Sweet Pepper Ranch Cowgirl Retreats





Hi  All!  We are booking participants for our 2018 two special retreats for women riders, held here at Sweet Pepper Ranch and crafted with you in mind. Here’s what we are offering:

Sweet Pepper Ranch Cowgirl Retreats —

Featuring either cowboy dressage or ranch riding along with yoga and meditation. 

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Our Cowgirl Retreat is designed for committed women riders interested in improving riding/horsemanship skills and mind/body awareness (who isn’t these days?!!)


SPR Cowgirl Retreats will focus on ranch riding skills. Ranch riding is becoming increasingly popular and can be performed by any breed horse. It emphasizes quality of movement, overall manners, and responsiveness while performing required maneuvers at a forward, working speed with light contact. Ranch riding is a fun way to break up training routines and offer new learning experiences for us and our horses. Focus is on transitions, quality of gaits, and moving body parts with precision.











By adding yoga and meditation to our Cowgirl Retreat, we invite attention to our own physical and mental well-being as well as with working our horses. We will listen and connect with what our bodies are telling us, and turn that into action — perhaps learn to improve posture, increase range of motion, or even just feel how to relax for a few moments. Self-care for the body and the mind.  (No yoga or meditation experience necessary.)


  • Thursday afternoon, June 21 through Sunday mid-morning June 24
  • Late summer/early fall, date TBA. Thursday afternoon through Sunday mid-morning


FACILITATOR:  Alayne Blickle   Alayne, a life-long equestrian and reining/ranch-riding competitor, is the creator/director of Horses for Clean Water, an award-winning, internationally acclaimed horse and land management program which reduces environmental impacts on the land. Well-known for her enthusiastic, down-to-earth approaches, Alayne is an educator, writer, and photojournalist who has worked with horse and livestock owners since 1990. Alayne and her husband, Matt Livengood, are the creators and owners of Sweet Pepper Ranch, an eco-friendly horse motel and guest ranch.

JUNE RIDING CLINICIAN: Barbara Dunn of Nampa, ID. is a life-long horse person. She became a John and Josh Lyons Certified Trainer in 2007. She is a certified barefoot trimmer through Dynamic Balance Hoof Farrier and continues an extensive study of the horse’s hooves. She has trained countless young horses as well as wild mustangs and has participated in many Extreme Mustang Makeovers. Currently Barbara is pursuing clinician status in Cowboy Dressage where she recently received Soft Feel national recognition. Barbara is respected for her compassion for people and animals, her awareness of safety issues, and her studied approach to training horses and horsemanship.

SEPTEMBER RIDING CLINICIAN:  Matt Livengood  NRHA, ASHA & NVRHA judge/ trainer/ show manager.






Matt has been a National Reining Horse Association judge since 1999 and has recently added ranch riding certifications to the list. He teaches clinics on reining as well as ranch riding and ranch versatility throughout North America—and as far away as in Australia. Matt, a seasoned reining competitor, won the June 2017 Reno Extreme Mustang Makeover and is very involved in training and competing with Mustangs.


YOGA/MEDITATION INSTRUCTOR:  Audrey Waidelich, Oakland, CA.  Audrey has been practicing yoga for 15+ years. She has 400 hours of yoga teacher training and offers a soft and easy approach to teaching.  Her enthusiasm will show her deep love of yoga as she teaches and shares how her yoga practice contributes to her overall well-being. Audrey has a special interest in yoga as it pertains to healthy aging. Audrey, a skilled epicurean, will be our food goddess. Audrey is a life-long horse enthusiast has a special place in Alayne’s heart as she is one of Alayne’s high school horse buddies.


ALL AROUND GREAT PERSON: Janet Gilbreath, from Glen Ellyn, IL is another beloved high school horse friend of Alayne’s and joins us as our sous chef and all-around Girl Friday. Together Audrey and Janet will prepare scrumptious and healthy food to nourish our bodies and delight our palates. Janet is also a nurse practitioner and can advise us if there are medical concerns.








Afternoons feature a speaker on a horse related topic. Potential topics are equine bodywork, doing groundwork with horses, equine photography and animal communications.


LOCATION: Sweet Pepper Ranch, Nampa, ID  

















Sweet Pepper Ranch is a small-scale, personalized guest ranch in the high desert of southwestern Idaho. At SPR we raise and train reining and ranch riding horses and grow grass hay. We work long days exercising and training our horses, running the day-to-day aspects of an environmentally-sensitive horse keeping operation, as well as teaching lessons. Facilities include a 150 x 300’ outdoor arena, two round pens, a 120 x 72’ indoor arena, an outdoor washrack as well as turnouts and many stalls with runs. Guests can enjoy our solar heated pool, outdoor pergola, wireless internet, or evening bon fires. Nearby activities abound from visiting rodeos and wineries to trail riding at sunset near waterfalls or hiking painted desert canyons.



  • Morning yoga, daily meditation sessions — each session designed to improve the rider’s strength and  awareness; take-home techniques will be shared
  • 2+ hours each day of ranch riding instruction, plus an afternoon lecture/activity related to horses
  • 8 meals prepared for you with (as much as possible) locally sourced, sustainable, and organic produce
  • Meals will be low-gluten, low-dairy, and no red meat
  • Daily free time in the pool or on deck relaxing
  • Daily happy hour
  • Evening movie (equine related)


(Does not include horse/human housing — but that is available!)








7 am  yoga

8 am  breakfast

9 am – 11 am  on horses – Ranch Riding

Noon  lunch

1 pm  guest speaker (equine related)

3 pm  pool and free time

5 pm  meditation

5:30  happy hour

6:30  dinner

8 pm  movie (equine related)









  • Sweet peppers with yogurt, Kalamata, honey
  • Blueberry chicken, charred corn and avocado salad, roasted carrots with feta
  • Lemon panna cotta


  • Egg frittata w zucchini and onions


BRING:  yourself, your horse and his tack, yoga mat and yoga clothes, swimsuit…  plus a healthy attitude and interest in learning. Feel free to bring a bottle of your favorite beverage to share, alcoholic or otherwise.



Reduced tuition waivers available in exchange for KP duties &/or ranch work:  $375



  • Haul in each day and tie to your trailer — or…
  • RV/LQ cost:  $30/day
  • One SPR guest room available for two:  $60/person/day (based on double occupancy)

  • Limited number of SPR guest horses available, please inquire
  • Stalls and hay available:  $20/horse/day
  • Day stalls only:  $10/day


Non-refundable deposit:  $200, balance due 30 days prior


MAX PARTICIPANTS:  8 participants


REGISTRATION:  Alayne Blickle, alayne@horsesforcleanwater.com or 206-909-0225


REQUIREMENTS:  Experienced, committed women riders interested in improving riding skills, horse/human relationships, and mind/body awareness.

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