This summer, along with hosting summer camps and events, 4-C Stables, owned and operated by Stacey Carpenter and Ryan Metcalf, opens its Extreme Trail Horse Association obstacle course to those who want to ride.

The ETHA obstacle course features bridges, culverts, a maze, pool noodle obstacles, a water crossing, step-ups, tires, objects that you rope and more. Carpenter said the trail offers about 36 obstacles across 3 acres.

Carpenter expected the stables’ June 20 ETHA event to be attended primarily by women. She said she loves to host ladies’ retreats where they are educated on the trail obstacles, groundwork and getting respect from their horse.

For those who would like to participate, a full day of riding through the ETHA trails costs $45 on their own horse. People without a horse can inquire about using one of the stables’ horses. Participants can schedule a ride online at under the ETHA tab.

Carpenter, who grew up with horses and horse shows, found out about ETHA obstacle courses through an event she attended, where she recognized that the certified obstacle course she competed on was similar to hers.

After meeting ETHA requirements and paying a membership, the 4-C Stables obstacle course itself became certified. 4-C Stables is now a part of ETHA, which lists the obstacle course on the association website,

Along with events involving their ETHA course, Carpenter also hosts horse fairs that include providers such as equine dentists, vets, farriers, chiropractors, massage therapist, freeze branding, saddle fitting, horse insurance and horse photography.

“You can bring your horse there and get everything done,” Carpenter said.

It’s because of her extensive experience as a veterinary technician and equine massage therapist that she’s passionate about educating horse owners on their horse’s needs.

“The obstacle course is more for fun but I am big on the health fair to educate people on what needs to be done to keep their horse healthy,” she said. “A lot of people don’t know that they need routine dental work and hoof care and they can also have a lot of problems if their saddle doesn’t fit.”

Carpenter said 4-C Stables has been “quite busy” hosting summer camps for children (with sessions scheduled through mid-July) from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday-Thursday while also offering riding lessons. Lesson rates are $50 an hour private and $35 an hour group.

For more information about 4-C Stables, located at 1355 Ovilla Road, visit the website at, search on Facebook @4cStables, call 972-814-3988 or email

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