Horseback Mexico is a small, personal horse riding, schooling and breeding facility based in Rojas de Cuauhtemoc in the eastern valley of Oaxaca, in southern Mexico.Owners Mary Jane Gagnier, Bobby Ortiz Jr. and Gabriel Mendoza Gagnier enjoy guiding rides, teaching riding lessons & facilitating equine therapy sessions. They are Red Cross certified in Basic First Aid and top endurance riders in Mexico.
Mary Jane Gagnier
a native Canadian, has lived in Oaxaca since 1987 and for decades has explored the many regions of this state. She considers herself a cultural interpreter as evident in her book “Oaxaca Celebration: Family, Food & Fiestas in Teotitlan”, a testimony to the traditions of a Zapotec village. Her passion for rural life extends to the enthusiasm and knowledge she brings to her guided rides. Mary Jane is a certified yoga instructor and applies its principals to her riding and teaching.
She regularly competes in endurance competitions and in Oct. 2011 won 1st place in the 80 km. distance riding 7 yr. old Arabian horse Zeb . She has taken endurance riding clinics with John Crandell, Christoph Schork and Dian Woodward.
Bobby Ortiz Jr.
born in Texas, has ridden and trained horses all his life. Bobby had a successful career as a quarter horse racehorse jockey in the southern U.S. before shifting to the training of Arabian racehorses. The horses you ride with Horseback Mexico were personally trained by Bobby, all are willing, cheerful trail ride and endurance horses.
Bobby’s relaxed manner and great sense of humor make him fine company on the trails while his years of practical knowledge and common sense horsemanship make him a excellent teacher. From novice to advanced, riders improve quickly under Bobby’s clear, confidence-building instruction. Bobby and Mary Jane have shared their love of horses since 2008.
Gabriel Mendoza Gagnier
is Mary Jane’s son, a 2nd year student of veterinarian medicine at the UPAEP University in the state of Puebla and top-ranking Mexican youth endurance rider.
Gabriel represented Mexico in the North American Young Riders Endurance Ride championships in 2011 and 2012, finishing Top 10 each time. In 2009 together with Canada, Mexico won the team silver medal in the 75 mile competition. A native Oaxacan, ( who speaks fluent English and Spanish ) he is both fun and informative on the trail – a fund of local knowledge.