Trail post sign
Some background...
What will happen if we don't do anything?
Why do we need to work together?
What can we do?
Who is working on these issues already?
Granite Hills Equestrian Community

This site is here to support and encourage the well-established and growing equestrian community in Granite Hills, (near El Cajon, California) and surrounding areas (Crest, Dehesa, Blossom Valley, Rancho San Diego, Harbison Canyon, Lakeside, etc.).

If you are a horse, donkey, or mule owner, or hope to be someday, then you are a member of this community, with shared interests and concerns. We all want safe and fun places to ride, boarding and training facilities, businesses that serve us, and community development that includes our priorities. We want the value of our properties to increase. We want to preserve and enhance the quality and character of our neighborhood. We do not want our lifestyle to be "phased out" as new residents arrive without the understanding of what it means to live in a semi-rural community.

This is not a club or other organization. There are no dues, no membership forms, no shows, no meetings, no annual dinners... This is simply a way to stay in touch and share information.

Horse people must be seen and heard as a part of the community.

It's easy for people new to the area to be unaware of all the horses, mules, donkeys, and even llamas living in backyards and along side streets here. Many have no idea how popular riding, driving, and packing are, and howmany members of ourcommunity participate. One of the simplest ways to raise awareness is to get out and about with your animals, and talk to the people you meet along the way. Go for a ride, or just take them out for a walk in the neighborhood. A few months ago I
Stay in touch via the Granite Hills Equestrian mailing list

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It's easy and free to sign onto this mailing list. When you have information to share - a great trail you've discovered, or an important community meeting, or if you just want to meet other equestrians in the neighborhood - simply post a message to the list, and everyone on the list will receive it. You will receive messages the other list members send, too.

even saw a large wagon being driven along Greenfield Drive! We're here, we just need to be more visible, and be good ambassadors.

In addition to being seen, we must be sure our representatives hear from us, and understand our priorities and concerns. Click here for more information on how to get involved in local County politics, and make your voice heard.

Work for safe, clear road shoulders - for walkers and runners, too.

Are you forced to walk or ride on the pavement because the road shoulders are impassable? Blocked by overgrown landscaping, walls, or sometimes even dangerous t-posts put there deliberately to keep people from driving or parking on the side of the road? Some residents think their property goes right to the pavement, but most often the road right-of-way is much wider, including the unpaved shoulders of the road. This is a public right-of-way, just like the paved part of the road, and just as one would never build a fence across the road, residents must not build structures or plant landscaping in the roadway. Keeping the road shoulders clear not only benefits horsepeople, but walkers and runners, and kids walking to and from school. It also benefits drivers, who will find that driving is safer when non-motorized traffic has a way to stay off the road.

To report encroachments where residents have blocked the road shoulders with landscaping, structures, Multi-user trail signfences, or other hazards, either deliberately or through simple oversight, contact Bob Christopher, Public Works Manager, County of San Diego (Phone 858-495-5484, Fax 858-495-8928). Provide any information you can, including the property address, a description of the problem, and even a photo, if possible. Anything you can do to give clear, complete information will make it easier for the County to take care of the situation.

Work for a community riding ring, and public trails.

Not too many years ago there was a public riding ring in Granite Hills - installed and maintained by the now-defunct Granite Hills Horsemens Association. If you are interested in having a public ring again, please get in touch with me. It won't be easy, but I think it can be done. The County is being supportive, but there is no money available to purchase the land or maintain a park. Money for parks comes from development, and we don't have any development going one here. Let's look at other alternatives - grants, bequests, land swaps... The land is still there, the interest is there - let's make it happen.

Educating Drivers About Horses

As new residents move into the neighborhood, education is a good first step to gaining their cooperation and responsible behavior. Toward that end I contacted the County, and they very kindy installed 4 yellow horse-and-rider signs along the roads entering Granite Hills. My hope is that drivers will be made aware that riding is a legitimate activity, and will be more careful around riding animals.
Do drivers sometimes speed past you on the road, or even honk? When I've talked to non-horsey friends about this they are usually surprised to hear that it is legal to ride on/alongside public roads.

Here' s the lowdown from the DMV's web site (emphasis added):

Horse-drawn vehicles and riders of horses or other animals are entitled to share the road with you. It is a traffic offense to scare horses or stampede livestock. Slow down or stop, if necessary, and when requested to do so by the riders or herders."

If you see animals or livestock, slow down. Obey the person in charge of the animals. If you see a stray animal in your path, slow down or stop, if it is safe to do so.

Click for El Cajon, California Forecast

If you have anything you would like to see on this site, please contact me.

Please invite your friends and neighbors to participate. The address is easy to remember -, then click on the "Granite Hills Equestrian Community" button at the bottom of the page..

Happy Trails,

Linda Eskin

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copyright 2000, 2001, 2002, Linda Eskin