Discover New Trails With the American Competitive Trail Horse Association

You owe it to yourself and your horse to take a break from the arena and get out and enjoy a relaxing trail ride, and ACTHA is the perfect way to do just that! The American Competitive Trail Horse Association (ACTHA) has held more than 1,000 rides nationwide,  so there’s sure to be a ride in your area.

An ACTHA Competitive Trail Challenge or CTC consists of 6-8 judged obstacles and is approximately 6-8 miles long. Obstacles are mostly natural and each has its own judge. Obstacles can include crossing water, crossing bridges, opening gates and maneuvering embankments. On the trail, you can choose to try the obstacles or simply enjoy the ride. Any breed of horse or any style of riding is welcome.

On the ACTHA Events page you will also find ACTHA Obstacle Challenges or AOCs. An AOC consists of 8 obstacles and 2 judges. Held in an arena (indoor, outdoor or covered) or in a field, the AOC enables ACTHA riders to enjoy the obstacles and further their horsemanship skills in an enclosed setting. The ACTHA Obstacle Challenges were introduced in 2012 as a way for ACTHA riders to enjoy the obstacles, without the distance of the trail, during the extreme weather months.

Becoming an ACTHA Ride Host is a rewarding way to earn funds to a cause dear to your heart, or for a club, association or for your own benefit. You will need access to six miles of trail on public or private land to host an ACTHA CTC, or access to an arena or field to host an ACTHA AOC. You will also need enough space to park approximately 20-25 trailers and some willing volunteers to help you coordinate and judge your event. ACTHA will assist you every step of the way, providing insurance for your event and a personal ACTHA Trailboss to guide you through the process. ACTHA will also provide training for you and your judges, as well as access to our comprehensive website that handles all administrative tasks. At every ACTHA CTC or AOC, ACTHA makes a donation to a local equine rescue or charity designated by the ACTHA Ride Host.

ACTHA is committed to improving the health and welfare of horses nationwide. ACTHA Co-Founder, Karen VanGetson states “ACTHA has a huge heart for the horse and a huge heart for charity. We want to welcome every trail rider across the nation and show them the fun and enjoyment of ACTHA. Together we can ride for a purpose, with a common goal of helping those non-profit organizations who are in need of funding.”

For more information about ACTHA or about hosting an ACTHA Competitive Trail Challenge or Obstacle Challenge, visit our website at To be notified when there is an ACTHA ride near you sign up to receive the ACTHA Newsletter.