and February 28 from 3:15pm – 3:45pm. Pre-registration is required.

For ages 5-7 years, there is a 60 minute parent-child program that includes a pony story, game activity and/or craft, and a pony ride. The fee for this program is $10 per child/parent pair. Additional siblings 5-9 years old are $5 each. This program is offered on January 31, March 28, and April 25 from 11am – 12noon, and February 28 from 9am – 10am. Pre-registration is required.

Meet the Ponies Program
This youth program targets horse enthusiasts between 7 and 9 years old. It is ideal for scout troops and other youth groups. The 90-minute program introduces participants to hands-on experience with ponies. Under the guidance of experienced barn staff, students will be able to groom a pony, learn about what ponies eat, and the work involved in taking care of a pony. Participants will also make a horse-related craft and take part in a pony ride. The Fee is $15 per child. Additional siblings 7-9 years old are $10 each. Programs are offered January 24 from 10am-11:30am, February 15 and April 11 from 9am – 10:30am, and March 14 from 1pm – 3:30pm. Pre-registration is required.

Apprentice Instructor Program
Designed for riders at the A/Advanced-Intermediate 2 levels and higher, participants will learn what it takes to become a Riding Instructor. For the 10-week lesson session, students will work with Senior Instructors one hour per week to learn how to become an effective teacher. Participants must be nominated by their Instructor and enrolled in a current riding class to participate in this program. The fee is $150. The session runs from March 30 to June 8. For more information call 908 766-5955.

Horse Rentals
Riders who can post the trot and are secure and comfortable at the canter may rent horses for a one hour ride in our large indoor ring, two outdoor rings, or 18 miles of well-maintained trails. Riders must be at least 9 years old (12 years old for trail riding) and weigh less than 225 pounds. Trail guides are available on Sundays. Groups depart every half hour with a minimum of two people.

Hours for hacking vary and may be cancelled due to extreme weather conditions. Please call the stable office at 908
766-5955 ext. 32 for daily information. Riders choose horses on a first come, first served basis. Hourly hacking fees are as follows:

Weekdays - Somerset County residents $23.00
  Out-of-County residents $30.50
Weekends - Somerset County residents $26.00
  Out-of-County residents $34.50
Ten ride hack books    
  Somerset County Residents $218.50
  Out-of-County residents $289.50

Private Horses
For an annual fee, people who have their own horses may enjoy the trails or outdoor rings, weather and ground conditions permitting. The fee for a Trail Permit is $20 per horse per calendar year for Somerset County residents and $32 for non-residents. Single day passes are also available for a fee of $10 for Somerset County residents and $15 for non-residents. The spacious indoor ring and seasonal cross-country course may also be used for $15 and $20 per hour, respectively. A current negative Coggins (within twelve months) is required.

Family Fun Day
One of the largest, longest-running, and free community events offered on the grounds of Lord Stirling Stable, the 32nd Annual Family Fun Day is scheduled for May 3, 2015. Free pony rides and hayrides are offered from 10am-12pm, and again from 1pm–3pm. The festival atmosphere of the day is enhanced by child-friendly arcade games and other activities. Local vendors and organizations will be on hand distributing information, performing demonstrations, and offering goods for purchase. Equestrian students hope you'll cheer for them as they play gymkhana-style games on horseback for fun and ribbons. The Friends of Lord Stirling Stable co-sponsors this event, offering food, beverages, and clothing and gift items for sale. For more information, please call the Stable office.

Room Rental
Lord Stirling Stable has a large room overlooking the indoor riding arena available for rental. Amenities include bleachers, tables, and chairs. Audio/visual equipment and limited kitchen facilities are also available. Please call the Stable at 908 766-5955 for prices and availability.

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     • Directions
     • Adult Release & Waiver
     • Minor Release & Waiver
     • Emergency Medical Form - Adult
     • Emergency Medical Form - Minor
     • Epinephrine Authorization
     • Park Map
     • Park Brochure
     • Riding Lesson Brochure
     • Class Cancellation, Make-Up Lesson &
       Refund Information
     • Updated 2012 Fee and Policy Changes

     • New and Special Classes
     • Springr Registration Information
     • Spring Adult Evening Schedule
     • Spring Adult Mornig and Saturday
     • Spring Junior Schedule
     • Summer Workshops

Friends of Lord Stirling Stable
are friends indeed


black horse logo

Friends of Lord Stirling Stable

The Friends of Lord Stirling Stable (FLSS) is a 501(c)(3) organization that supports the equestrian activities of the Somerset County Park Commission Lord Stirling Stable. By contributing their ideas, volunteering their time, and donating revenue generated from sponsoring events, the Friends help provide a continuous and expanding program of activities. Additional information about the Friends and these events is available on the internet at Registration for FLSS events is not currently available online.

Dog Walks
Dog walks along the equestrian trails are led on Saturdays. The traditional New Year's Day "Meet New Friends" Dog Walk will be held on Thursday, January 1, 2015 at 1:30pm. Regular Saturday dog walks begin at 10:30am, except May 23 through August 29 when the walks will begin at 9:30am. The cost is $3 per dog.

Horseback riding clinics are offered throughout the year. Please visit for more information.

Dressage Show
This is a great opportunity for the experienced or green horse and rider to perform a Dressage Test in a fun, no-pressure environment. Eleven divisions will be separated into two sections – one includes those riders with privately owned horses and the other includes Lord Stirling Stable students on school horses. The Dressage Show is scheduled for April 19, 2015. Please visit for further information.

Spring Pleasure Drive
The Friends of Lord Stirling Stable invite drivers to guide their horses and carriages along the well-groomed trails of Lord Stirling Stable on April 19, 2015. Teams will depart between 9am and 11am. Weather permitting, a 'just for fun' cones course may be available. Visit for more information.

Spring Nature Ride
This leisurely horseback ride at a walk along the trails is set for April 26 with check-in time at 7am. The hour long ride is 7:30am - 8:30am. This ride provides individuals with little or no English saddle riding experience the opportunity to enjoy the trails and nature from the back of a horse. The fee is $30 for Friends of Lord Stirling Stable members and $35 for non-members. Pre-registration is required; please see the Friends' website for more information and forms.

Private Horse Hunter Pace
The Annual Spring Private Horse Hunter Pace will be held at Lord Stirling Stable on Sunday, April 12, 2015. Teams of two or three competitors will ride a well-marked course approximately 6 - 8 miles in length. Thirty to 40 fences vary in height up to three feet. All jumps have ample room to go around for riders who prefer to stay on the flat. Western riders are encouraged to participate.

Participants may register between 9am - 1pm on the day of the ride. All riders must wear an ASTM/SEI approved equestrian helmet. There is ample parking for trailers. This event is co-sponsored by the Somerset County Park Commission and the Friends of Lord Stirling Stable. Please see Friends website for more information.

   E-mail Lord Stirling Stable with any questions or    comments.