Gold-Award-Badge

GOLD DofE
HORSE RIDING EXPEDITION

5 DAYS

TRAINING & PRACTICE

5 DAYS

QUALIFYING

16+

FOR AGES

LOCATION

Union_Flag

FROM £1250pp + VAT

‘Congratulations to the Sam Sykes and Stonetrail teams for putting together a fantastic D of E gold horseback expedition. Cara, Iona and the rest of the group had a great time and were really appreciative of the preparation they received in training, the support and just how friendly and helpful you all were.’

PARENT OF PARTICIPANT

Choosing to complete a Duke of Edinburgh’s Gold Award on horseback presents participants with a unique set of challenges, but it also provides a tremendous sense of adventure and achievement. Travel by horse requires careful planning to ensure success and to overcome the challenges that participants will encounter.

Training and Practice

Sam Sykes Ltd and Stonetrail Riding Centre will provide training and practice to ensure participants are well prepared and possess the necessary skills to successfully complete the expedition phase. During the training and practice week and alongside the expedition skills set out in the DofE expedition training framework, you will learn how to:
Prepare your horse for an expedition with the correct tack and equipment.

  • Care for your horse during an expedition.
  • Ride safely in a group in open countryside.
  • Plan and navigate a safe route.
  • Ride safely on a public road.
  • Know what to do in the event of an emergency.
  • Load and unload a horse from a horse trailer.

Part of your training and practice week will be spent at the centre and part will be spent on a three day practice expedition with an overnight camps.

Participants will be expected to plan a route between each camping location, maximising use of open country, bridleways and tracks. Travelling time on horseback each day will take approximately 4 to 6 hours. The route will be ridden at a steady walking pace. Overnight grazing for the horses will be pre-arranged at a location close to each campsite.

Participants: Age & Riding Experience.

The minimum age for the DofE Gold Award Horseback Expedition is 16 years and the maximum age is 24 years.

To participate, you will need to be a competent horse rider who can walk, trot and canter, be experienced at hacking out in open countryside and riding on public roads. You should be fit and capable of riding for up to six hours each day. Prior to the course, each participant will be required to complete a Participant Riding Questionnaire.

You will need to provide your own riding hat (approved to current standards), riding boots, gloves and appropriate waterproof clothing. A hi-vis jacket or waistcoat can be provided, although you are welcome to bring your own. Saddle bags and map holders are provided by Stonetrail.

The Horses

Horseback expeditions require horses who have been specifically trained and prepared for the challenges of riding in open, remote countryside. Stonetrail Riding Centre will provide your horses for the training and practice and for the expedition. These horses have many years’ experience taking part in our own multi-day riding expeditions across some of the most remote and exposed terrain in England. The horses are calm, sensible and easy to ride. You can read more about each of them and view lots of photographs of them in action on Stonetrail’s website. Stonetrail will provide all tack and horse care. Throughout the expedition, the support vehicle and Sam Sykes Ltd staff will be following the route by road, transporting feed and supplies required each night for the horses.

Supervision

Sam Sykes Ltd and Stonetrail Riding Centre will be responsible for the safety, care and welfare of the horses and participants during the expedition. Horseback expeditions are supervised and assessed in the same way as all other land based DofE expeditions. In addition to normal remote supervision methods, riders will also be more closely supervised by a qualified member of staff for parts of the journey where there are specific hazards, such as water crossings or road crossings. In addition, the support vehicle will be positioned at strategic locations to provide assistance if necessary.

About Stonetrail

Stonetrail Riding Centre is based at Kirkby Stephen in Cumbria and specialises in horse riding holidays and multi-day trail riding events in Cumbria and the Yorkshire Dales. Established in 2008, the Centre has a ‘Highly Acclaimed’ approval rating with the British Horse Society and is licensed with Eden District Council. The centre is owned and run by Alison Sixsmith, a qualified Ride Leader who has many years’ experience organising and running trail riding expeditions.
For more information please visit, https://www.stonetrailridingcentre.com

Itinerary – Training and Practice

Day One: Training day

10.00 – Start

  • Programme and Group Introductions, medical check
  • Navigation skills
    • Features of a map
    • Compass
    • Setting the map and finding location
    • Distances
  • Day walk to cover practical aspects map and compass skills.
  • First aid.

16.00 – Return to centre

  • Stove demo
  • Hygiene talk
  • Tent pitching
  • Dinner

18.00 – Evening session – to be delivered by Stonetrail
Riding assessment

  • Expedition management – considerations on horseback
Day Two: Training day

07.30 – Start – Expedition skills continued

  • Navigation
  • Emergency procedures

13.30 – Afternoon Session – to be delivered by Stonetrail

  • Focus on horsemanship skills
  • Horse care and handling
  • Tack and fitting
  • Equipment and supplies
  • Hacking theory
  • Ride practice
  • After ride care

18.00 – Evening session

  • Cook dinner under supervision
  • Route planning for qualifying expedition
  • Route cards and map skills
    • Grid references
    • Conventional signs
    • Scale and distance
    • Measuring distance and time.
  • 20 Conditions
  • Bag Packing
  • Itinerary – Training and Practice continued
Day 3 – Practice Expedition: Day 1

07.30 – Start

  • Daily briefing – ride role allocation
  • Depart centre with full riding kit
  • Remote supervision or check point as appropriate

16.30 – Return to camp

  • After ride care
  • Set up camp
  • Dinner
  • Daily de brief – additional training
Day 4 – Practice Expedition: Day 2

07.30 – Start

Daily briefing – ride role allocation

  • Depart camp with full riding kit
  • Remote supervision or check point as appropriate

16.30 – Return to camp

  • After ride care
  • Set up camp
  • Dinner
  • Daily de brief – additional training
Day 5 – Practice Expedition: Day 3

07.30 – Start

  • Daily briefing – ride role allocation
  • Depart camp with full riding kit
  • Remote supervision or check point as appropriate.

15.00 – Return to camp

  • After ride care
  • Daily de brief

16.00 – Depart

Itinerary – Qualifying Expedition

Day One: Acclimatisation day

10.00 – Start

  • Morning session – re-cap expedition skills
    • Navigation and camp craft
  • Afternoon session – re-cap horseback expedition skills
Day Two – Qualifying Expedition: Day 1
  • Daily briefing – ride role allocation
  • Depart camp with full riding kit
  • Remote supervision or check point as appropriate
  • After ride care
  • Set up camp
Day Three – Qualifying Expedition: Day 2
  • Daily briefing – ride role allocation
  • Depart camp with full riding kit
  • Remote supervision or check point as appropriate
  • After ride care
  • Set up camp
Day Four – Qualifying Expedition: Day 3
  • Daily briefing – ride role allocation
  • Depart camp with full riding kit
  • Remote supervision or check point as appropriate
  • After ride care
  • Set up camp
Day Five – Qualifying Expedition: Day 4
  • Daily briefing – ride role allocation
  • Depart camp with full riding kit
  • Remote supervision or check point as appropriate
  • After ride care
  • Presentations and debrief

16.00 Depart

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Start Your Adventure

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