Ortega Mountain Ranch

Frequently Asked Questions



1. Do you have pasture boarding?

Our boarding area consists of very large (average size is 60’ x 90’) dirt paddocks with shade/rain covers. Each horse has a private paddock or is paired with a compatible horse, depending on what horses we have at the ranch.

We also have a natural turn-out pasture in which the horses are rotated during the day in compatible groups. In addition to the natural pasture, we have a 5-acre seasonal grass pasture in which the horses can be turned out by the owner.


2. Can my horse be left in the 5-acre pasture on a full-time basis?

We are very conscientious about monitoring the horses. We cannot monitor them in the pasture, so it is for daytime turn-out only.


3. What services do you offer?

We are a full-service holistic facility. We take care of the horses from head to toe. We handle all the day-to-day needs of each horse, including any health issues, hoof trimming, and dietary concerns. The owner does not have to do anything but write the monthly check.


4. What farrier services are available at Ortega Mountain Ranch?

We are advocates of barefoot, so we do not shoe horses. All of our horses are barefoot, and, as a result, their feet are very healthy. We have rehabbed many horses that were brought to us lame, and some of these horses became sound enough to be ridden again.


5. Can I board my horse with you if I am still riding him?

We are not an active riding facility, so we only accept retired horses or lay-ups. We are not a ‘boarding stable’ in the conventional sense. Instead, we have opened up our ranch to exclusive, full-service retirement or lay-up boarding.


6. Where are you located?

We are in the Ortega Mountains between San Juan Capistrano and Lake Elsinore, 4 miles up a dirt road, and behind a locked gate in the midst of 40,000 acres of wilderness. We are very secluded and private, even though we are a 35-40 minute drive from the surrounding towns.


7. Once my horse is at the ranch, can I visit him?

Of course! Everyone who has a horse at our ranch is part of our ranch family and is welcome to visit any time. We have lovely locations for picnics. You can even take your horse to the big pasture and enjoy a picnic lunch there with your horse.


8. Do you use conventional veterinary medicine?

As a holistic facility, we use all healing modalities, including conventional Western medicine when needed. We are very grateful for our wonderful vets! Our primary healing modalities, however, are homeopathy, herbs, vitamins/minerals, proper barefoot trimming, and nutrition. We approach all chronic conditions from a natural, non-drug-based perspective.


9. What sets Ortega Mountain Ranch apart from other boarding stables?

We are a 28-acre private ranch with limited boarding. Our pace is slow, and our ranch is quiet and peaceful. Since it is our private ranch and not a ‘boarding stable’, we keep the boarding part of it small and selective so that we can give the best care possible to the horses.

We are a small facility, so we are able to give each horse lots of attention every day. We pride ourselves on taking good care of our charges. They are all very special and deserve the best of care. We truly do care for all the horses as though they were our own.

We offer natural-style boarding—outdoors with shade/rain covers. The horses are fed hay (not pellets or cubes) twice daily, each paddock has a large trough of fresh, pure well water, and the pens are cleaned twice daily. The horses have fresh grass hay in front of them for most of the day and night.

We are unique in that we give 100% care to the horses. Of course, we contact the owner if there are any problems, recommendations, or changes. Each month, a personal note and photos of each horse are emailed to each owner, and every month we write a short newsletter about the month’s activities at the ranch. Even if the owners are not able to visit their horses often, we keep in contact with them so they know that their horses are being well cared for.


If you have any questions, please reach out to us at ortegamtnranch@cox.net