Terms and Conditions
On our trail riding holidays we will be travelling many miles a day in the saddle, riding up and down hills and over rough terrain and you must be capable of riding in a balanced manner for your horses sake! We will be crossing rivers, galloping along beaches and may need to jump small natural obstacles, like ditches or fallen trees so you need to be a competent rider, able to control a horse at speed. You will be expected to help take care of your horse at the during the ride, just basic catching, feeding, watering grooming and tacking-up. If you are unsure of how to do any of these things please make us aware and we will show you and help you until you feel comfortable doing them yourself - if you would prefer not to, that's fine, we will be happy to do it for you. At certain times on the trail rides, you may be expected to dismount and lead your horse where we feel it might be unsafe to ride, or it would be unreasonable for the horse to be expected to carry you.
Our long distance riding vacations are mostly for the experienced adult rider. You must be over 18 years old at the start of your holiday unless you are accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. Our minimum age for long distance trails is 12 years old, and the same riding ability level as discribed above applies. However on our petal rides and daily picnic rides we can cater for unaccompanied young people over 10 years old. For the petal rides, although youngsters can ride unaccompanied, we cannot provide accomodation for unaccompanied under 18's at present. Riders on petal rides whatever age must have a good level of riding competance,however on the daily picnic rides, we can tailor the rides to suit the ability of the group, although we would probably not recommend a full days ride for complete beginners!
Due to the tough nature of our trails and the distances covered per day, we have a weight limit of 14 stone (200lbs or 90kilos). Most of our ponies will carry 12 stone easily, but we only have a couple who are large enough to carry more weight over the steep hills and rough terrain at present – although this may change in the future. Note added Nov 08 - We now have one horse that can carry 16 stone (225lb or 102kilos).
If you are bringing your own horse on one of our rides, you must ensure that it is fit enough to cope with a daily ride of 15 to 25 miles, part of which may be done at speed. Although most of our rides are off road, your horse must be calm in traffic, as some road work is unavoidable in order for us to link trails and in some areas of blanket bog, the only safe way through is to use the road – although it has to be said that most of the roads in this area are single track and very quiet, we do sometimes meet lorries and tractors! We will provide grazing at the end of the days riding, as well as hard feed and hay if necessary – however if your horse requires special feed, then this will need to be brought with you. You will be expected to attend to your own horses feeding, grooming and tacking up. We only have stabling available on our petal rides, and at two of our overnight stops on some trail rides, so your horse will need to be able to live out – if you need to bring rugs, they will be forwarded on with your luggage. Your horse must be fully insured and its’ vaccinations must be up to date, for both tetanus and equine influenza.
If there is an outbreak of strangles in your area, please for the sake of our horses, do not be tempted to bring your horse! In this case we will do our best to provide you with one of ours if available.
The horses are generally all turned out together at night, so it is important that your horse is comfortable sharing his space with other horses! If you know that your horse might find it difficult to share, please let us know, as we can normally fence a section of the field off with electric tape. It is important that your horse boxes easily. Remember when booking please ensure that you are honest about your riding ability and that of your horse! This is essential for your own safety and to ensure the enjoyment of everyone on the ride.
Your Responsibilities/Conduct and Safety
Riding is a high risk sport - for your own safety you must comply with the instructions of Highlands Unbridled staff at all times.
You must conduct yourself in a safe manner whilst riding or handling horses. Our horses have been selected carefully for their behaviour and suitability for the job that they are doing, however you ride on the understanding that no horse, however calm and normally sensible, is ever completely predictable and may react adversly in certain conditions.
By signing the booking form you agree that if for any reason, including your inability, behaviour or health the management or ride leader feels that you may endanger the safety or welfare of yourself, the other riders, staff, the horses or any other person, they may refuse to let you ride. We reserve the right to cancel the ride of any rider who at any time appears to constitute a risk to themselves or the other riders, staff or horses. Any expenses incurred shall be the responsibility of that rider and no refund will be given. You will be provided with saddle bags for the ride, and your luggage will be forwarded between accommodations, however it is your responsibility to keep your personal effects safe, and Highlands Unbridled accept no responsibility for loss or damage to your personal effects. Before you ride, you will be required to sign a form stating that you accept that you ride at your own risk.
If you have a medical condition, we must be made aware of this at the time of booking. You must ensure that you bring enough of any medication you may need to see you through the duration of the entire ride, as you may not be able to get what you need locally.
If you have any special dietary requirements please notify us at the time of booking, as we need to inform our accomodation providers well in advance. Our accommodation is often in very remote areas, and they may only go into town for supplies once a week therefore it is imperative that they know of any special dietary needs in plenty of time to plan menus.
We are a small stables, with a limited number of horses therefore booking is essential. Although we offer short breaks and day rides which can be generally be booked right up until the date of arrival, spaces are very limited on our longer trail rides. Due to the low number of hotel rooms in the areas we travel into, we can only have space for 6 - 8 riders, depending on which ride you choose, so it is essential that you book as early as possible in order to secure a place.
All riding holidays are subject to a £200 deposit per person payable at the time of booking. This is reduced for short breaks of 3 days or less to £100 and working/horsecare holidays require a £50 deposit. This deposit is non-refundable
The balance of your payment will be due no later than 4 weeks prior to your arrival date. If you book your holiday within 4 weeks of your arrival, then the total cost will be due immediately. If payment is not received by the due date, your holiday may be cancelled. There will be no refund for cancellation of holiday within 4 weeks of your arrival date.
Changes to Itinerary
Sometimes it may be necessary to change our planned itinerary. This may be due to bad weather conditions, impassable trails, or the closure of trails. By signing the booking form you accept that If it is deemed by the management or ride leader that it would be unsafe or impossible to use the planned itinerary, that route may be changed.
In extreme circumstances, it may be possible that Highlands Unbridled have to cancel your holiday. in these circumstances, we will offer you alternative arrangements, however if these are unacceptable to you we will refund any monies paid by you, but will not be responsible for any other losses incurred.
It is a booking condition that all clients must have travel insurance that covers them against personal injury, medical expenses, death and repatriation for the full duration of their ride (with the excepion of single day rides).
We also recommend that your cover extends to holiday cancellation, personal effects and currency. You will be required to sign an indemnity form before riding.
Check our Insurance page for more information on our recommended insurer.