Horsemanship was once a vital skill, much like the ability to avoid sailing off the end of the earth or the ability to discern which pizza trees were poisonous. Master an ancient art of survival with today's Groupon: for $55, you get a one-hour guided horseback trail ride for two at Westside Riding School, located at Will Rogers State Historic Park in Pacific Palisades. This Groupon does not include parking ($12).
Westside's friendly and experienced wranglers guide riders astride gentle steeds around Will Rogers State Historic Park's Inspiration Loop trail for 50 minutes of interspecies bonding and sightseeing. The beginner-level equine excursion starts at Jimmy's Barn in the historic zone, and walks its course skyward into the Santa Monica Mountains before alighting at Inspiration Point. There, eyeballs feast on stirring vistas of the Los Angeles Basin, the Pacific Ocean, and Catalina Island, and horses find inspiration to nibble more pages out of their favorite novels. All riders must wear the provided helmets, whereas long pants worn with closed-toe, low-heel shoes are encouraged. While in the park, visitors may stop by the Will Rogers ranch house, where the legendary vaudevillian lived with his wife and children, and kept ponies to help his horses feel taller. The staff at Westside recommends interested gauchos call one week in advance to reserve a spot, and point out that weekdays offer the best availability.
Westside Riding School
As owner and wrangler-in-chief at Westside Riding School, Dorte Lindegaard guides horseback expeditions and riding lessons across 180 acres of panorama-filled paths in Will Rogers State Historic Park. Trail rides depart from Jimmy's Barn and plod up mountain trails in pursuit of Inspiration Point, where riders experience spectacular views of the Los Angeles basin, the Pacific Ocean, and Catalina Island. Upon finishing the 2-mile trek and nailing their dismount, riders can visit the Will Rogers ranch house, where the celebrated humorist, actor, and horse whisperer lived with his family and talked shop with Kentucky Derby winners over gourmet oats and champagne troughs.