Black Mountains Trail

Wales Wales: (IT-WARS)
URL: http://www.hiddentrails.com/tour/wales_black_mountains_trail.aspx

Introduction
Wales Wales
Explore the wild reaches of the Black Mountains!

The horses on this riding holiday are beautiful, fine, fit Welsh cobs who will surprise you with their sureness of foot and superb balance. Compact, intelligent and strong, they are ideally suited to the hills and mountains of the area. The terrain is varied and includes open moor-land, thick forests, picturesque country lanes and narrow mountain ridges. During your holiday there is plenty of opportunity for trots and canters and if you are up for it, there is even the chance to jump logs and ditches - all optional of course! With almost 40 years of experience and knowledge of the region, our partner leads some of the best horseback rides available through the regal mountains, mysterious bogs, dense forests and clear rivers of the Welsh countryside. Come for a week of guided trail riding that progressively gets more challenging as the trails venture into the wilderness of the Black Mountains. This relatively untouched area of high moorland is set between the picturesque Wye and Usk valleys and provides some of the best cross-country riding to be found anywhere in the UK!  Each day there is a new route to follow, covering between 8 and 15 miles a day, stopping for lunches at traditional Welsh inns along the way or remote picnic sites in the peaceful woodlands. You will ride up and down steep slopes, cross lofty summits, wade through rocky rivers, pass through dense woods and see the best of what the country has to offer. The handsome Welsh Cobs have fast acceleration, perfect handling and automatic survival instinct! Running on grass and water, they're more environmentally friendly than any machine! Guests are invited to take part in catching, grooming, and tacking up the horses, and are encouraged to develop a relationship with their special horse. You'll get to experience a varied range of terrain, pace and scenery, returning to the comforts of the farm each evening. After riding with your new friend all day, you will appreciate your comfortable stay each night at the lovely 17th century farmhouse nestled in the green, rolling hillside and be wowed by Maria's splendid home-cooked meals - the highlight of each evening - and guests love to relax around the cozy fire or visit the local pub for drinks and fun. You will have one evening to dine out at a local inn or restaurant during the week and this is good news as Abergavenny and the surrounding area is becoming justifiably famous for its delicious food! We can advise you on some great places to check out! We want you to leave Wales a much more confident, relaxed and knowledgeable rider and perfectly relaxed from your riding vacation, full of good food and amazing memories!

Accomodation

Accommodations
This is a stationary ride so all nights are spent at the same location.

Description
Built from stone from a quarry just upstream, this farm has probably been a home to people for nearly 400 years. The traditional character of the house has been kept while renovating the guest annex to the highest standard. There are 4 rooms in the guest annex, each with their own en-suite shower room. The rooms are basic, but clean and comfortable... some have a private washroom, some have to share. There is a dining room with open fire place where everyone meets and swaps stories of the day.
There is plenty of hot water, Welsh blankets, fluffy pillows, 100% cotton linen and goose down duvets to make sure you will sleep like a baby. The house is heated with a wood biomass boiler, so in the winter you will be cozy and warm.
A comfortable lounge provides space for guests to relax and socialize in the evening. You will be staying at a lovely farmhouse that dates back to the 17th century. The rooms are basic, but clean and comfortable... some have a private washroom, some have to share. There is a dining room with open fire place where everyone meets and swaps stories of the day.

Room Occupancy
There is no single room available at the farmhouse.


Meals
All meals are included for this trip.
When staying at the farm, both breakfast and dinner are taken in our garden room overlooking the stream at the back of the house. When staying at country inns along the trail, dinners are served in local pubs and restaurants. Lunches are eaten on the trails and is either a picnic or at a pub.

At the farm, food is simple but delicious. We prepare homemade meals using fresh locally-sourced ingredients wherever possible. Look out for our very own Black Mountain lamb, and the rest of our meat is from Bryan George, a nationally acclaimed butcher in Talgarth with an abattoir attached; this meat has never known packaging! Our fruit and vegetables are from Coronation Grocers in Talgarth, delivered each week along with the milk and yoghurts by our neighbor John. When in season, you may find raspberries, blackberries, lettuces, salad leaves, green beans or fresh herbs on your plate, picked that afternoon from our garden. We even have our own spring water on tap!

Alcoholic drinks are not included. However, you are welcome to bring along your own wine or beer to enjoy with your evening meal, and there is a Co-op store in Talgarth, which is open until 10pm and offers a good selection.

Dietary Restrictions
We can cater to most dietary restrictions with advance notice.

This trip includes and can accommodate special dietary requests.

Riding

Riding Experience

This trail is suitable for low intermediate riders and above, as we have lots of flexibility to change routes and horses during the week.  Some guests also choose to take a day or half-day off from riding, and visit one of the local towns (Hay-on-Wye is always popular for bookshop browsing!).

Riding Terrain & Pace
The terrain is varied and includes open moor-land, thick forests, picturesque country lanes and narrow mountain ridges. There is plenty of opportunity for fast canters and gallops, and even the chance to jump logs and ditches - all optional of course! Each of the 5 riding days, we ride different trails, usually between 8 and 15 miles a day (4-7 hours), stopping for lunch at village inns or remote picnic sites high up in the Black Mountains.

Horses
There is a herd of about 30 Welsh cobs and crosses, the majority of which have been bred here on the farm. Horses are selected for temperament and character. Size ranges from 14 to 16 hands. We breed and break our own replacement stock, and every year several youngsters join the riding stock. The horses are very reliable, friendly and sure-footed, guaranteed to give you an excellent ride. Compact, intelligent and strong, they are ideally suited to the hills and mountains of the area.
Guests are invited to take part in catching, grooming, and tacking up the horses, and are encouraged to develop a relationship with their horse.

Guides
Paul practically grew up on a horse, was leading rides from an early age. He guides the majority of the rides throughout the summer on his darling, Blondie. His unique knowledge of the local area, routes, ground condition and weather patterns enable him to choose the best way to go each day.
We also have a small team of other guides, all of whom have been trained up personally by Paul, and are briefed thoroughly by him each morning before they set out with their group.

Non-Riders
Non-riding partners are also welcome and can enjoy the fantastic walking or biking right from the door, and can even meet the riding group at the pub for lunch for a more sociable experience!

Itinerary

Each day from Sunday to Friday we ride different trails – usually between 8 and 15 miles a day, stopping for lunch at village inns or remote picnic sites high up in the Black Mountains.
We return to the farm each night for a well-earned dinner and a comfortable bed.

You will ride up and down steep slopes, cross lofty summits, wade through rocky rivers, pass through dense woods and see the best of wilderness Wales.

Our cobs have fast acceleration, perfect handling and automatic survival instinct! Running on grass and water, they’re more environmentally friendly than any machine!
At the end of the week, you will be a more relaxed, confident and knowledgeable rider, and hopefully be ready and keen to try one of our longer and more challenging trails next time.

Some guests also choose to take a day or half-day off from riding, and visit one of the local towns (Hay-on-Wye is always popular for bookshop browsing!) – so it really is a riding holiday centred around your relaxation and enjoyment.  Non-riding partners are also welcome, and can enjoy the fantastic walking or biking right from the door, and can meet the riding group at lunch for a more sociable experience!

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

Optional: weekend extension
Includes accommodations for 2 more nights and riding on Friday and Saturday, with departure on Sunday after breakfast.


Rates and Dates for Black Mountains Trail

Rates include:

Accommodations, all meals, 5 riding days

Packages and Options



  • SeasonYearDescriptionGBP ~US$
    A
    20207 day trip, AP£880$1145
The US Dollar Rate is Based on Exchange Rate of 1.3

Rates Note:

No single supplement if willing to share!

* prices are per person based on double/twin occupancy

Rates Note:

No single supplement if willing to share!


Transfer and Other Charges:



 DescriptionGBP~US$
2020 Transfer from Chepstow bus station in South Wales, per car (for up to 6 pax), one way
- to be paid locally
£ 75 $100
2020 Transfer from Abergavenny Railway station, per car (for up to 6 pax), one way
- to be paid locally
£ 35 $45
2020 Transfer from Heathrow, per car (for up to 6 pax), one way
- to be paid locally
£ 300 $390
2020 Single Supplement (paid in British Pound)
- to be paid locally
£ 300 $390
2020 Weekend extension after trip (+ 2 nights: depart Sunday), pp £ 360 $470
2020 Weekend extension after trip (+ 2 nights: depart Sunday), single £ 420 $545

Season Tour Dates  Min / MaxReserve
A 2020 05/25 - 05/31 7d / 6n 7 day trip, AP 2 /12 Reserve
A 2020 06/27 - 07/03 7d / 6n 7 day trip, AP 2 /12 Reserve
A 2020 07/18 - 07/24 7d / 6n 7 day trip, AP 2 /12 Reserve
A 2020 08/15 - 08/21 7d / 6n 7 day trip, AP 2 /12 Reserve
A 2020 09/12 - 09/18 7d / 6n 7 day trip, AP 2 /12 Reserve

Dates Note:

Rates do not include:

Drinks

Other Info
Meeting: Talgarth
Airport: London
Transfer: Chepstow bus station and Abergavenny Railway station

Climate:
                                        Talgarth area


Month

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Average High Temperature (°F)

45

46

51

55

61

66

70

69

64

57

50

46

Average Low Temperature (°F)

36

36

39

40

45

50

54

53

49

45

40

38

Average High Temperature (°C)

7

8

10

13

16

19

21

21

18

14

10

8

Average Low Temperature (°C)

2

2

4

5

7

10

12

12

9

7

4

3

Source: NOAA


Seasons
Wales has a moderate climate, very similar to the rest of the UK, but it can also be slightly unpredictable!
The mountainous nature of our landscape and the shape of our coast mean that the weather can differ quite dramatically within a very short distance. Weather also changes quite quickly here- it could be raining in the morning and gloriously sunny by the afternoon.

Most of our rain tends to fall in the autumn and early winter months (October – January) so be sure to bring a raincoat. Our days in winter are shorter and we tend to experience snow, which provides us with some spectacular scenery.

Although it’s not all rain and clouds in Wales - the summer months of June to August are the hottest here and a great time to take advantage of some of our beautiful outdoor sports and activities. April, May and September also offer some warm days to explore our landscape. Our long summer days also help as it often doesn’t get dark until 10pm/22:00 in midsummer thanks to our northerly latitude.

The temperature in winter months averages around 6°C with summer months climbing up to 24°C. However, conditions in the upland areas can be changeable throughout the entire year.

What To Bring:
What should we bring?
Warm comfortable and windproof clothing  is vital for mountain riding. Unless you are ‘calf-hardened’ it is wiser to bring long riding boots or half chaps. Riding gloves can be useful if it is cold.  Layers to keep warm/ stay cool depending on the weather. Jodphurs, Breeches or tight fitting jogging trousers (tights/long-johns in cold weather) are a must.  Jeans are not to be worn whilst riding.  We advise everyone to come equipped with a long coat as this will keep you dry and also our saddles too!!   Hard hats are essential and must fit properly.  Don’t forget casual wear for the evenings and house shoes/slippers for indoors!

Can we borrow hats / boots / jodphurs?
Yes, we have a good selection of equipment for riders to borrow.  However, we encourage you to bring your own equipment to guarantee a perfect fit.

What if it rains?
We ride in all weathers!  We have long waterproof coats to protect you and our saddles for you to borrow, but if you have your own then do bring them along.

RIDING HELMETS ARE MANDATORY!

…  this list is only a guideline for you

 

Hidden Trails Travel Documents and TripVoucher (contains important local tour contact info.)
Flight tickets
Passport
Visa (check with your consulate)

 

RIDING GEAR
Riding pants or Jodhpurs (used if possible!)
Riding boots (short) + Minichaps
Riding helmet  (there are some at the riding center for you to borrow. However for best fit it's advisable to bring your own)
Riding gloves
Hat (with chin strip) for sun protection
Lightweight Rain coat

 

PERSONAL CLOTHING
Jacket or sweater for cool evenings
Comfortable T-Shirts/Shirts
Jeans
Shorts
Underwear and socks
Pyjama
Bag for dirty clothes
Trekking boots/ comfortable shoes
Swimsuit
 
ADDITIONAL THINGS TO BRING
Personal Toiletries
Insect protection
Personal medications
Sore cream (for an emergency)
Sewing kit
Torch/ Flashlight
Adapter for electric appliances
Camera and extra film or batteries
Belt pack
Address book and pen (for postcards!)
Sun glasses with strap
Sun protection lotion and lip balm