View Full Version : Music on the trail

Jun. 2, 2008, 10:25 PM
Ok, so I am kinda doing a spin-off of my thread in Off-Course...
Do you listen to music when you trail ride? If so, how? I have an iPod, but I can't imagine that headphones with a helmet is comfortable.
I do have a problem in general with headphones, I can't wear any type IN my ear - just too uncomfortable, so I'm looking for other ideas.

Thanks! :)

Equine Obsession
Jun. 2, 2008, 10:34 PM
I never listen to music when I'm riding. I just don't feel safe when I can't hear what's going on around me. I rely on sound to know what's up ahead and prepare for what could be spooky to my horse or slow down and call out so we don't surprise whatever is ahead of us.

I don't think I'd do it, but I'm sure having ONLY one headphone in + low volume would be much safer, if you must listen to music.

As for headphone types, my brother had the same problem and got those that hang over your ear - where glasses would - with the speaker positioned over your ear. Maybe that could help?

Jun. 2, 2008, 10:41 PM
I listen to music on trail with my mustang. We both like country and medium paced rock. Jimmy Buffet really drags his walk along. With Techno music, his mind is dreaming of running and spooking. We mainly like country...just enough beat but not too slow.

We use my cell phone with the external speaker. My horse wears ear plugs because of other noises, such as dogs.

I do not listen to music with my paso...he doesn't know what it is yet. We are working on it.

I do not like the idea of headphones. I am not able to hear other sounds that are important, like cars, dogs, snakes, etc. The speaker on the phone isn't too loud.

If you want to ride with an external speaker instead of earphones, walmart or the like have external, portable speaker systems in a padded case real cheap.

Good luck. Experiment with music choice. Music can affect you as well as horse. Try mellowing music with spooky horse & vice versa.

Good Luck.

Equine Obsession
Jun. 2, 2008, 10:45 PM
Good idea MTR!

I love the idea of an external speaker. It certainly would sound better than MY singing. And it would announce you to others on the trail! (Except for those joggers who insist on wearing headphones)

Jun. 3, 2008, 12:16 AM
I don't care for music on the trail..I'm happy with the peace and quiet and the sound of hoofbeats :)

Jun. 3, 2008, 02:01 AM
I don't have any problems with headphones, and grab my iPod and hit the trail all the time :D

Jun. 3, 2008, 12:53 PM
I was really looking for an external speaker idea...I don't plan on using it drown out noise, just add noise that I like:)
I do have the over-the-ear/around the back of the head type headphones, but sometimes they don't sit right and cause pain...can't win! :lol:

I'll check around for the cheap externals! Thanks!

Halcyon Days
Jun. 3, 2008, 02:00 PM
blech, hehe, I ride to get away from all that stuff--I want to hear my horses hoofbeats, the wind in the trees, the birds chirping, my horses breathing..........

Jun. 3, 2008, 02:49 PM
the music i hear when i ride, is the silence, the sound of hoofbeats as we walk along, the birds and other nature. Music would ruin all that for me.

i also think safety is important and if I cannot hear a cyclist riding up behind me in the state park, my horse could spook and i could end up hurt or dead.

Jun. 3, 2008, 02:52 PM
No music for us either. Have to be prepared for what ever could leap out to the bushes. When we were out on the trail riding in 5 ft high grass.. Yep the grass is up to my horse's withers out there. We had a bird erupt up under my horse's nose today. Would have caught me off guard with music.

Jun. 3, 2008, 02:54 PM
The only music I listen to while trail riding is myself -- singing the stupid little songs I've made up for each of my horses, to either get them to keep a rythm or chill out if something is spooking them. But I try to keep it to a minimum, since I can't really sing. :no: ;)

I'm with Tiempo and Halcyon Days, I just like hearing the sounds of the trail and my horse. I also hate having to fidget with something while riding. Also, we're in NVA where there is a bit of traffic on the trails -- I don't think it would be wise to not be able to hear what's coming or going.

Auventera Two
Jun. 3, 2008, 02:54 PM
No music here. The trail is my solitude. I want to hear the woodpeckers drumming, the deer bounding through the woods, the water rushing in the streams and miles and miles of hootbeats. I can listen to music in my car when stuck in trafic. Don't need it while in nature. :)

If I were listening to music the other day while riding I would have been creamed by the 4-wheelers that came around the bend. I heard them so I stopped and moved over because I knew they couldn't hear me.

Romantic Rider
Jun. 3, 2008, 04:12 PM
I dont' listen to music either. On our highstrung horses we have to concentrate too much, always have to be watching the trail, especially at an endurance ride. When things slow down in the last couple of loops, it might be nice to listen to something, but I wouldn't feel very safe, not being able to here things. And i've had my horse throw in a spook at the finish line of a 50, so I really can't ever just relax and trust her. She's a 'blower', so I get to listen to her snorting the whole ride, and there's nothing like the sound of horse hooves.

Jun. 3, 2008, 04:56 PM
the music i hear when i ride, is the silence, the sound of hoofbeats as we walk along, the birds and other nature. Music would ruin all that for me.

I agree. I am out there to escape and if you listen the woods are full of sounds. I feel too that it is unsafe to not hear what is around you.

Horse wears ear plugs???????:eek:

Jun. 3, 2008, 08:40 PM
Yes, my horse wears them each and every ride. He doesn't like the sound of dogs barking. He really gets worked up. Ear plugs = Happy horse & rider.

I ride with an external speaker from my cell phone. I have phone for safety reasons, music for entertainment value. I like music, everywhere I go. I can hear everything, dogs, birds, deer, buses, cars, trucks, turkey, etc. I haven't missed any noises. The music adds to my enjoyment....and it seems to my mushtang.

My paso is a different story. Even music coming through my speakers today set him off a little today. He was twitchy. After a few big horse flies attacking him, we had a spill. What caused it....I don't know...my fault of course. I won't do that again.

I have always enjoyed riding him without music. I tried it today. He got worked up. I will not do it again.

Each and every person has a preference. Mine is music if it is safe to do so. I really like riding my mushtang with music...adds to the enjoyment. On my paso, I really like the solitude of it.

To each their own.

Jun. 3, 2008, 08:55 PM
What is a mustang??? I know a stupid question but I would like to see a picture of him/her.

Jun. 3, 2008, 09:28 PM
What is a mustang? or Mushtang?

A mustang is a feral horse running loose on blm land in most western states.

My boy was rounded up at 2. I got him almost 6 mnths later. He is 7 now. He is great. Solid trail horse, except for the dogs. LOL. Must go back to his NV days of coyotes.

Does that answer your question?

Oh, I don't have any pics of him on this computer...I will look for some in hidden files.

Jun. 3, 2008, 09:34 PM
Enclosed is a pic of my Mustang packing a beginner, friend of mine. He looks a little tense here. It is the first time someone else rode him.

Momma's boy, Phoenix.

Jun. 3, 2008, 09:57 PM
Please don't get me wrong... I will be able to hear what is around me. I just enjoy music, and since Traveler seems to as well, someday in the future I will probably ride a trail with it. I figure other people do as well, so I was coming for suggestions. I will take all the advice to heart tho, and make sure we are very aware and solid before adding music to the trails.

Phoenix is very handsome! :)

Jun. 3, 2008, 10:03 PM
PT, thank you very much. He is very much a momma's boy. He likes me and pretty much only me. He really bebops to the music when he hears it. Most of it is drowned out from his ear plugs. But when the tempo changes, his gait reflects it. I really like riding him with music. It enhances our experience...

I can understand not all horses or people should do this...Personal preference.

Jun. 3, 2008, 10:22 PM
Enclosed is a pic of my Mustang packing a beginner, friend of mine. He looks a little tense here. It is the first time someone else rode him.

Momma's boy, Phoenix.

Nice looking horse mustangtrailrider.
Thank you

Jun. 3, 2008, 11:08 PM
No artificial music aids for me. I'm with Jazz rider on that.

We have different songs I sing for different speeds I want us to go. Riding down the Canyon or Cool Water ( Son's of the Pioneers ) are good slow walking songs. Happy Trails is the best.

For trotting we use Here comes Peter Cottontail ( with words changed to fit a horse instead of a bunny rabbit) Or Lowrider by the group War. Anything with a good 4/4 beat usually works.

For cantering our favorite is the Charge of the Light Brigade.

As a lifelong percussionist, including 13 years full time, It allows me to use my sense of time to pace my horse. Singing also helps scare the deer and other wildlife from appearing suddenly to cause a spook. When I sing, even armadillos run in fear. It also keeps other riders from crowding you too much. Try it some time, especially if your singing voice is a little off. You will get lots of trail room. Yodeling is a bit too much and should be avoided as much as possible.

Paul N. Sidio
Piper( I wish I could run faster than the speed of sound so I didn't have to hear this)
Spokane MO

Jun. 4, 2008, 07:52 AM
Welp there's trails and then theres TRAILS!! I'm not a believer in music/tuning out being a good thing while riding. But I can see some hunter/jumper/dressage riders that might think a spin around the paddock or pasture or farm as a "trail" ride. Maybe they can get away with it as they are in sight of the farm & people if they get in trouble but....for many of us - we go far, far away in the woods & fields and it's best to be aware of your surroundings for many reasons!

cheryl ann
Jun. 7, 2008, 10:39 AM
Oh God no...

Why?... I've got a couple thousand acres of simply beautiful woods and fields to ride around in, two permanant wooded camps, three creeks (where there is a stretch deep enough to swim a horse in), countless little streams, two beautiful little waterfalls (one of which we climb), a gorgeous ravine (a 150 ft. climb that Bobby first accomplished as a five month old foal, ponied off of Kit), open fields, five ponds, old truck trails and singletrack trails, a few wooden truck bridge crossings, an ethereal fern valley and some old gas line roads. Right outside the barn door, so I never have to trailer to them.

I have many times saddled up with a day's provisions and headed out at 3:30-4:00am, and stayed out till 10:00-11:00pm, and taken Bobby as a youngster on a pony rope with me. Also rode each one alone.

This is all privately owned land, by the BO and other landowners. In twenty years I've seen only one other set of hoof prints and those belonged to a friend of mine. In twenty years I've seen and heard only one dirtbike and two snowmobiles. In twenty years I've seen many deer (including a brand-new-wet baby and mama), coyote with pups, fox with pups, turkeys and everything else. Never another sight or sound of people other than the bike and sled. No hikers, no dogs. I ride these trails summer and winter.

Music would ruin a ride in an area like this.

If I wanted music, I'd head to the boarding barn a few miles away.

NO music, ever!!!!

Jun. 7, 2008, 11:30 AM
Unless I am riding with someone i will put my headphones in my ears. I dont get tense from anything and my mare relaxes if im not looking around everywhere i can still hear cars and such and dogs I completely ignore.

Jun. 7, 2008, 04:56 PM
I like to listen to music while I ride and I use the crummy ear bud headphones that came with my shuffle. I can hear decently with the volume on low, but I find that I end up taking the things out of my ears half the time, especially at speed because I like to keep a better ear on my horse's respiration.

Jun. 7, 2008, 04:57 PM
and they tend to make a whistling sound that's really annoying if I leave them in my ears at a gallop.

Jul. 12, 2008, 01:40 AM
I love listening to music while I ride down the trail or road. I only listen in one ear, but it helps me to stay relaxed as I often ride alone, and the first bit of the ride, when one of my horses is most likely to be silly, looking for a spook, or wanting to go back home, well, the music keeps me mellow, which in turn helps to keep the horse mellow. I guess it just helps to keep me from nit-picking at the horse! And, I just love music, it helps me do everything better!
I have never NOT noticed a car, motorcyle, another horse, a deer, a quad, nothing has surprised me due to having music playing in one ear. My older horse, who worries more when out alone, he is very soothed by me singing along to the music. :D

Jul. 12, 2008, 08:42 AM
Enclosed is a pic of my Mustang packing a beginner, friend of mine. He looks a little tense here. It is the first time someone else rode him.

Momma's boy, Phoenix.

Awwww, he's cute!! What a nice sturdy build on him too...:yes:

Jul. 12, 2008, 08:56 AM
I enjoy the peace and quiet of the woods, the singing of the birds, so music is the last thing I want to hear on the trails.

And as someone stated, I want to hear what is ahead of me. Also, for a safety factor -
Due to the fact human predators could be lurking anywhere, I also want to hear what is coming up behind me as I ride alone on my trail rides.

Jul. 12, 2008, 05:19 PM
When I ride Phoenix out on trails, he has his ear plugs in place. It has done wonders to calm him to noises. He gets tense, I get tense, he gets tense, I get tense.....etc...etc...etc. The cycle is non stop. With his ear plugs and my music on external speaker low volume....it really enhances our ride. I really enjoy music. There are times I just want the peace and solitude. It is like riding a bike to me. If I am trying to relax, no music, just horse...if we are jammin', I really like the music.

Oh, thank you for the comments of how solidly built he is...He is awesome. Surefooted, great endurance, and do what I ask. Solid horse. He is a mustang.

Jul. 13, 2008, 09:52 PM
What external speakers do you have Mustangtrailrider? I found a set at FYE that seem like i could be them into an arm band thing for a cell phone, but other than that haven't seen too many I think would work. I'll be hitting Walmart for other things this week, so I'm hoping to look there too!

Jul. 13, 2008, 10:00 PM
I use the external speaker built into my cell phone. It is loud enough for me to hear it, but not so loud as to block out any other sound. It is like elevator music. Just loud enough to be there. I didn't have any luck at Wally world. My cellphone has a 2.5mm adaptor and would not be able to use external speakers because they are 3.5mm. I have not found any in that size.

I am still searching. Good Luck in your search.

Jul. 14, 2008, 06:51 AM
look for a jack adapter, looks like an elbow. Try googling it (I would but I'm on a cell right now).