Horses have been part of the Valles Caldera landscape for over 100 years. Recreational horseback riding is balanced with other recreational uses such as hiking and biking. The use of horses, mules, burros, alpacas, and llamas is permitted subject to specific authorization, provided that humane treatment is accorded the animal(s) at all times and all regulations related to animal use are strictly observed.
To ride inside the preserve, equestrians must have an equestrian permit issued by the preserve. Due to COVID-19, we now offer an electronic annual equestrian special use permit that will be valid through October 31, 2020.
Instructions on obtaining and filling out the permit:
1. Click on the link to DOWNLOAD the fillable Annual Equestrian Special Use Permit (SUP). You must DOWNLOAD it to your computer to be able to fill in your information and save it. You CANNOT fill it out online because your information will not save.
2. Open Adobe Reader on your computer and then, from within Adobe Reader, open the file that you have downloaded onto your computer.
3. Electronically fill in the required information. (The Preserve will fill in the Permit # and will sign as the Authorizing NPS Official)
4. Read and understand the "Rules and Regulations".
5. Electronically sign the SUP. (Click on the signature block and a window will pop up and lead you through the signing process.)
6. Save a copy on your computer- Change the name of the SUP file by adding your initials at the end.
7. Send an e-mail to email@example.com and attach the file that you just saved.
8. Allow up to 5-7 business days for preserve staff to process your request.
9. When you receive a return confirmation e-mail, there will be two attachments containing the SUP (signed by the Preserve), a vehicle dash permit, and a wallet permit card.
10. Print the vehicle dash permit and the wallet permit card. Sign the wallet permit card and carry it with you while you’re riding. The vehicle dash permit is to be put on your vehicles’s dash while you are riding.
For questions and concerns, please contact us at VALL_Info@nps.gov or 575-829-4100 ext 3
Riders will have to bring their own horses as the preserve does not have an equestrian concessionaire in operation. Conducting commercial activities requires a Commercial Use Authorization.
Rules of the Trail
Last updated: August 17, 2020