JARED FIELDS • PICAYUNE STAFF
BURNET — You could say Cat Berg guided her horse through the 25,500 square-foot covered arena, but Nell — the horse — needed little direction.
“It’s the first time I’ve driven her,” said Berg, operations manager of FourWinds Ranch & Arena. “She’s absolutely a dream.”
Nell is new to FourWinds, located about 10 miles north of Burnet on U.S. 281, but a natural at pulling the carriage Berg is driving.
Others can get a chance to do the same Feb. 15-16 at the Good Hands Driving Academy hosted by the ranch. Instructor Tom O’Carroll is offering hands-on lessons, while the public is welcome to watch for free.
“The biggest thing of all I think they’ll find is that safety is No. 1 when it comes to driving horses,” O’Carroll said. “What I stress the most is never leave a stone unturned when it comes to getting properly hooked up.”
Berg and her husband, Michael, are building the ranch into a driving paradise. The covered arena blocks the sun in the summer. Different trails offer varying degrees of difficulty for drivers. An obstacle course also is on the grounds.
O’Carroll called the facilities “wonderful” and said he hopes FourWinds can attract enough people to keep it a driving facility.
“They’ve done a great job in taking that piece of land and fixing it up for equestrian driving,” O’Carroll said.
O’Carroll, originally from Ireland, has been working with horses his whole life and said he is still learning. That’s what he hopes to pass on in his work.
“I look forward to meeting the people,” O’Carroll said. “I love my job; I love seeing people get out and enjoy horses and be safe doing it.”
The clinic is 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Feb. 15-16. Go to www.fourwindstx.com or call (512) 954-8674 for more information.