walkhighlands

This forum is for general discussion about walking and scrambling... If writing a report or sharing your experiences from a route, please use the other boards.

French horseriders in the Highlands

French horseriders in the Highlands


Postby Albalolita » Tue Nov 27, 2018 5:41 pm

Hello
We are 2 horseback riders (Maureen, scottish but living in France, since... ages... and I, 100% French).
We'd like to come to Scotland with our own horses for 2 weeks trip on our own. We saw that a few paths were very boggy, dangerous then for horses. We would like to ride in the center of the Highlands (Inverness, Torridon). Well, we have some difficulties to estimate the paths we could trust for this type of trip.
We had a look at the Cape Wrath Trail but we read that this track was quite dangerous and not horses suitable.
Is there anyone who could help us in preparing our trail.
Thank you for your help
Carole
Albalolita
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Oct 30, 2018

Re: French horseriders in the Highlands

Postby EmilyD » Tue Nov 27, 2018 7:16 pm

I'm a hillwalker who also rides, but as a caveat, I've never taken the horse out in the Highlands due to not owning a trailer or lorry. Anyway, you're right -- a lot of the trails are boggy, but there are plenty you could ride on. However, your biggest problem will be gates: ones that a human on foot or on a mountain bike can access, but it will be either a narrow gate, a kissing gate, or a stile, and you won't get a horse through. These are usually next to locked five-bar gates that provide the estate with vehicle access. If you had a horse, I imagine you would have to contact the estate and ask for the gate to be unlocked, but it's sometimes not easy to work out who owns what and who you have to contact.

Horse riders have the same rights, in theory, as hikers and cyclists under the Access Laws, but in practice it doesn't work out that way because while estates have to allow hikers access, they can legally prevent unauthorised vehicles from using their private tracks, so they lock the gates that something car-or quad-bike-sized could fit through, which unfortunately affects things that are horse-sized as well. Not enough people ride these trails to have thrown any kind of meaningful fit about it, so as far as the estates are concerned, they do not need to provide riders with easy access.

These people offer commercial trail rides throughout the Highlands, including (based on their website) multiday treks. You should try to contact them, as they will know how to deal with the access issues on the trails they use. http://www.highlandsunbridled.co.uk/.
EmilyD
Mountaineer
 
Posts: 26
Munros:240   Corbetts:40
Donalds:6
Joined: Sep 27, 2015

Re: French horseriders in the Highlands

Postby EmilyD » Tue Nov 27, 2018 7:27 pm

I also found BHS Scotland's site, which lists many of the major long distance trails and describes access issues that affect riders (at least at the time of writing): http://www.bhsscotland.org.uk/riding-routes1.html
EmilyD
Mountaineer
 
Posts: 26
Munros:240   Corbetts:40
Donalds:6
Joined: Sep 27, 2015

Re: French horseriders in the Highlands

Postby Sunset tripper » Tue Nov 27, 2018 7:46 pm

If you have a horse you can jump the gate or have I been watching too many movies? :D
User avatar
Sunset tripper
 
Posts: 1456
Joined: Nov 3, 2013
Location: Inverness

Re: French horseriders in the Highlands

Postby EmilyD » Wed Nov 28, 2018 1:03 pm

Definitely watching too many movies. Jumping a gate in a western saddle... Ouch. I don't think so. That guy would be singing soprano for the rest of his life (and did you notice the way the film was cut? You never actually saw the horse jump).

In reality, most gates on land rover tracks have a landing that would probably lead to the horse falling on top of you, and most riders are too chickensh ** t to jump a five-bar gate anyway.
EmilyD
Mountaineer
 
Posts: 26
Munros:240   Corbetts:40
Donalds:6
Joined: Sep 27, 2015

Re: French horseriders in the Highlands

Postby Albalolita » Thu Nov 29, 2018 9:31 am

Thank you for your advices. Yes, jumping with all our saddlebags is not that easy... :lol:
We received some interesting information from BHSS and we tried to contact these people offer commercial trail rides throughout the Highlands, but they never answered to our request which is quite understandable.
I'm gonna try to do like an inventory of all these unsuitable gates/bridges for horses with this BHSS report but at least we know that there are plenty we can ride on, thank you.
We also received one answer from BHSS : "The problem with Scotland is we don’t know what is rideable until we ride there." :D
I'll probably try to get some information on mountain bikers side as well.
Tks to all of you !
Carole :thumbup:
Albalolita
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Oct 30, 2018

Re: French horseriders in the Highlands

Postby henoctasus » Fri Dec 07, 2018 7:41 pm

Hey Carole,

I work for the Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park in Scotland and I helped create these pages - https://www.lochlomond-trossachs.org/horse-riding-routes/.

They are 10 routes in the National Park suitable for horses, complete with maps and details.

Cheers,
Vlad
henoctasus
Hill Bagger
 
Posts: 14
Munros:73   Corbetts:5
Sub 2000:2   
Joined: Jul 21, 2014

Re: French horseriders in the Highlands

Postby Coop » Fri Dec 07, 2018 8:27 pm

EmilyD wrote:Definitely watching too many movies. Jumping a gate in a western saddle... Ouch. I don't think so. That guy would be singing soprano for the rest of his life (and did you notice the way the film was cut? You never actually saw the horse jump).

In reality, most gates on land rover tracks have a landing that would probably lead to the horse falling on top of you, and most riders are too chickensh ** t to jump a five-bar gate anyway.


Never dis John Wayne.
Legend
He jumps 10 bar gates- carrying the horse on his back !!
Coop
Walker
 
Posts: 739
Munros:229   Corbetts:66
Grahams:17   Donalds:19
Sub 2000:1   
Joined: Jun 5, 2016

Re: French horseriders in the Highlands

Postby Caberfeidh » Sat Dec 08, 2018 10:40 am

You could save all that effort by simply having two half coconut shells and banging them together...

User avatar
Caberfeidh
Mountaineer
 
Posts: 6564
Joined: Feb 5, 2009

Re: French horseriders in the Highlands

Postby aniolare » Sun Dec 09, 2018 6:06 pm

Scottish Hill Tracks by ScotWays is a great source for information on paths. Not much information on gates though, but I imagine with a little creativity there should be a way around most of them.
aniolare
Mountaineer
 
Posts: 1
Munros:31   Corbetts:7
Grahams:2   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:5   Hewitts:2
Joined: Mar 19, 2016

Re: French horseriders in the Highlands

Postby jac the lassie » Mon Dec 10, 2018 2:27 pm

Another source of information would be serc (Scottish endurance riding club) they've got branches in all regions including a Highlands branch. They will have members all over with local knowledge of the tracks that are equine friendly. A lot of there members do long distance routes across the Highlands too. If it can be ridden on a horse I guarantee they'll know how. They've got a website and are on Facebook.
User avatar
jac the lassie
Wanderer
 
Posts: 192
Munros:73   Corbetts:2
Grahams:4   Donalds:13
Sub 2000:24   
Joined: Jun 25, 2014
Location: outskirts of edinburgh

Re: French horseriders in the Highlands

Postby Albalolita » Thu Jan 17, 2019 4:58 pm

Thank you all for your advices !
very interesting !
Albalolita
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Oct 30, 2018




Walkhighlands community forum is now advert free

We need help to keep the site online.
Can you help support Walkhighlands and the online community by setting up a monthly donation by direct debit?



Return to General discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests