How Many Miles Can You Ride on a Horse in a Day?

It is possible to humanely ride a a horse up to 100 miles in a single day, but this would be a single event by a highly trained and conditioned horse, followed by extended rest. The average distance that a horse can travel for long distances varies depending on the quality, fitness and training of the horse as well as the breed.

  1. One-day Records

    • The Guinness Book of World Records contains no data for a longest horse ride completed in a single day. Such a record could not be set without risking the life of the horse. One hundred mile races, however, are organized by the American Endurance Ride Conference. These races have to be completed within 24 hours, and the horses are periodically given medical checks to make sure their pulses are returning to normal while at rest. The majority of horses in these competitions are Arabians.

    Trips Lasting Several Days

    • Competitive trail rides lasting up to 3 days might see horses covering 20 to 40 miles per day, at an average speed of 4 to 7 mph. The ranges depend on the fitness of the horse. For comparison, an unfit or overweight horse should be not ridden more than 3 to 5 miles at a time. Riders wishing to improve their horse's condition need to gradually increase the mileage, pace and frequency of their rides.

    Trips Lasting Weeks or Months

    • For trips lasting longer than a week, a fit horse might be able to travel between 10 and 40 miles per day depending on condition. Extremely long distance trips by horse are quite uncommon in modern times. The average mileage for the 2000-mile Oregon trail, for example, would have been 10 to 15 miles per day, allowing completion in four to six months. These are distances covered with oxen and wagons as well as horses, but detailed descriptions of shorter horse trips submitted to Equine Ramblers Website confirm 10 to 15 miles per day as an average for a relaxed trip. Contemporary riders do not usually have a reason to try to exceed this for long distances.

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References

  • Photo Credit horse rider image by Oleg Gribanov from Fotolia.com

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