What should I bring? Should I show up earlier?
For the ride and swim, wear your swimming suit under your outfit; eventually bring a towel, to dry off.
Please come 20 minutes before your scheduled ride, so that we can fill up the forms, get you fitted with a helmet, and give you a briefing.
What should I wear?
Long pants/stretchy jeans/sportswear to stay comfy on the saddle (If you wear shorts, your skin will rub on the leather and you will be sore)
- NO jandals/crocs
- YES trainers/gumboots/walking shoes
Do you pick up customers in Paihia?
Yes, up to 4 customers; usually in front of Isite, or Kings Road ; for busy cruise ship days, pickups will be on Bayview Road.
Why is there a 90 kg weight limit?
While most healthy horses can easily carry a rider and saddle, they do have their limits. Now researchers have identified a threshold for when a rider is too heavy for a horse to comfortably carry.
If you are in doubt, please err on the side of overestimation. If upon arrival the riders are of questionable weight, we have a scale on-site. If a rider is too large for the horse reserved, they may not be able to ride, since there may be no large substitutes available. To avoid possible embarrassment please be honest!
We are a group with mixed riding abilities, what should we expect?
We always go at the pace of the slowest rider.
Do I get a refund if I back-out before the ride?
We don’t want you to ride if you are frightened. Horseback riding should be fun and enjoyable. However we have reserved your horse for you, fed him, turned away other riders, tacked up your horse for you, etc.
Therefore, we ask that you pay for your ride if you back out or only take part of the ride.
What about cancellations?
We ride rain or shine and are open all year round. If you decide not to ride please call to cancel at least 3 hours in advance. Please respect our horses and staff and provide them with enough time for cancellations.
Please don’t wait until the last minute to cancel, and please avoid not showing up without any notice, as everyone is on the payroll to get the ride ready!
Will I get my full ride if I arrive late?
Chances are no! If you arrive late and we allow you to take the full length ride we will run late for the next group. It is also not fair for our staff to work after hours because of your late arrival. This is why we ask that you arrive 20 minutes early to allow us enough time to do our part and get you on your horses and out for your scheduled ride. Yes, there are emergencies sometimes and we understand that and can work with you if we get a phone call no later than 1 and a half hour before your scheduled ride.
About riding abilities…
Tell us your actual experience and comfort level to ensure your safety, and avoid embarrassment.
Please, do not ask if we can “Run” the horses. This will be an automatic giveaway that you are not a horse person. Safety comes first so the guides will only travel at the pace that is safe for everyone. We want everyone, including our horses to be comfortable and enjoy their ride.
If you haven’t learnt to ride properly, you would inadvertently pull on the reins or bounce on their back at a trot. We look after our horses like gold and in return, they have the most wonderful characters.
Owning your own horse or “years of riding” do not predetermine an advanced level.
We can break down horseback riding levels into different categories:
- Total beginner – minimum horse riding experience – first timer – may have had a couple trail rides
- Advanced beginner – maybe had some lessons – knows the basic handling and commands (go/stop/turn)
- Novice – had lessons – knows the basic commands – knows how to post the trot
- Intermediate – have lessons – rides in a specific/multiple disciplines – post the trot & canters without loosing balance and without applying unintentional aids to the horse
- Experienced – extensive horse riding experience through the years – seat is strong at all gaits – complete control on any kind of horse – confident with green horses
- Advanced – experienced + teaches horses/riders and/or competes