This is our signature series, the ultimate Mountain Horse School experience! What could be better than spending 5 days on a farm with horses? More than just a horseback riding camp, we strive to offer a deeply personal journey in connecting with both horses and the natural world that's grounding, nourishing, and allows friendships, curiosity, joy and deep relationship to naturally flower into experience.
Monday to Wednesday we develop and further our horsemanship skills both in the saddle and on the ground, in the ring and out on the trails of the farm. On Thursday, we pack our lunches in saddlebags and have a picnic adventure ride out on one of the larger trail systems in Pemberton. Friday is obstacle course day, where each group of campers has a chance to set up their own course to ride through on the horses, a true test of the teamwork, riding skills, and relationships they've built all week.
Day 1- FRUIT LEATHER- We'll make a tray of delicious fruit leather to enjoy the next day, incorporating seasonal + local fruits
Day 2- HANDMADE PAPER- We can't resist, we love making paper so much. It engages so many senses at the same time! We'll throw in a few other explorations this year, like incorporating found elements and other papers into wilder, more abstract creations!
Day 3- ROSE LIP BALM: We'll harvest the soothing scent of Pemberton's Wild Roses to make an incredibly soothing and deeply hydrating rose and white chocolate lip balm.
Day 4- PICNIC ADVENTURE RIDE + PLANT MUSIC: Our favorite activity is back! After our picnic ride, we'll play with a device that translates the electromagnetic frequencies of plants into sound- which means we can listen to the plants make music. Does a rose bush sing the same song as a blade of grass?
Day 5- HORSE PAINTING + BAREBACK RIDES- This last day is left with some extra space in it so each camper can have a chance to paint a work of art on a horse and try riding bareback.
BEGINNER: Riders who've never been on a horse or need more experience and time to develop their confidence and steering. This stage is all about learning to relax and enjoy the experience and magic of riding, as well as learning body language cues that help us know what our horses are thinking and feeling. At this level we spend a lot of time on the ground learning to be comfortable approaching, catching, leading, grooming and tacking up our horses.
INTERMEDIATE: Riders who are comfortable at a rising trot without assistance and are able to guide their horses with quiet hands. This stage is all about putting in the miles until it becomes easy. Riders will build a foundation to be comfortable and balanced following the horse over varying terrain (including hills). At this level, riders are starting to be comfortable catching and grooming their horses with little assistance, but may need more support tacking up as it takes a lot of practice to get the little details right.
ADVANCED: An Advanced rider is stable and confident in riding simple canter transitions, and is beginning to work on jumping technique over cross-rails. This is the stage where we start to grow our awareness of how the horse is moving under us and how to shape their body so they can be more comfortable carrying us. We'll introduce bending, laterals, and impulsion as baby steps for starting to understand what it means for a horse to soften and come onto the bit. At this level, riders should be able to confidently catch and get their horses ready without assistance.
WANT TO KNOW MORE? READ OUR CAMP FAQ AND PHILOSOPHY