I recently had the opportunity to check out one of the best-known horse riding beaches in the South West when I covered a beach ride at Brean near Burnham on Sea in North Somerset.
Held during half term, this social ride was put on by Seavington Pony Club and attracted a nice turnout, considering the day was cold, very damp and pretty gloomy.
Just shows that a bit of British weather never stops people from heading to the beach!
I wasn’t sure what to expect but I’d heard lots of great reports about the area. What I REALLY wasn’t expecting though was to be parking right on the sand, directly on the beach itself – at HIGH TIDE!
After parking on the beach and being pretty unsure about that, the trailers and lorries started to arrive and they too were on the beach… phew, I thought, I’m not going nuts…. Or we all are!
Smiling Pony Clubbers started to appear, rushing to meet each other, chatting away and pulling on their wet weather gear as the sea mists turned into harsh rain.
Brean, and its neighbour Berrow, together run for about 4 miles, which is utterly thrilling for any horse rider, but great care is needed as there are some very marshy areas that you can quickly & easily sink into! It’s best to only ride just after high tide.
After some initial acclimatising to the sand and the lapping sea, two groups were formed, a group for smaller riders & ponies and a group for the older riders. One group headed left one group headed right.
One of the rules for this beach is no cantering between certain points, basically the parking area. Wooden breakers in the sea could be seen at either end of this area and were our markers to the restriction.
This was going to be interesting for me as it meant any cantering would stop before they hit the restricted area, which was about ¼ mile apart from each other! I needed to time this right, work out (hope/pray) which group would be back first – shoot them and then leg it down ¼ mile of beach on the wet sand, in the rain, to the other end and hopefully catch the other group!
As I stood in the rain keeping an eye on both directions the smell of bacon cooking started to permeate the air… You can ALWAYS rely on a Pony Club mum to be fully prepared!
Thankfully I timed it right got the 2 groups cantering. In total the ride lasted just over an hour and both groups came back full of smiles, plastered in wet stuff and with bright red rosy cheeks. Not one naughty pony was discussed & everyone still on board – perfect result!
So much fun, for all, the weather 😀
Oh how I wish I’d had the chance to ride on the beach in my Pony Club days!
Beach Ride Vlog
Have a fabulous week!