Lily Glen was once an important stagecoach stop between Ashland and Klamath Falls. Today this grassy meadow on the shore of Howard Prairie Reservoir is a Jackson County Park and a favorite riding area for many southern Oregonians. And while the stagecoach-era barn burned down in 2003, the historic water tower remains.
Lily Glen was also the site of a 3-day eventing competition that drew riders from all over the northwest. Today the horse camp is home base for an annual endurance race.
Lily Glen Equestrian Park is located off Dead Indian Memorial Road on the shore of Howard Prairie Reservoir, about 20 miles east of Ashland. The horse camp has very nice facilities, including corrals, potable water from a pump, a toilet, manure dump, and garbage cans. In addition to individual horse campsites, the park has two large group sites that are reservable up to nine months in advance.
The riding at Lily Glen is a little different than what you’ll experience at most horse camps. While there are no official trails in the area, several unofficial trails take you around Howard Prairie Reservoir, or on a 10-mile loop along the eastern shore of the lake and back through the forest, or on the 30-mile Lily Glen endurance loop, which runs partially on the Pacific Crest Trail.
Most of the property on both sides of Dead Indian Memorial Road is BLM land, and numerous forest roads criss-cross it. So in addition to following the unofficial trails, you can explore the dirt roads or ride cross-country over the area’s gently rolling hills, though open forest, and across expansive meadows. The riding is easy, and the terrain is beautiful.
In case you were wondering, Dead Indian Memorial Road goes past Dead Indian Creek and Dead Indian Mountain, which got their names after some settlers discovered two dead Rogue River Indians in wigwams near the creek in 1854. The Rogue River Indians were thought to have died in a fight with Klamath Indians. There you have it.
Getting to Lily Glen: Heading south on I-5, take the second Ashland exit, Exit 14. Drive east on Hwy. 66 for 1 mile, then turn left on Dead Indian Memorial Road and continue 18 miles. One mile past the turnoff for Howard Prairie Reservoir, turn right into Lily Glen Equestrian Park.
Season: Mid-May through October
Facilities: 6 sites with 2-horse steel corrals, 5 sites without corrals but with trees for highlining and plenty of room for portable corrals. All sites are back-in with room for one vehicle, and all have a fire pit or barbeque, picnic table, and hitching rail. Two large group sites that share 32 log corrals are available by reservation. The horse camp has potable water from hand pumps, plus vault toilets, manure pits, and garbage cans.
Fees: Fees for camping or for day use. Reservations required for group sites (call 541-774-8183).
More Information: Lily Glen Equestrian Camp is covered in more detail in Riding Southern Oregon Horse Trails, by Kim McCarrel, Ponderosa Press, 2014).