Karen McLean (pictured with her father, Bud) had an idyllic childhood growing up with horses surrounded by pristine wilderness in British Columbia, Canada. She now runs the family-owned lodge that sits beside the translucent Chilko River and greets horse riders throughout the summer season and watches as they fall in love with her home. Here we ask Karen what she LOVES about guiding and welcoming globetrotters into her home.
How long have you been running your horse riding holidays?
Twenty five years, but ten years prior to that working for my parents. Basically I landed on the planet being horse crazy and have always had a fascination for everything horse. I love the way they look, feel, smell, speak and move. The smell of a horse is my favorite scent.
And what was the background, history or reason for starting?
I love beautiful wild places and love horses. This lifestyle offered me what I love while combining my two biggest passions.
How many guest horses do you have?
We have 38 head.
Describe your herd of horses in four words.
Best trusted traveling companions
What do you love most about your job?
The beauty and wilds of the land and being able to see it, breath it, feel it, every day.
What is the most challenging part?
Living in a remote area is sometimes inconvenient, 3 ½ hours to the mail box. If something breaks, we have to fix it. You learn a lot which is great.
Why should globetrotters sign up for this ride?
It’s stunning and fun!
Finish this sentence – don’t leave home without…your spirit for adventure!
What has been the most memorable or significant moment of your guiding career?
The first time I went on a wilderness pack trip in the mountains. I was 15 years old and fell in love with travelling cross country on horseback. The simplicity of camping out with your horse, sitting around the campfire, watching the stars at night and seeing new country every day. It was an experience that would become my life.