Saddletree Stables comes from humble beginnings when owner, Donnie Stephenson, first bought the farm in 1987. There was a farmhouse, one small block barn, and a very informal grass riding area. Saddletree was originally a boarding barn for gaited show horses and never planned to become the riding school it is today. We first began teaching when Donnie offered some lessons to a friend's daughter. From there, a game of telephone ensued and he gradually took in more and more students. Since then we've grown into a large, prominent lesson facility with a multitude of instructors and lesson horses; now specializing in hunters, jumpers, and western pleasure.
Meet the Owner
Donnie first began interactions with horses while he was in high school. At that time, Donnie worked with gaited breeds such as American Saddlebreds and Tennessee Walking Horses.
He grew to love them and began showing up and down the east coast. He went on to win and show at multiple North Carolina state championships. To this day, his favorite breed is still Saddlebreds; he says his favorite thing about them is their high-strung, big energy, and willingness to do anything for their rider.
Saddletree is nestled on 35 acres in Willow Spring, North Carolina. The facility is less than 20 minutes from Fuquay Varina, Angier, Garner, and Holly Springs making it an optimal location for many families within the triangle.
The establishment consists of three spacious block barns as well as a brand new 7-stall, shed row/run-in style barn. Our barns include both 12’x12’ as well as 14’x14’ stalls with at least one exterior window. Stall flooring varies from barn to barn; however, all stalls are amply bedded with fine flake shavings. Each barn includes at least one wash stall with both hot and cold water access.
We offer a variety of locations to ride on the property including a fully covered, lighted 110’ x 180’ arena equipped with an industrial fan, a lighted 160’ x 260’ outdoor arena, 4 square lunge paddocks, a lighted spacious grass jump field, as well as trails.
We have mixed fencing across the property which includes three-board vinyl boards reinforced with electric wire around our arenas. Additionally, inner and rear fencing on the property is heavy wooden posts and no climb fencing reinforced with electrical wire across the top.