You will stay in small country hotels or B&Bs in rooms for 2-3 people with private bathrooms.
Your meals will consist of picnic lunches carried in your saddlebags, and in the evening, you will enjoy hearty dinners made from local produce.
The Haute-Loire's climate is affected by its proximity to the Atlantic ocean and the mountains that surround it. In general, the region is altogether dry, but it has very long winters paired with short summers.
A Mediterranean front makes itself felt in the south and southeast of the region with sometimes considerable rainfall. High in the mountain plateaus, it is usually cold and in the summer they are subject to storms. The oceanic influence also leads to brisk changes between snowfall and long mild spells brought in by the warmer maritime front. The Mediterranean influence also brings with it strong winds in the south and southeast as well as sudden rain storms and cold snaps in the mountains. However, when the southerly winds die down, especially in the summer and autumn, the region benefits from long periods of beautiful hot dry weather.
In winter, temperatures vary between 10 and -3°C.
In spring, temperatures vary between 2 and 22°C.
In summer, temperatures vary between 10 and 28°C.
In autumn, temperatures vary between 3 and 22°C.
Guide and local team
Your ride will be led by Daniel, who has been organising and leading horse riding trips for the past 20 years. Having been born in the Haute-Loire, he is extremely knowledgeable about and proud of the area you will be riding through. A trip leader with the TREC qualification and a desire to show you the best that his region of France has to offer. Daniel gets by pretty well in English and has even invested in the latest translate-as-you-speak device to provide the best tour possible!
In France it is customary to tip - usually this is by rounding up the price when you are satisfied with the service in a restaurant. You may wish to leave a tip with the guide who can split it amongst all members of the team - this is not obligatory and is entirely at your discretion.
The information provided is general and should be adapted to the season in which you are travelling, specifically concerning the necessity of Goretex waterproofs.
- A riding helmet is compulsory and we recommend that you take your own to ensure a correct fit. Helmet makers (GPA, HKM, LAS Helmets, Lamicell, Troxel, Equithème) now offer horse-riding helmets that are ventilated, strong, light and comfortable.
- Sunhat for when not riding
- Sunglasses - with a cord attached so they don't fly off when riding
- Buff or bandana for protecting your neck and face from the sun, wind or rain
- Warm hat for cold evenings/days
- Thermals in case of cold weather
- Long sleeved shirts provide protection from the sun or extra warmth
- Lightweight fleece or jumper
- Waterproof jacket (made from Goretex or equivalent) and/ or (depending on the season) a waterproof vest that covers you thighs. No ponchos!!
- 2 pairs of lightweight, comfortable riding trousers or jodhpurs - we recommend riding in them at home before taking them on holiday to ensure they don't rub
- Waterproof over trousers (made from Goretex or equivalent), especially if you don't have a long waterproof coat
- Casual clothes for the evenings (jeans or walking trousers)
- A swimming costume may be useful for impromptu dips in the lake
- Non-irritant cotton or synthetic underwear
Hands and Feet
- Comfortable riding boots. We recommend short boots with half chaps but you may wish to take long chaps. We don't recommend taking your favourite long leather boots in case they get damaged
- Lightweight shoes or trainers for the evenings
- Several pairs of warm socks
- Gloves - your hands are particularly exposed to the sun, wind or rain whilst riding
- Backpacks cannot be worn whilst riding. We recommend a small bumbag or a coat with pockets so that you can carry small items with you during the day (camera, sunscreen, lip balm etc)
- A soothing cream may be useful to treat areas irritated by long hours in the saddle
- We recommend travelling in your riding boots and carrying your hat and some riding clothes in your hand luggage - then if your luggage goes astray you are still able to ride!
Other useful items
- Water bottle (1.5 litres or 2 equivalent)
- Headtorch or small torch for moving around at night - bring spare batteries and bulbs
- Protein or cereal bars for the longer stretches of riding
- Toilet paper and a lighter to burn it after use
- Swiss army knife or equivalent (in checking-in luggage!!)
- Small plastic bags for you rubbish
- Ear plugs (may be useful)
- Camera and high capacity memory card. Spare battery
- A pair of binoculars
Make sure any allergies (to medication or otherwise) and clearly stated in your medical kit
- Any medication you regularly take
- Imodium or similar anti-diarrhea medication
- Vitamin C tablets
- Sunscreen and lip balm - should be high factor
- Insect repellent
- Eye drops
- Hydrating/ soothing cream
- Blister plasters in case of any rubs
- Antiseptic cream, plasters, aspirin, anti-histamine, insect-bite salve etc..
- 10cm wide bandage
- Spare prescription glasses/contact lenses
- Re-hydration sachets
- Antiseptic wipes
- Handwash gel
- The airline allows only one bag to be checked-in per passenger. Make sure it weighs no more than 20kg; if it exceeds this weight, you will have to pay excess luggage fees at check-in
- Hand luggage is limited to 7kg (measuring 56 cm x 45 cm x 25 cm), it mustn't contain any sharp objects (knives, scissors, nail file or nail scissors, etc.) and the quantity of liquid allowed per passenger is limited to 100ml per container.
In your hold luggage
- Any liquids, such as shampoo, moisturiser, deodorant over 100 ml and all bottles can be decanted into small, clear, plastic Ziplock bags. We recommend biodegradable washing products where possible.
- We recommend taking a copy of your passport and insurance documents with you in case you lose your originals
- In your hand luggage carry any valuables, such as your camera, ipod, ipad etc.