The Dartmoor Explorer

Dartmoor England: (IT-ENG01)
URL: https://www.hiddentrails.com/tour/england_dartmoor_explorer.aspx

Introduction
Dartmoor England
Experience the wild open moorlands, deep river valleys of the mystical Dartmoor National Park. This ancient landscape contains prehistoric features; round house village sites, stone circles, stone rows and evidence of past tin mining activities. Create a lasting bond with your horse companion for this trip as they guide you through their homeland. Exploring Dartmoor on horseback allows you to cover more land while still having enough time to enjoy the scenery that surrounds you. These sure-footed mounts are happy to journey with you through all varying weather and landscape types. You can choose the option of travelling to different town and staying at local hotels, inns, and farmhouses for the night, or staying at one place the entire trip and exploring different routes daily.  For the progressive ride, you'll be traveling like many of the locals from town to town, where room and board are available for both you and your four-legged friend! Indulge in the local cuisine, where most restaurants/ pubs offer farm to table meals and traditional dishes. Experience the mixture of daily rides following new trails and the inviting accommodations that offer the familial and cozy feel. Remember to keep your eyes peeled for the wildlife that call this unique area home. Immerse yourself in the timeless mystical lands of Dartmoor National Park!

In August, you will get the opportunity to visit the Chagford Show (http://www.chagfordshow.co.uk/).

In September, we attend the annual Widecombe fair (https://www.widecombefair.com/).

Accomodation

Accommodations

7-day trip (stationary option): You will be staying in the same location each night.
8-day trip (progressive option):You will be staying in various hotels, farms, and B&B's during your trip. You will be staying in 4 different locations total.

Description
All accommodations include WIFI. Laundry is not available.

7-day stationary option
The Castle Inn is a traditional 16th century inn of great character resting on the fringes of Dartmoor National Park. They have a total of 8 bedrooms, all ensuite and privately decorated. All the rooms offer tea and coffee making facilities, hair dryers, flat screen television, bath sheets, hand towels and complimentary toiletries. WIFI is available onsite. The Inn has its own restaurant/pub, where you can order dinner. Laundry is available at the farm for an additional fee.

It is also possible to be accommodated a the farm in one of 2 'shepherd hut'. One has a double bed and the other has two singles, (linen provided). Each are very cozy and come with a wood-burning stove (wood provided), table and chairs. Guests staying ‘on farm’ also have use of our lodge's kitchen and bathroom etc.
When staying on the far, we provide the ingredients for your breakfast, bread, cereals, milk.


Accommodation Itinerary (8-day progressive option) - subject to changes based on availability
Night 1 & 2: Castle Inn Lydford
Night 3: Two Bridges Hotel
Night 4 & 5: Dockwell Farm
Night 6: Three Crowns Inn
Night 7: Castle Inn Lydford

Castle Inn Lydford
The Castle Inn is a traditional 16th century inn of great character resting on the fringes of Dartmoor National Park. They have a total of 8 bedrooms, all ensuite and privately decorated. All the rooms offer tea and coffee making facilities, hair dryers, flat screen television, bath sheets, hand towels and complimentary toiletries. The Inn has its own restaurant/pub, where you can order dinner.

Two Bridges Hotel
This historic hotel is located on the banks of the beautiful West Dart River, lovely countryside sceneries in every direction. Step inside and discover a warm Devon welcome, comfortable hotel rooms in which to rest the night, fine restaurant dining, characterful lounges, and a bustling bar. There are 32 uniquely decorated bedrooms, many of which enjoy views of the West Dart River and the moorland beyond. The ensuite rooms are a delightful combination of modern facilities and traditional charm, capturing something of the splendor of Dartmoor. Wi-Fi is available in common areas.

Dockwell Farm
Dockwell farm is a traditional Dartmoor farm with a superb setting and over 400 years of history. This farmhouse accommodation has very friendly hosts, who will transfer guests to local pubs for evening meals. Rooms are private and cozy and facilities are shared. Wi-Fi is available.

Three Crowns Inn
Set in the heart of Chagford, this 13th century coaching station now provides stylish accommodations. The granite façade has an undeniable charm and the decor mixes perfectly history and comfort. The inn has 21 en-suite bedrooms each fitted with a flat-screen TV, internet connectivity and WIFI is access.

Room Occupancy
Single supplement is mandatory if we are unable to find another rider to share.


Meals

Breakfasts, picnic lunches, and a snack after rides (tea and cakes) are included. Dinners are not included, but each accommodation offer restaurants nearby for you to explore and sample the local cuisine.

Dietary Restrictions
We can cater to dietary restrictions given prior notice.

This trip includes and can accommodate special dietary requests.

Riding

Riding Level & Terrain
Riders need to be reasonably fit and at least a strong intermediate standard or better. Riders are expected to have ridden several different types of horses and can independently manage a horse’s care. Their seat is secure, they are able to control a horse at walk, trot and canter and do not apply unintentional aids to the horse when they lose balance or become unseated. They know how to rise or post to the trot and ask for and obtain a specific lead or change in lead. They are capable of riding a less experienced horse.
The terrain involves crossing streams, shallow rivers, undulating ground, up and down steep inclines, and would not be suitable for novice or inexperienced riders. 

Tack and Riding Style
We normally ride Western, however we can provide English saddles if the guests requests. Our style of riding is very much akin to ‘Natural Horsemanship’. We like riders to be relaxed and ride with soft hands.

Horses
We have a selection of fantastic Quarter Horses with calm attitude and appetite for work. All are western trained, very sure-footed and a pleasure to ride. We also have a selection of Irish hunters (some western trained some English style), all a pleasure to ride and cross the terrain with ease. Heights range from 14:3 to 16:2hh.

Guides
The guides are all local moor men or women, who know the moor well. They know where the best crossings are, and where to avoid, as there are areas where it is unsuitable for horses. Some of the guides are members the Dartmoor Rescue Group; some are range clearers for the army on the moor. All are excellent equestrians, and are first-aid trained.

Itinerary

Sample Itinerary: 8-day progressive option - subject to changes

Day 1: Arrival
We will meet all the clients at the welcoming Castle Inn Lydford in the evening for a briefing about what to expect from their stay.
Meals included: none
Overnight at Castle Inn Lydford


Day 2: Introductory Ride
Clients are collected from the Castle Inn after breakfast and taken to the Farm, where they meet their assigned horse.
Today's ride is all about making sure the rider and horse are compatible. We will start riding in the morning, with a stop for lunch. Lunches each day will be carried in saddle bags. Return to the Castle Inn in the evening.
Riding: 4-5 hours
Meals included: Breakfast & Lunch
Overnight at Castle Inn Lydford


Day 3: Ride to Two Bridges
Ride from the Farm across Dartmoor to The Two Bridges Hotel, situated in the middle of the Dartmoor National Park.
Riding: 5-6 hours (approx. 20 miles)
Meals included: Breakfast & Lunch
Overnight at Two Bridges Hotel


Day 4: Two Bridges to Drywell Farm 
Today's destination is a B&B farm, near Widecombe. This is a very beautiful moorland farm where the guests get to sample a bit of life on a moorland farm. Guests will be taken to a choice of local Inns for evening meal.
Riding: 4 hours
Meals included: Breakfast & Lunch
Overnight at Drywell Farm


Day 5:
Option A: Circular ride from Drywell.
Riding: 4 hours
Meals included: Breakfast & Lunch
Overnight at Drywell Farm


Option B: A day out of the saddle visiting local Dartmoor attractions.
Meals included: Breakfast & Lunch
Overnight at Drywell Farm


**On the August ride, we ride from Drywell to Chagford.
**On the September ride, this day will be spent at Widecombe fair (https://www.widecombefair.com/).

Day 6: Drywell Farm to Chagford
Riding: 4 hours
Meals included: Breakfast & Lunch
Overnight at the Three Crowns Inn

**On the August Ride, day out of the Saddle to visit Chagford Show (http://www.chagfordshow.co.uk/)

Day 7: Ride back to Farm
We complete our circle route today as we ride from Chagford back to our Farm.
Riding: 4-5 hours
Meals included: Breakfast & Lunch
Overnight at Castle Inn Lydford


Day 8: Departure
Departure in the morning.
Meals included: Breakfast

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Sample Itinerary: 7-day stationary option - subject to changes

Day 1: Arrival
We will meet all the clients at the welcoming Castle Inn Lydford in the evening for a briefing about what to expect from their stay.
Meals included: none
Overnight at Castle Inn Lydford


Day 2: Introductory Ride
Clients are collected from the Castle Inn after breakfast and taken to the Farm where they meet their assigned horse.
Today's ride is all about making sure the rider and horse are compatible. We will start our ride in the morning and stop for lunch. Lunches each day will be carried in saddle bags. Return to the Castle Inn in the evening.
Riding: 4-5 hours 
Meals included: Breakfast & Lunch
Overnight at Castle Inn Lydford


Day 3 - 6: Dartmoor Rides
Typical days start with breakfast at the Inn. Then, guests are collected and brought to the Farm for around 10.00am. We will be western trail riding exploring a different part of the spectacular Dartmoor landscape each day, stop for a packed lunch or stop at one of many local pubs, tie up horses outside, ride home via a different route; followed by tea and cakes at the Farm. Return to Hotel between 5 and 6pm.
Meals included: Breakfast & Lunch
Overnight at Castle Inn Lydford


Day 7: Departure
Departure in the morning.
Meals included: Breakfast

**Camp-outs are possible upon request for an additional fee. Please inquire.


Rates and Dates for The Dartmoor Explorer

Rates include:


Progressive: Accommodations, All Breakfasts and Lunches, Luggage transfer each day & 5 or 6 riding days
Stationary: Accommodation, All Breakfasts and Lunches, Luggage transfer each day & 5 riding days
Limited supply of hats available, but guests are recommended to bring their own.

Packages and Options



  • SeasonYearDescriptionGBP ~US$
    A
    20208-day trip, B&B (Progressive option)£1250$1650
    • Single supplement£175$235
  • B
    20207-day trip, B&B (Stationary option)£995$1315
    • Single supplement£150$200
      Discount if choosing to be accommodated on the farm - please inquire£0$0
The US Dollar Rate is Based on Exchange Rate of 1.32

Rates Note:

We can offer as short as a 3day/2night stay for the stationary ride. Please inquire for rates.
Camp-outs available. Please inquire.

* prices are per person based on double/twin occupancy

Rates Note:

We can offer as short as a 3day/2night stay for the stationary ride. Please inquire for rates.
Camp-outs available. Please inquire.


Transfer and Other Charges:



 DescriptionGBP~US$
2020 Transfer from Exeter, roundtrip, per car
This is a "Group Rate"
£ 80 $110

Season Tour Dates  Min / MaxReserve
B 2020 06/07 - 06/13 7d / 6n 7-day trip, B&B (Stationary ... 2 /8 Expired
B 2020 06/21 - 06/27 7d / 6n 7-day trip, B&B (Stationary ... 2 /8 Expired
A 2020 06/27 - 07/04 8d / 7n 8-day trip, B&B (Progressive... 2 /8 Expired
B 2020 07/05 - 07/11 7d / 6n 7-day trip, B&B (Stationary ... 2 /8 Expired
B 2020 07/19 - 07/25 7d / 6n 7-day trip, B&B (Stationary ... 2 /8 Expired
B 2020 07/26 - 08/01 7d / 6n 7-day trip, B&B (Stationary ... 2 /8 Expired
B 2020 08/02 - 08/08 7d / 6n 7-day trip, B&B (Stationary ... 2 /8 Expired
A 2020 08/15 - 08/22 8d / 7n 8-day trip, B&B (Progressive... 2 /8 Sold Out
A 2020 09/04 - 09/11 8d / 7n 8-day trip, B&B (Progressive... 2 /8 Reserve
B 2020 09/13 - 09/19 7d / 6n 7-day trip, B&B (Stationary ... 2 /8 Reserve
B 2020 09/20 - 09/26 7d / 6n 7-day trip, B&B (Stationary ... 2 /8 Reserve

Dates Note:

Rates do not include:


Progressive: Dinners, Transfers from/to exeter & Gratuities
Stationary: Dinners, Transfers from/to exeter & Gratuities

Note:

Due to COVID-19 Corona virus pandemic and certain travel restrictions we are applying some temporary policy changes to some of our tours.

For The Dartmoor Explorer (IT-ENG01):
If restrictions are in place and you are unable to travel we are offering the following:
  • Possible to postpone your trip to later in the 2020 at no extra charge
  • Possible to postpone your trip to 2021 at 2020 rates, provided full payment is received by 31st of Dececember 2020
  • Anyone wishing to book a trip for 2021 can do so at 2020 rates, if full payment is received by 31st of December 2020
Guests that have a car are asked to drive from the B&B to the farm each day, for any that we transfer, the driver and the passengers are to wear a face mask. The same applies for airport pickups.
All horses will be tacked prior to guest arrival, wranglers will also untack the horses at the end of the ride. Wranglers will be wearing face coverings and gloves when tacking up and mounting guests.
No guests to go in the stables or tack room.
In the guest toilet, wipes are provided for each user to wipe all surfaces they have touched before leaving.
Each guest is given a COVID-19 information sheet on arrival.

We want you to have a enjoyable stay with us, however due to the current restrictions there are additional precautions we ask everyone to adhere to.
  • Additional personal items required:
  • Face covering/mask (does not need to be a surgical mask)
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Pack of wipes
  • Surgical gloves (optional)
Precautions whilst at the farm:
  1. Please be conscious of social distancing at all times, try to keep at least 1m+ from all other guests and wranglers.
  2. Unfortunately we are unable to transfer guests between the B&B and the farm; please drive your car to and from Meldon each day.
  3. When using the farm toilet, before leaving, please wipe off any surfaces that have been touched with the wipes provided.
  4. Our wranglers will tack and untack the horses each day, please give them room to work around the horses. Our wranglers have been instructed to wear a face covering and surgical gloves when working in the stable area. These will be removed when mounted.
  5. Only the wranglers to go in the stables and tack room. Please leave plenty of room around the stables door area to facilitate easy access.
  6. We will provide lunch boxes each day, on returning from the ride, please empty any leftover contents in the bin and wipe out with the wipes provided. The lunch boxes will be cleaned each night. You will be provided with a water bottle, which you will be responsible for during your stay. Please ensure it is left at the farm when you leave.
  7. We can only ride in groups of 6, As there are 8 guests + wranglers, we will therefore go out in two groups of 4+2 wranglers, 5 minutes apart, we will be in sight of each other most of the time, and have lunch at the same spot slightly apart.
  8. As this is our first fully booked week, it will take some adjusting to, please bear with us as some things may take longer than usual.


For more information please visit our COVID-19 Updates page at https://www.hiddentrails.com/article/covid19update.aspx

Other Info
Meeting: Castle Inn Lydford
Airport: Exeter
Transfer: Exeter

Climate:
                                            Okehampton area


Month

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Average High Temperature (°F)

43

43

46

50

56

61

64

64

59

54

48

44

Average Low Temperature (°F)

37

37

39

40

46

51

55

54

51

47

42

39

Average High Temperature (°C)

6

6

8

10

13

16

18

18

15

12

9

7

Average Low Temperature (°C)

3

3

4

5

8

11

13

12

11

8

5

4

Source: NOAA


Seasons
Dartmoor has a temperate climate which is generally wetter and milder than locations at similar height in the rest of England. The weather year round varies from approximately 5 °C - 18°C. July and August are the warmest months and the fall and winter sees more rainfall. However, you should keep in mind that Dartmoor is known for its changeable weather.

The Farm sits at 800 ft, we rise to 2,000ft where it can be quite a bit cooler than at the farm. We strongly recommend warm riding wear and good riding waterproofs, a long slicker type is usually the most practical.

What To Bring:
What to bring

'There is no such thing as bad weather, just inappropriate clothing!’

Meldon Farm sits at 800 ft, we rise to 2,000ft where it can be quite a bit cooler than at the farm, we strongly recommend warm riding wear and good riding waterproofs, a long slicker type is usually the most practical.
  • Riding hat (mandatory- best to bring your own because we only have a very limited supply and cannot guarantee fit)
  • Boots with heels are also mandatory
  • Comfortable warm riding wear, jeans, polo shirts, jumpers, fleece shower-proof coat etc.
  • Chaps full or half. (optional)
  • Waterproof coat, ‘Drizabone’ slicker type is recommended
  • Lip balm and sun cream
  • Casual evening wear