Horse and rider riding in the snow, Moose Mountain Ranch in Canada

Winter Wonderland in Alberta

Experience a real-life winter wonderland on an authentic ranch at the foot of the Rockies, in Canada. Embark on an beautiful winter adventure as you ride through the snow covered forests, meadows and frozen lakes of the Kananaskis region. Uncover the magic of Canada under the snow and admire the beauty of its wild landscapes. At the ranch, you will also enjoy a variety of winter sports whilst you embrace the real Canadian Culture on this incredible family-friendly ranch holiday.
Book now Print the details for this ride
Centre based holidays
8 days (4 days riding)
From £1,480
Family holidays
from 6 y.o
  • Riders going out on a snowy trail ride in Canada
    Enjoy a winter riding holiday near Calgary
  • Riders on a riding holiday in Canada in the winter
    A winter horseback holiday at its best
  • Guests on a sleigh ride on holiday on a ranch in Canada
    Enjoy a sleigh drive, one of the activities offered on this winter ranch holiday
  • Moose Mountain ranch and sleigh horses
    Enjoy the comforts of a beautiful guest ranch
  • Horses in the snow in the Rockies, western Canada
    Make sure to wrap up and bring layers!
  • Riders riding in the snow in Alberta, CANADA
    Ranch holiday in Alberta
  • Horseback holiday in Canada, at Moose Mountain ranch
    Canada ranch holiday in the winter
  • Winter ranch holiday with riding in the snow
    Heading back to the ranch after a ride in the snow
  • Rider on a ranch vacation near Calgary, Alberta
    Experience western riding in idyllic settings!

Itinerary

Highlights

- Experience the magic of a snowy, winter riding holiday in Canada
- Embark on a truly spectacular experience and discover in the saddle the breathtaking panoramas of the Rockies in the heart of winter
- Have fun and enjoy a variety of winter activities suitable for everyone
- Uncover the snow covered landscapes on the back of beautiful horses, trained to take you safely through the winter wilderness
  • Day 1 1 : EUROPE - CALGARY

    Kananaskis Ranch
    Fly from Europe to Calgary. Flights are not included but can be booked upon request - please contact us.

    Our guide will welcome you at the airport at 4:00 pm and transfer you to the ranch (approximately 1 hour drive). You will have a little time to relax before meeting the team and your fellow riders. Enjoy your first night at the ranch with a delicious welcome dinner.
  • Day 2 2 : BRAGG CREEK - 2-3 hours riding

    Kananaskis Ranch
    After a hearty breakfast, you will be introduced and paired with your horse. You will have a brief introduction to western tack and given some good tips for riding in the snow. A light lunch back at the ranch before you head out for your first white, winter wonderland experience. Discover the snow-covered Bragg creek before returning to the ranch in the afternoon. Dinner at the ranch.
  • Day 3 3 : THE ROCKIES - 2 hours riding

    Kananaskis Ranch
    After breakfast you will be introduced to the traditional Canadian skill of snow-shoeing. You will learn how to survive a cold winter with some winter survival tricks. This will come in handy for today’s lunch where you will eat outdoors over an open fire in the heart of the wilderness. This afternoon, you will set out on horseback on a spectacular ride at the foot of the Canadian Rockies. Discover the magnificent panoramas that this region has on offer, filled with inspiring scenery and wildlife. As you ride back to the ranch, uncover the natural beauty of the mountain as you ride past a superb frozen lake. Dinner at the ranch.
  • Day 4 4 : BANFF – CANMORE - Non-riding day

    Kananaskis Ranch
    Today is a non-riding day, giving you the chance to visit Banff or Canmore. As a group, you will decide what activities you would like to do for the day :
    - Downhill skiing at Sunshine (www.skibanff.com)
    - Dogsledding near Canmore (additional $100)
    - Visit the sights of Banff, including a visit to the Whyte Museum and the Banff hot springs

    After an exciting day of activities in the snow and a little break from all the riding fun, return to the ranch for a delicious dinner and evening of relaxation.

    Please note: If your stay happens to fall on a evening with a full moon, there is the possibility of enjoying a magical moon light ride on horseback, under the beautiful clear sky that is lit by the moon.
  • Day 5 5 : BRAGG CREEK - 2-3 hours riding

    Kananaskis Ranch
    Prepare yourself for a magical morning in the snow with a horse drawn sleigh ride through the forest. A memorable experience and the perfect photo opportunity in a real life winter wonderland. Enjoy some ice skating, or perhaps some cross-county skiing along the beautiful trails of Bragg Creek. Back to the ranch for lunch before you swap your sleigh and getting back in the saddle for an afternoon of riding. Discover the off beaten tracks and the spectacular scenery of Bragg creek. After an adventurous day, head back to the ranch and warm up by the fire before enjoying an evening of entertainment and at the Power Horn where there will be an open mike night!
  • Day 6 6 : KANANASKI - 3-4 hours riding

    Kananaskis Ranch
    After a heart Canadian breakfast, you will set off on horseback for your last day in winter wonderland. Uncover the hidden beauty of Kananaski country in the saddle as it glistens in the white snow. Ride along the wooded tracks, frozen lakes and rivers and be amazed by the exquisite landscapes that surround you. Witness wild animals in their natural habitat, before having a well-deserved break and a spot of lunch outdoors where you can enjoy the heat of an open camp fire. The specific route will be chosen on the day, dependant on the weather, trail conditions and group preferences. End your day back at the ranch where a lovely supper will be waiting for you.
  • Day 7 7 : RANCH - CALGARY - EUROPE

    One last hearty cowboy breakfast before saying goodbye to the team and horses. Transfer to Calgary airport at around 9:30am. Return flight to Europe must be departing after 12:30pm. Transfer to downtown Calgary possible.
  • Day 8 8 : EUROPE

    Arrival in Europe.

Dates & prices

Price details

- Flights to your destination are not included, but can be booked on request - please contact us for rates.

- Rates are per person, based on two riders sharing a twin or double room during the ride.

- Groups are composed of a minimum of 2 international riders and a maximum of 8 riders, plus guides.

- There is no supplement for solo riders at the ranch in the winter.

- Accompanied minors are welcome from 10 yo, provided they match the riding requirements.

- Rider weight limit: 100 kg/15 st/220lbs. Heavier riders may be accepted with advance notice but you must match the riding requirements and be able to mount and dismount unassisted.

- There is a supplement for riders requesting a specific menu (gluten-free, dairy-free...) at CAD 10 per person per day (around GBP 5 per person)

- Some non-riding activities may incur extra costs depending on your choice (dogsledding, ski gear rental…)

- You can book outside of the listed dates for groups of 3 or more.

- Riders flying into Canada are required to sign up for an electronic travel authorization. The ETA is a document that allows you to travel in Canada by plane and to travel freely inside the country. It is an entry requirement for visa-exempt foreign nationals travelling to or transiting through Canada by air: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/visit-canada/eta.html. This is not included and yours to organise. 
Please Note
The itinerary may be modified at anytime for security reasons, meteorological or events beyond our control such as blocked roads, rivers in flood, drought, strikes and local holidays. Equus Journeys, our local partners and their local guides will always strive to find the best solution and will alter the itinerary as needed.
The names of the hotels and accommodation are given for information only and depending on availability, they may be modified without notice and replaced by another of a similar standard.

Price includes

Staff and guides

English-speaking guides and wranglers

Logistics

1 horse/rider

Domestic transportation

Return transfers from/to Calgary airport at set times

Accommodation

Double or twin room at the lodge

Meals

Full board accommodation from dinner on D1 to breakfast on D7

Extra

Saddlebags

Price doesn't include

Meals

Alcohol is not included (payable locally by cash in CAD or credit card).

Transports

Transfers outside normal hours
International flights

Insurance

Visas and personal purchase
Cancellation and travel insurance are not included in the above listed price. Please note that insurance is mandatory. We recommend taking out an insurance policy as soon as your trip is booked to cover you in case of cancellation
  • January - February 2021

    Departure Return Price without flights Price including flights Status
    24/01/2021 31/01/2021 £1,480 Guaranteed departure Book now
    21/02/2021 28/02/2021 £1,480 Guaranteed departure Book now

Equestrian info

Horses

A team of 37 beautifully bred horses, well adapted to the winter and demanding terrain of the region. You will find that there is a horse for everyone, with a variety of breeds including Percheron and Paint crusaders, Welsh Pony, quarter horses, as well as Arabian and Canadian bred horses. The horses are working horses- robust, tough and sure footed.

Minimum riding ability

Minimum riding ability

You must be comfortable at riding in all three paces over varied terrain, whilst being able to control your horse in open, outdoor spaces.

Rider weight limit: 100 kg/15 st/220lbs. Heavier riders may be accepted with advance notice but you must match the riding requirements and be able to mount and dismount unassisted.

Pace

The main pace of the ride is walk, with opportunities for trots and canters where the terrain and meteorological conditions allows it.

Tacking ability and participation

You will be asked to tack and untack your horse. From the outset, your guide will ensure that you know how to do this with western tack and will be happy to answer any of your questions and alleviate any concerns.

Trip conditions and Requested experience

You need to be riding fit with a good condition of health in order to manage the cold temperatures of the Canadian winter (down to -20C). The terrain is uneven, and there may be times where you will have to dismount and lead your horse. The winter in the Rocky mountains is sometimes unpredictable, you must be prepared for cold conditions

Equestrian equipment

Western saddles.
Saddlebags and water bottles provided.
Helmets are mandatory. We recommend our riders to wear a helmet to the correct standard and you should bring your own to ensure a proper fit.

Travel info

Comfort

A beautiful Canadian guesthouse where you can enjoy the scenery of the foothills and experience western hospitality. The heart of the guest quarters is a large, bright communal space where guests can socialise, eat, cook, and listen to western tales whilst enjoying the view of the horses in the pasture. The guesthouse has a total of 5 bedrooms and can accommodate up to 8 riders. Please note: there is limited telephone network at the ranch. Free Wi-Fi (satellite) is available.

Meals

All meals are homemade, using fresh and local ingredients. Meals are served communally, with everyone sharing the same large table.
If you have a special diet or food allergies, please specify when booking: the menus can be adapted: vegetarian, lactose-free and gluten-free menus (supplement of $ 10 per day for a gluten-free menu)
We feature local wine and beer from chosen distributors if you would like a beverage to accompany your dinner. Any alcohol purchases can be added to your stay.

Climate

Calgary experiences long winters and short, hot summers. The climate is very influenced by the elevation of the city and the proximity of the Rocky Mountains.

Although the cold winters of Calgary can be very uncomfortable, the hot dry wind, called "Chinook", blows regularly over the city from the Pacific Ocean during the winter months.
These winds have sometimes raised the temperature by more than 15 ° C in a few hours, and can last for several days.
More than half of the winter days have a maximum temperature above 0 ° C. On occasion, the temperature in winter can even approach 20 ° C.
The temperature drops below −30 ° C five days a year on average; however, periods of extreme cold generally do not last very long.

Guide and local team

Our guide Neil first founded the ranch in 1991, where he combined adventure and nature, with his love for history and horses. He is passionate about his region, and takes pride in showing riders the beautiful country and horses. His philosophy? Respect the magnificent nature that surrounds the region and the fantastic team of horses that will take you there. During the camps, Neil and his team do their utmost best to preserve the natural environment for the future generations to come. His wife Undine is also part of the team and looks after the guesthouse and helps train the horses.

Tips

In Canada, it is customary to leave a tip - primarily in restaurants and other service-based establishments. Expect to leave around 10-15% of the bill.
At the ranch, your hosts are usually tipped around CAD 100-150 per rider.

Packing list

Head
- Helmets (mandatory)
- Sunhat for when not riding
- Sunglasses - with a cord attached so they don't fly off when riding
- Buff or bandana

Upper body
- Winter clothing suitable for -20°

Legs
- Lightweight, comfortable riding trousers or jodhpurs - we recommend riding in them at home before taking them on holiday to ensure they don't rub
- Casual trousers for the evenings, such as jeans

Hands and Feet
- Comfortable riding boots. We recommend short boots with half chaps but you may wish to take long chaps as an extra layer against inclement weather. We don't recommend taking your favourite long leather boots in case they get damaged
- Trainers or equivalent light shoes for moving around the ranch in the evenings
- Several pairs of socks
- Gloves - your hands are particularly exposed to the sun.

Evening wear
- Casual clothes for the evening

Nightwear
- Pyjamas or nightdress

Medical kit
- Any medication you regularly take
- Sunscreen and lip balm - should be high factor
- Insect repellent, preferably containing deet
- Blister plasters in case of any rubs
- Antiseptic cream, plasters, aspirin, anti-histamine, insect-bite salve etc...
- Spare prescription glasses/contact lenses
- Rehydration sachets

Other useful items
- Camera and high capacity memory card. Spare battery
- Bumbag for carrying your camera and small items whilst riding you can put them in your saddlebag
- Ear plugs (for light sleepers)

Our Recommendations
- 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 (passport, camera, sunscreen, lip balm etc)
- 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!

Miscellaneous
- We recommend taking a copy of your passport and insurance documents with you just in case.

In your hold luggage
- Any liquids, such as shampoo, moisturiser, deodorant unless they are less than 100ml and all bottles can fit in a small, clear, plastic ziplock bag.

In your hand luggage
- Any valuables, such as your camera, ipod, ipad etc.
- Travelling in your riding boots and carrying your hat and some riding clothes is highly recommended - then if your luggage goes astray you are still able to ride!

Visa & Health

Formalities

To find out if you need a visa and check formalities required, visit the official Canadian government website: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/visit-canada.html

VISA AND ENTRY FORMALITIES
To enter Canada, a valid passport is required by all Australian, British and US nationals. All other nationalities should check with the local embassy. If you are travelling with children and only one parent is present, you should carry a letter of consent from the non-travelling parent.
UK Emergency Travel Documents (ETDs) are accepted for entry, airside transit and exit from Canada. You can apply for an Electronic Travel Authorisation using an ETD.
Visa-exempt foreign nationals, such as British nationals, are now required to have an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) to fly to or transit through Canada.
Applying for an eTA is a simple online process that takes just a few minutes. To apply, you must have a valid passport or acceptable travel document, a credit card, and an email address. You need to apply for an eTA before you book your flight to Canada. Most applications are approved quickly, even within minutes. However, some applications can take several days to process so don’t wait until the last minute.
You can find more information about eTAs and travel to Canada by following the link below: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/visit-canada.html

In any case please check online the official government website for any updating or modification in the entry procedures.

TRAVELLING WITH CHILDREN
If you are travelling with children, and only one parent is present, you should carry a letter of consent from the non-travelling parent. Immigration officers have the right to question children using simple and appropriate language to establish whether there are any concerns about child abduction. A letter of consent may help to dispel potential concerns. For further information check with the Canadian High Commission or the Canada Border Services Agency.

TRAVELLING VIA THE USA
If you are planning on flying to Canada via the USA, You should complete an online pre-registration form on the Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (ESTA) website, before you travel. The US Customs and Border Patrol recommends that you do this at least 72 hours before departure. Applying for and securing an ESTA is a separate process to your Canadian eTA.

Addresses of consulates

  • Ambassade du Canada
    35, avenue Montaigne
    75008 Paris
    Tél. : 01.44.43.29.02
    Fax : 01.44.43.29.86
  • Consulat du Canada à Lyon
    21, rue Bourgelat
    69002 Lyon
    Tél. : 04.72.77.64.07
    Fax : 04.72.77.65.09
    consulatcanadalyon@wanadoo.fr
  • Canadian High Commission in the UK
    Canada House, trafalgar Sq
    Trafalgar Square,
    London
    SW1Y 5BJ
    SW1Y5BJ London
    Tél. : (020) 7258 6600
    Fax :
  • British High Commission in Canada
    80 Elgin Street
    Ottawa Ontario K1P 5K7
    K1P5K7 Ottawa Ontario
    Tél. : +1 613 237 1530
    Fax :
    ukincanada@fco.gov.uk
  • Ambassade du Canada
    Avenue de Tervuren 2
    1040 Bruxelles
    Tél. : +32 (0) 2 741 06 11
    Fax : +32 (0) 2 741 06 43
    bru@international.gc.ca
  • Ambassade de France au Canada
    42, Promenade Sussex
    Ottawa
    K1M 2C9 Ontario
    Tél. : +1 (613) 789 1795
    Fax : +1 (613) 562 3735
    politique@ambafrance-ca.org

Health

There are no health requirements to enter Canada as a short-stay tourist. Visitors intending to stay in Canada for more than six months, either as tourists, students or employees, may be required to take a medical examination. Visitors working in an occupation in which protection of public health is essential may be required to undergo a medical examination even if employment is only temporary. Check with the Canadian Consulate or High Commission for further information.

Insurance

It is a condition of your booking with Equus Journeys that you have travel insurance which covers you for the riding activities to be undertaken. Your travel insurance should cover you for medical expenses and repatriation. Your guides will require your travel insurance details before they allow you to ride and may refuse to let you ride if you cannot provide them. You should take your insurance documents with you.
Our recommendation:
Cancellation and travel insurances are not included. Please note that insurance is mandatory. We recommend to take out an insurance policy as soon as your travel is booked in case of cancellation.

Voltage

110-120 volts AC, 60Hz. American-style flat two-pin and three-pin (grounded) plugs are standard

Budget and money

Canadian Dollar (CAD; symbol C$) = 100 cents. Notes are in denominations of C$100, 50, 20, 10 and 5. Coins are in denominations of C$2 and 1, and 25, 10, 5 cents. Although the 1c coin (or penny) remains legal tender, as of 2013 it is being phased out of circulation.
Major credit cards are widely accepted. Use of debit cards is widespread, although many stores impose a C$5 to C$20 minimum per debit card purchase, and service charges may apply.
ATMs are easy to find in populated areas but are less common in remote regions such as rural parts of the Northwest Territories, Nunuvat and Labrador. Use a machine affiliated with a major bank to reduce service charges; independent machines in locations such as casinos and convenience stores may carry high charges and do not always accept international cards.

Telephone and jetlag

Mountain Daylight Time (MDT) -0600 UTC
To call Canada, the following dial code is required.

+1 to dial Canada its 001 from UK
The populous areas of Canada along the border with the USA have excellent cellular and wired telecommunications, meaning that travellers are never far from an international phone call home, a WIFI connection or an internet cafe. Turn yourself and start heading north, and it's not long until the traveller will find themselves in the vast and sparsely populated lands that make up the majority of Canada. With no phones and no cellular coverage, and probably pretty sparse on power, it provides a great opportunity to unplug and get away from it all. In the northern reaches of Canada, above the arctic circle, you may even find that satellite devices might not work without a clear view of the sky over the equator.