Anthony Chabot Equestrian Center
A horse barn doesn't have to be the biggest, finest, or most modern to be much loved — as long as its inhabitants regularly get their meals, water, and stalls mucked, and their owners have tack and grain rooms, hitching posts for grooming, and places to ride. Anthony Chabot Equestrian Center is a working-class ranch that sports four-plus barns housing about ninety hoofed critters. Riders can walk, flat walk, trot, gait, canter, lope, or gallop their fleet-footed mounts in two outdoor arenas, an indoor arena, or the 5,000-plus acres of fabulous trails crisscrossing Anthony Chabot Regional Park. What makes this public barn so special is its big heart, embodied by quintessential horsewoman and barn operator Sara Crary. Another endearing feature is the constant everyday flow of visitors, including hikers, mountain bikers, and parents pushing strollers, whose presence is welcomed and even encouraged by outreach efforts such as regular barn tours. It's a little patch of paradise on earth.