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6 Days Practical Course and Horse Riding Holiday in the Carpathian Mountains, Ukraine

Poloninske Hospodarstvo, Zakarpattia Oblast, Ukraine

Ukraine Beginner to Advanced Horse Riding Course and Holiday

Both tourists who take part in this course for the first time and who have already received the first and second levels can take part in this group. There will be basic lectures plus new useful information for levels 1 and 2 and horseback ridings of a basic course plus the special additional program for levels 1 and 2.

Key Information

  • Rider Weight Limit: 198 pounds / 90 kilograms
  • Horse Height Range: 13 to 13.6 hands
  • Tack Type: Cavalry
  • Horse Breed: Hucul horse

Meet the instructors

Oleksandr & Julia
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Highlights

  • Daily horse riding
  • Learn about the Hutsul horse, its origin, and characteristics
  • Acquaintance with a harness, saddling, horseback riding tour, and offsaddling
  • Learn about herd psychology (ethology), man and herd, and human movements
  • Daily lectures, practical training, and horseback riding in the mountains
  • 3 tasty meals per day and insurance included
  • The herd of tribal Hucul horses
  • 5 nights accommodation

Skill level

  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced

Styles


5 days with instruction in English
The organizer also speaks: Japanese, Polish, Russian, Ukrainian
Group size: Maximum of 20 participants
Airport transfer included: Uzhhorod International Airport
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Accommodation

Check-in Time:
11:00
Check-out Time:
11:00

Imagine going for a hiking tour to the mountains and living in a herd of horses. You will stay in a common 16-seat large tent with beds and mattresses, or in your personal tent. There is free space protected from wind and rain for creativity, lectures, and meetings. The camp is equipped with a bathtub and shower.

Program

A discussion of horseback ridings on the basis of the footage is compulsory (every horseback riding is shot with a camera). There is wild energy of freedom here, high in the mountains. The herd of Hutsul horses can generously share with this one. Horses, field conditions, and wildlife will help you find the real you. Since 2001, the farm has been breeding Hutsul horses and mountain horse riding.

Besides the goal of preserving a unique aboriginal Ukrainian breed, there is another one – riding happy horses in the mountains. Taking into account all the experience gained during these years with horses and equestrian tourism, both with tourists, newcomers, and professional riders, they have created a special five-day course.

During the course, they share their experience and knowledge theoretically and practically (exercises, training in the treatment of horses and herds, in horseback riding across the country and mountainous terrain) they prepare a horseback rider who can ride a horse according to his level in the Carpathians.

Horseback riding tours will be organized as they prepare horse-drawn tourists. Horse-drawn tourists will receive offers of tours in accordance with their level of training. There are two programs:

For Beginners

The Hutsul horses move in a balanced way and so smoothly that for many years, they have set tourists on horseback and walked with them to the mountains. The horses move smoothly, often simply bearing their tourist who had to be returned safe and sound. EquitoursUA wants to ride happy horses in the mountains, which prefer being with a man on the tour.

How many impressions, emotions, and experience people get communicating with horses in the tour! So, having such a horse, with a great desire and self-improvement, they can prepare a horseback rider of one of four levels during this five-day course. Later, during other tours, you can improve your level. If you dreamed of riding a horse, participating in horseback tours, and have a passion for horses and mountains, you are welcome!

For Advanced Riders

For the sake of keeping the breed, the horses at FE "Polonynske Hospodarstvo" live on free grazing, without a stable. They get nothing from a man. They fight against the wild beast in the valleys. At the same time, the horses get peace and stability, they perform their part of work for that. What is happening here is a symbiosis between a man and a horse, it is very important not to cross the narrow line. %Therefore, you will need some additional knowledge about the behavior of horses, such behavior is more natural for the horse, this knowledge will be useful in working with other horses. You will come to a horse, not a horse to you. Living with a herd of independent horses, learning to understand them, and working with them is one of the goals of the course.

Few of the riders know the true strength and character of the Hutsul horse at will, at home - in the Carpathians. The peculiarities of the body structure of the Hutsul horse and the nuances of mountain riding are also important. They someway influence the seat (EquitoursUA uses a military seat).

You will receive your level of horseback rider from 1 to 4 after graduation of the course. After that, you will be able to take part in horseback riding tours according to your level. The level can be raised during subsequent tours. This is a really unique experience with horses, which EquitoursUA is ready to share with you.

If you dreamed of going on serious horseback riding tours, adore horses and mountains and want to open the horse world from a different angle, you are welcome!

Day 1

Goal: Acquaintance with a group, a herd of horses, and the work of the farm

  • 11:00 Meeting in Uzhhorod city (main entrance to the railway station), breakfast, tasting of Transcarpathian dishes, acquaintance with the group. The off-road vehicle is delivering the stuff. Participants will walk five kilometers to the FE "Polonynske Hospodarstvo" down a picturesque marked tourist route.
  • Two hours rest upon arrival at the farm
  • Lecture 1: The Hutsul horse, its origin, and characteristics

You will learn about stockbreeding of the farm, features of keeping horses at the farming enterprise and their characteristics, basic rules of behavior in the herd of horses, history of Farm "Polonynske Hospodarstvo", and there will be grading of mountain equestrian tourist's levels and the possibilities (according to Poloninske Hospodarstvo’s system).

  • Practical training: Acquaintance with the herd, balance exercises, and exercises with a leash

Day 2

Goal: Preparation for horse riding in mountain conditions, acquaintance with a harness, saddling, first hiking tour, and offsaddling

  • Exercises (stretching and balance exercises, body coordination)
  • Lecture 2

Features of Hutsul horse’s body structure and a seat on a horseback in mountain conditions (instruction), harness, saddling, offsaddling, the principle of mountain equestrian tourism and tours, the cooperation of the instructor-guide, and the mountain horseback rider beginner.

Practical training:

  • Hiking to the foot of Hostrapolonyna (1.5 hours)
  • Bringing horses from the electrified wire fence
  • Practical instruction
  • Saddling of horses
  • Mounting
  • Horseback riding (one hour)
  • Offsaddling the horses
  • Bringing them to electrified wire fence.
  • Discussion of the ridding tour
  • Tasks and recommendations for the next day for the group and individually for each participant

Day 3

Goal: To obtain theoretical and practical knowledge on the basis of etiology, which will help feel harmoniously and safely in the horse's herd, facilitate cooperation, and understanding of horse rider both on the ground and on the horseback.

  • Exercises (stretching and balance exercises, body coordination)
  • Lecture 3

Herd, herd psychology (ethology), man and herd, and human movements and intonation

Practical training:

  • Bringing horses from the electrified wire fence
  • Saddling of the horses. Mounting
  • Horseback riding (1.5 hours)
  • Offsaddling the horses. Bringing them to electrified wire fence.
  • Discussion of the riding tour.
  • Tasks and recommendations for the next day for the group and for each participant individually.

Day 4

Goal: Acquaintance with the history of the horse domestication, the history of Ukrainian aboriginal breeds and cooperation of the Ukrainians with a horse. Acquaintance with the basics of working with a free horse on the horseback and on the ground. Applying the gained knowledge in practice.

  • Exercises (stretching and balance exercises, body coordination)
  • Lecture 4

The history of the horse domestication and horse-riding, three Ukrainian aboriginal breeds: Warhorse, Tarpan, Cossacks and horses, and Hutsul and his horse

Practical training:

  • Bringing horses from the electrified wire fence
  • Practical work in the herd (using knowledge of the features of cooperation with a free horse and a herd. You take horses from the herd, commenting every action and step)
  • Saddling of the horses
  • Mounting
  • Horseback riding (three hours) to the top of Hostra or Rivnapolonynas
  • Offsaddling the horses
  • Bringing them to the electrified wire fence
  • Discussion of the tour and the practical part
  • Tasks and recommendations for the next day for the group and to each participant individually.

Day 5

Goal: To solidify all knowledge gained in practice. Getting one of the four levels of a mountain equestrian tourist.

  • Exercises (stretching and balance exercises, body coordination)

Practical training:

  • Bringing horses from the electrified wire fence.
  • Practical work in the herd (using knowledge of the features of cooperation with a free horse and a herd (we take horses)
  • Saddling of horses
  • Mounting
  • Horseback riding (three hours) to the top of Rivna or Hostrapolonynas
  • Offsaddling the horses
  • Bringing them to the electrified wire fence
  • Discussion of the tour and all the days of the course
  • Assignment one of the four levels of a horse-drawn tourist to each participant

Day 6

  • Packing things, loading them into the offroader
  • Breakfast
  • Lottery
  • Participants walk to the second water intake (five kilometers)

Important information

Please note that for participants who can't sit on the horse right and can’t take up his position in space, they won’t be allowed to go on a tour to peaks for the sake of his own safety. However, they can go on a tour to a lower mountain height, adequate to his physical abilities.

Why is there a gradation level of an equestrian tourist?

Firstly, since the main thing for the tour is the safety of the tourist, the group is guided by the weakest participant. Therefore, in order for the further hiking tours in the mountains be pleasant and interesting for the whole group, your guide will gather the participants of the tour of the same or an approximate level. Secondly, the presence of gradation levels motivates participants to get a higher level and go into a more complex hiking tour.

What are the levels of a horseback rider?

  • Level 1: Adequately treats the horses, independently saddles the experienced horses, exhibits stirrups, sits on a horse, gets off a horse. Wearing a bridle. The landing is close to the ideal (military landing)
  • Level 2: Does not swing in the saddle when goes down. Ideal mounting on the step, perfect or close to the perfect at the trot, work with leashes, does not allow to eat a horse, can independently send and move a horse, easily bypasses trees and obstacles, does not tighten the horse.
  • Level 3: Easy control of the horse. Step and trot are perfect. Control the speed of the step, working with the feet. Without sharp movements, the cries can independently withdraw from the group of riders.
  • Level 4: Can easily take a horse, get around, all gaits perfectly fit in the mountain style, a gallop without a saddle and in a saddle, easily goes down from any mountain. Understanding the herd.

There is always an opportunity for growth, as soon as the coaches see that there are enough active participants with Level 4, they will open Level 5.

Are there any age restrictions?

Age of participants starts from 12 years. Then everything depends on your health and physical well-being.

How can I prepare for a tour (course)?

Basic training is physical fitness. Start doing exercises or attend a sports club in order to increase stamina, stretch, and tone up the muscles. Exercises for the coordination of movements are also important. Poloninska Economy will advise you some sets of exercises.

Is there a weight limit?

The Hutsul horse is extremely strong and hardy, it can carry a load of 100 kilograms / 220 pounds on a mountainous terrain, regardless of its compactness. A beginner rider, not holding a balance, increases the sense of a horse's weight several times. Weight limit for the beginners is up to 90 kilograms / 198 pounds.

Coaching team

The team was created from the enthusiasts of the development of extreme mountain equestrian tourism in Ukraine and people who want to ensure that the Hutsul horse was valued correctly and on merits, headed by the owner and breeder of horses Ihnatenko Oleksandr. Everyone came here not by chance, and everyone is an important part of the team (there are members of the team that live far, but penetrated the goal and help with their skills and talents, all this creates the club of Hutsul horse).

Everyone has his personal life and profession, but the common goal has joined Poloninska Economy. Oleksandr has been breeding the Hutsul horses and extreme mountain horses since 2001. The main goal of the practical course and the actual horseback riding is to preserve the Hutsul breed, test horse for labor productivity, and find a niche for the Hutsul horse where it will be in its place.

Instructors

Oleksandr

Julia

Location

The course shall be conducted at the unique private farm for breeding the Hutsul horses in their natural area. There are no deniers and stables, horses do not feed or sow, even in winter. The farm with summer pastures is at the altitude of 1,000 meters above sea level. Horses are grazed either in electro-feeding fences not far from the farm or freely in the mountain valleys of the Rivna or Hostra.

Only the mountains are around, it is 6.5 kilometers to the nearest village. Horses are self-sufficient, do not receive anything from people, and have self-sufficient personalities; they are strong physically and morally and have their own opinion. The fact that this is a symbiosis of a person and a horse, the person gives the horse comfort and relative calm and protection, for which the horses perform their part of work with tourists.

Food

You will be provided with three Ukrainian meals per day. A vegetarian menu is possible. Dishes are cooked in an open fire in the “kolyba”. There is also a bar for those who wish to buy a tasty beer, etc., during free time after the day course is finished.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

The following drinks are included:

  • Water
  • Coffee
  • Tea

The following dietary requirement(s) are served and/or catered for:

  • Vegetarian
  • Regular (typically includes meat and fish)
  • Other dietary requirements on request
If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation

What's included

  • 3 daily meals
  • 5 days with daily lectures and practical training
  • 5 nights accommodation
  • Transfer from the meeting point and back

What's not included

  • Airfare
  • Personal expenses

How to get there

Recommended Airports

Arrival by airplane

Please book your flight to arrive at Uzhhorod International Airport (UDJ). The meeting point is at the airport's main entrance.

Airport: Uzhhorod International Airport Airport transfer included: Uzhhorod International Airport No additional charges. You can request this in the next step.

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 20% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid on arrival.
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