Thomas J. Story
The Wild Horse Sanctuary is in Shingletown, about 170 miles north of Sacramento and 30 miles southeast of Redding.
Spend the afternoon at Turtle Bay Exploration Park($13; 840 Sundial Bridge Dr./Auditorium Dr., Redding; turtlebay.org or 530/243-8850). From there, walk across the 217-foot-high Sundial Bridge that crosses the Sacramento River and links up with the McConnell Arboretum & Botanical Gardens at Turtle Bay (same fee and contact info as park; see above), perfect for a stroll. Watch the sunset over a dinner of house-smoked prime rib and gorgonzola polenta on the riverside patio at Rivers Restaurant ($$$; closed Sun; 202 Hemsted Dr., Redding; 530/223-5606). Spend the night at the Weston House Bed & Breakfast (from $155; in Shingletown; westonhouse.com).
Breakfast by Weston House's pool, which overlooks the Wild Horse Sanctuary (two-day rides $435, three-day rides $535; includes meals and lodging; wildhorsesanctuary.org), then head over there to saddle up.
After your ride, check out the handful of up-and-coming area wineries. Try the 2007 Petite Sirah at Mt. Tehama Winery (no tasting fee; by appointment only; 530/474-3304) and Donna's Dessert Wine at Indian Peak Vineyards (no tasting fee; 31559 Forward Rd., Manton; 530/474-5506). Also cruise by Alger Vineyards & Winery ($5 tasting fee; 31636 Forward Rd., Manton; 530/474-9463) and Anselmo Vineyards at Seven Hills Land & Cattle Co. ($20 tasting fee; 28740 Inwood Rd., Inwood; 530/474-5546). Then pick up snacks for the road at Manton Corners (31280 Manton Rd., Manton; 530/474-5188).