Birgit Stutz
Katy Elliot on Copper in her outdoor riding ring.  Luise Adler photo
Katy Elliot on Copper in her outdoor riding ring. Luise Adler photo

Is exploring the scenic Robson Valley on horseback with a knowledgeable guide, either on your own horse or a rented one, on your bucket list? Would you like to brush up on your horsemanship skills?

Or are you looking for a first-time horse experience for yourself or your kids?

Cowgirl Up Adventures offers all this and more. Cowgirl Up Adventures is the creation of Katy Elliot and offers guided horseback riding tours, riding lessons, and custom guiding services in the historic Tete Jaune Cache area.

Elliot, who lived in Valemount for ten years and now calls Tete Jaune home, grew up outside of Parry Sound, Ontario. She has been riding horses for 20 years and owned her own horses for 17 years.

“I started my riding career riding and showing Arabian horses as a junior and have been training my own horses for ten years,” she said.

Elliot is a certified riding instructor with the Certified Horsemanship Association and has been guiding horseback trips in Valemount for the past ten years and teaching lessons for four years.

“I have spent ten years guiding with Tony Parisi of Borderline Outfitting and training horses for Tony,” she said.

Some of Elliot’s students on a trail ride.  Katy Elliot photo
Some of Elliot’s students on a trail ride. Katy Elliot photo
“He has been a huge supporter and mentor of mine and gave me my start in guiding. It was through Tony that I discovered my interest in a future in guiding, teaching and training horses. It was because of Tony and his encouragement of me that I started the business and pursued certification and a teaching career.”

Elliot received her certification with the Certified Horsemanship Association in 2015 and is a Level 1 English and Western instructor.

“I am still actively learning and plan to try another level this year or next,” she said, adding she also takes dressage and horsemanship lessons at Falling Star Ranch Academy of Foundational Horsemanship in Dunster as well as jumping lessons at Fox Brook Farm and reining lessons at a private facility, both in Ontario, once a year.

Elliot, who owns 12 horses, is very adventurous and passionate about mountains and horses.

“I love to share my passion for horses and adventures,” she said.

When not in the saddle, Elliot enjoys hiking, backpacking, and fishing. In the winter she pursues her passions of snowmobiling and skiing. Elliot also loves spending time with her four-year-old daughter Sarah.

“I love being a mom and she loves horses. It is great to share my passion with her and spend time with her.”

Elliot lives on a 40-acre off-grid property, which boosts a brand-new outdoor riding ring with beautiful views of the Rockies and Cariboo mountains as well as access to lots of trails of varying terrain and length.

Katy Elliot and Blue crossing the Moose River.  Delphine Bequ photo
Katy Elliot and Blue crossing the Moose River. Delphine Bequ photo
Cowgirl Up Adventures is fully insured and offers guided trail rides from one hour to full day rides. Each guest is mounted on an experienced mountain horse, and western riding instruction is provided before venturing out on the trails.

Elliot said the one-hour and two-hour rides are suitable for all level of riders, with the two-hour ride leading through old-growth forest surrounding Spittal Creek.

“The lovely mountain views are a plus!”

For those looking for more time in the saddle, Elliot suggests one of her full-day rides.

“Bring a lunch and spend a day exploring the beautiful Robson Valley on horseback.”

Elliot also offers custom guided tours, either with her horses or yours, in various locations.

“There are many beautiful places to explore in the Robson Valley,” she said.

For the younger riders, Elliot also offers leadline rides, which are one and a half hours long and provide an introduction to horses and riding.

“Students learn how to safely groom and tack a horse for riding as well as basic information on horse handling and care,” she said.

The leadline ride with riding instruction is suitable for ages four and up.

If you are looking to improve your horsemanship skills or aren’t quite ready to head out on the trails yet, Elliot also offers riding lessons.

“I specialize in beginner and children’s riding lessons, both English and Western riding,” she said.

“I use natural horsemanship methods and focus on a bond between horse and rider, developing trust, and a strong seat. All lessons start from the ground up. Lessons are one and a half hours in length and include catching, leading, grooming, tacking, riding, cooling out, and horse care. These lessons are great for anybody wanting more confidence in the saddle or looking for a first-time horse experience.”

Elliot also offers one-day and multi-day horsemanship camps for small groups. Contact her for more information.

Cowgirl Up Adventures is located at 13750 Highway 16, Tete Jaune Cache, just 15 minutes from Mount Robson, 25 mins from Valemount, 35 minutes from McBride, and one hour from Jasper.

For more information visit https://www.cowgirlupadventures.com/ or contact Elliot at 250-566-5099 or by email at info@cowgirlupadventures.com.

Good luck with your new venture Katy!


Roper enjoying some sun.  Katy Elliot photo
Roper enjoying some sun. Katy Elliot photo

Elliot’s daughter Sarah on Cheyenne at a Valemount Saddle   and Wagon Club gymkhana.  Brian McKirdy photo
Elliot’s daughter Sarah on Cheyenne at a Valemount Saddle and Wagon Club gymkhana. Brian McKirdy photo