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8 Day Riding the Salt Way in the Snowy Mountains Pack Trip in Romania

Hipparion, Gáll Csaba, Vararilor 13, Gheorgheni, Harghita, Romania

Horse Riding Holiday in Romania

During this particular riding tour we would like to follow the “route of the salt” beyond the Snowy Mountains (Havasok). You will travel on the salt mine route while discovering the hidden Szekler farming villages and several "Esztena’s”. These were the trails where the salt was led from the salt mine Parajd through the Alps on oxcarts to the river Maros, there it was loaded up from the Romanian ancestors to wooden rafts, and after strenuous voyages, it finally landed in distant countries.

Key information

  • Riders Weight Limit: 231 pounds / 105 kilograms (please send an inquiry if exceeding the limit)
  • Horse Height Range: 13 to 16 hands
  • Tack Type: comfortable, German, and Swiss military saddles
  • Horse Breed: mostly mixtures of Lipican horses with local breed

Highlights

  • 6 riding days
  • Approximate daily riding time: 6 hours
  • Ride through the wild forests of Harghita
  • Ride up to Sipos Mountain's peak
  • 7 nights' accommodation
  • 3 meals per day

Skill level

  • Intermediate

Styles


6 days with instruction
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Accommodation

Throughout this tour, you will be staying in a guesthouse.

Program

Day 1

Arrival to Gheorgheni (Gyergyószentmiklós) in the afternoon, after that, you are leaving with a jeep on trails through the forest to Hipparion ranch (15 kilometers). Afterward, you'll have dinner followed by a conversation about the trails and an explanation of the regulations.

Day 2: Kovacs Peter to FeketeRez

After breakfast, Hipparion will assign the horses for the trek and learn proper packing and preparation of pack horses.

You'll then saddle up and head away from the ranch to Kovacs Peter to the River Olt spring where you will take a break. What applies to you, also goes for the horses, you give them their rest and let them drink.

Then, you'll ride a steep ascent up to “Sóvető” Mountain until you reach the mountain of Sipos, where you will take a break for lunch at its peak (1568 meters).

There, you will have good views of North Harghita. Then, you descend along the “Lok” ridge on a wild path that will lead you to “FeketeRez’s” Mountain where you will camp tonight nearby the “esztena” (pastoral quarters).

Day 3: FeketeRez to Ördög Lake

You'll depart the mountain and descent further to Marosfő, where you will ride through the Maros / Mures River and then onward into the mountains surrounding “Harghita”.

At first, you will ride the peak of “CsikMagasa” (1153 meters) and then climb again to “Osztoros” (1384 meters). Today, you'll take a break for a special occasion. You are on a special spot where the basin of “”Gyergyó” and the mountains of “Görgényi” will be to your right and the “Csiki basin” and snowy Csiki mountains to our left. It will be delightful.

Afterward, you continue on horseback again to “Ölyves” peak and turn towards the major ridge of “Harghita”. You will ride a natural wind-cut path as you descend to the camp near “Ördög” Lake, where you will enjoy bubbling Romanian stew after taking a short walk to the swamp lake.

Day 4: Ördog Lake to Ivo

Leaving the campsite, you'll ride through the wild forests of “Harghita”. Here, you'll find the tracks of bears and the peeled trees they leave behind. Riding up to “Fertő” peak (1589 meters), you stop for a moment and revel in the beautiful impressions of the imposing rocks of “Nagy Hagymás”. Then, you'll descend again through the vast pasture of “Fertő” and into the valley and stream of “Ivo”. You'll stay the night near the Panzio of “Tündérkert” in “Ivo”.

Day 5: Ivo to Szekelyvarsag

You'll bid goodbye to your kind hosts in “Ivo” and head for the plateau of “Harghita” where you can enjoy some exciting gallops. At the edge of the plateau, you will see a glimpse of the “Zetelaki” reservoir.

Crossing the “Sikaszó” stream, you will find yoursef in the southern part of the “Görgényi” Snowy Mountains and ancient pine forest as you enter the farming world of “Székelyvárság”.

Day 6: Szekelyvarsag to Putna

You'll start the day with a one kilometer hike to the Grave of “UzBence”. Then, you'll saddle up again and explore the entirety of the “Szekelyvarsag” village and pastureland by horseback.

When you have made a full exploration tour of the area, you will find the salt mine paths that will lead you to “Putna” and after all you shall find the little house on the meadow, where you stay overnight in.

Day 7: Putna to Kovacs Peter

Today, you will navigate a labyrinth of streams as you head toward the “Gyergyo” basin. Again, you’ll have a chance to enjoy some short and fast gallops (when the terrain permits) along the way to the “Maros / Mures” River.

This was the final destination for the salt from the mines, before loading on river vessels. The horses will drink from the river, while you all cool off on a quick break, before picking up the pace again for another great gallop through the river basin, heading back towards the mountains. You'll climb, homeward bound, for Peter Kovacs and the home base farm.

Day 8: Kovacs Peter to home

You'll say goodbyes to the horses, your new friends, and the beautiful “Szekely “region and return back home.

Location

This horse riding holiday will take place in Harghita area in Romania.

Food

You will be served stew-boiled food twice a day and a picnic for lunch.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

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

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

Things to do (optional)

  • Bear watching in their natural area (available for additional cost)

What's included

  • Tour leading
  • Stewing pot meal (2 times a day) and by a daily picnic lunch
  • Riding accessories, saddles, and saddlebags
  • 7 nights' accommodations

What's not included

  • Healthcare
  • Travel
  • Alcoholic beverages

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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