We’re smack dab in the middle of wine and horse country. Certainly, we can saddle-up and sip at a winery or two here in SLO County. Riding from Cass Winery to Sculpterra Winery is exactly what my mom and I experienced with Crystal of Central Coast Trailrides. You can too, either with your own horses or with Central Coast Trailrides.
Riding Your Horse from Cass Winery to Sculpterra Winery
Start you saddle-up and sip ride at Cass Winery and Vineyard located in Paso Robles off Linne Road. You’ll park your rig in the far parking lot space to the right of the Winery. Cass asks that you sign a waiver before enjoying your ride through the vineyards. One trail takes you along the perimeter of the vineyard and you can also make your way down the middle or through other paths. You can spend 30 minutes to an hour at Cass unless you opt to go straight down to the dry river bed which can take you to Sculpterra Winery.
Access the Dry River Bed
Access to the dry river bed is across the street from the Cass entrance, a bit to the left as you face the riverbed. Be careful crossing the road here as cars may be traveling fast along Linne Road and not expecting to have horses crossing. Once in the riverbed you will head west – going to the right – making your way towards Sculpterra Winery. The approximately 3.5 mile trek could take about an hour one way going at the walk.
The dry river bed is enjoyed by other riders. You might also encounter loose dogs and residents working in their yards. Motorcycles are illegal, but have been encountered. The river bed is owned by the neighboring residents, so please be courteous. Please leave your dogs at home.
You will probably run across deer and perhaps even a rattlesnake in the spring months. Summer heat can be amplified in the sand and the dry river bed is mostly fairly deep sand, so it is a workout for your horse. You can look for side trails which get you out of the deep sand and may also provide short cuts.
Getting Close to Sculpterra Winery
You’ll know you are getting close to the trail to Sculpterra Winery when you head under the Linne Road bridge. Once under the bridge head to the left and look for a trail that takes you from the river bed up towards Sculpterra. Look for a group of bins and travel parallel to them and parallel to Linne Road. Go through the area of the fence that is down where you’ll see the Sculpterra direction sign off Linne Road. Cross the road here and head up the dirt road driveway towards the Sculpterra gate.
Entering Sculpterra Winery
Notice the beautiful iron-work on the entrance gate, this is setting the stage for more beautiful sculptures to come. Once inside the gate take an immediate right in front of the vines to head up the far right-hand lane. Turn left up the lane and ride the perimeter of the front vineyard. Soon you will see the main parking lot where you’ll find the horse tie-rails off to the right of the parking lot.
The tie-rails are another work of art. Take note of the horse heads and the iron-work details as you tie-up your horse. There is a rubber tub with water for the horses and please pick up any manure your horses deposit using the manure fork provided. The front vineyard is the only section you are allowed to ride in.
Enjoy Wine Tasting at Sculpterra
After settling the horses at the tie rail, make your way to the Sculpterra Winery. On a busy weekend the tasting will take place out in the back patio and in the tasting room. Don’t miss the delightful sculptures in the front garden area, in the winery tasting room and in the back patio. Try to see how many horse-themed sculptures you can find.
If you need a bite to eat with your wine tasting or a glass of wine, you can make purchases of cheese, prosciutto, olives and other delights from a refrigerated case in the main tasting room. Bottled water is also available. Crystal treated us to these delicious snacks which was very welcome with the hour plus ride out to Sculpterra Winery along the riverbed and still needing to get back to Cass Winery.
Heading Back to Cass Winery
We basically retraced our steps as we headed back to Cass Winery. Again, most of the ride takes place in the dry river bed and we finished going up the main road of the Cass Vineyards.
Once back at Cass Winery we dismounted and handed our horses to Crystal. If you have your own horses you can leave them tied to your trailer. Or if you ride into Cass there is a tie-rail right inside the first entrance. Your horses can be watered at the watering tub. A manure rake and bucket are provided so you can clean up your horse’s manure before leaving.
Enjoy Lunch and Wine Tasting at Cass Winery
Cass has a full lunch menu, wine tasting and even small tubs of Gelato. Seating on the front patio or inside the winery provides a welcome place to sit and talk about your ride. Since it was warm out, we opted to cool our palates with the Gelato. I personally recommend a glass of the Viognier to enjoy with your lunch.
Highlights of the Ride from Cass Winery to Sculpterra Winery
The Cass Vineyard vines were brilliant green with tiny grapes just starting to form. Golden hills surrounded us as we enjoyed passing through the Cass Winery Vineyards. A welcome cool breeze brushed our hair back as we passed the Cass Vineyard reservoir.
Lovely driftwood formations can be found in the dry river bed along with a variety of landscapes from oak trees to coastal grass and mustard flowers. Hawks fly overhead, deer skitter through the brush while neighbors and other horse riders greet you as you pass by.
The road up to Sculpterra is lined with Purple-Leaf Flower Plum Trees which provides a dramatic contrast to the dirt road. The sculptures in the front garden and back patio add such a delightful treasure hunt to your experience. We visited Sculpterra when they were having a Greek festival complete with a food booth, music and traditional Greek dancing. Check out their events page to catch special events.
Crystal of Central Coast Trailrides was perfect company and took care of us and the horses with grace and professionalism. She is well-known at both wineries and we were quite welcomed in our horse gear. Several winery guests were surprised to hear we arrived on horseback and were intrigued with the idea.
Cheers to another wonderful horse riding memory made.
Notes for a perfect day:
- Bring money for wine tasting and/or food at both wineries. If you go with Central Coast Trailrides the tasting at both wineries or Gelato at Cass is part of your ride.
- Plan to be out for at least four hours with riding and sipping time, allow more time if you plan to have lunch at Cass.
- Sunglasses will be appreciated as you ride over the sandy riverbed.
- It can get pretty warm riding in the riverbed in the summer time so plan accordingly.
- Please leave your dogs at home.
- Check out the minimum age requirement at both facilities.
- Clean up your horse manure on both properties.
- Drink responsibly.
Driving Directions to Cass Winery and Vineyard
Cass Winery and Vineyard address is: 7350 Linne Road Paso Robles, CA 93446. Here are the driving directions from Paso Robles:
- From Rt 101, take 46 East 7.2 miles to Geneseo Road.
- Turn right, go 4.2 miles to the stop sign at Linne Road.
- Turn right 100 yards and you are there.
Driving Directions to Sculpterra Winery and Vineyard
Sculpterra Winery address is: 5015 Linne Road Paso Robles, CA 93446
- Take the Spring Street exit off the 101.
- Turn right at first stop light onto Niblick Road.
- Cross the bridge and follow Niblick Road out 3 miles.
- Continue past Creston Road. You’ll travel through to 2 X 100 yard right/left jogs in road which turns into Linne Road.
- Follow Linne approximately 3 miles to Sculpterra Winery at 5015 Linne Road.
Photos: Sharon Jantzen
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