What you need for a good trail ride
When deciding to ride on the cavalcade, you need to consider the following.
You might love your horse and feel he or she is perfect for the job, but there are definite aspects that make for a good trail horse.
• there is no breed restriction, but you can't ride a stallion, rig or mare in foal
• horses must be over five years
• it is imperative that
• a horse is fit a horse must be well-behaved and not ‘ fizzy' in a group
• must be freshly shod and riders are advised to carry spare shoes
Thick saddle blankets are required to protect the horse's back from carrying a saddle and rider for many hours. Horses need to be rugged up overnight as the days are hot, but the nights get very cold.
The trail boss and wranglers keep a watchful eye, ensuring the safety of horses and riders, observing for signs of possible stress of all animals throughout.
For riders it is a time to bond with their horse. It will be carrying you through rivers, bogs, rocky terrain, and you'll be facing challenges you've likely never experienced as the terrain can sometimes be risky.
You'll be roughing it. Each night is spent in a woolshed or tent. There are long drops or portable toilets. If you're lucky there's a creek or river nearby where you can have a brisk freshen-up. Some who prefer a little home comfort have trucks and camper vans brought in by back-up drivers.
After seven or more hours in the saddle, once your horse is attended to, rugged, hard-fed, and put out to pasture, you will be rewarded with a hearty meal.
Riders carry personal items they need (or desire) on the ride such as:
• a spare set of socks (there are many creeks and rivers to cross)
• army knife
• flask of tea
• jet plane lollies
• arnica Most riders have a drizabone coat tied to the back of their saddle in case a southerly storm comes in. A back-up team takes in horse feed, rugs and other items required for the evening.