Horse round up - Skrapatungurett
- Duration: 4 Days (approx.)
- Location: Hafnarfjordur
- Product code: IH-25
Imagine hundreds of free and spirited horses cantering down from their highland summer pastures to be reclaimed by their owners. Mares and their foals, young horses and geldings traverse the rough terrain, not yet quite willing to surrender their freedom before the onset of winter.
ROUNDING UP HORSES IS AN EXPERIENCE YOU WILL NOT FORGET
Imagine hundreds of free and spirited horses cantering down from their highland summer pastures to be reclaimed by their owners. Mares and their foals, young horses and geldings traverse the rough terrain, not yet quite willing to surrender their freedom before the onset of winter.The ancient tradition of rounding up horses is only kept alive in the North of Iceland.
From the Vatnsdalur area we ride through beautiful valleys and mountains to Laxárdalur valley. Here we team up with the Icelanders and help round up the horses and drive them down from the mountains to Skrapatungurétt communal corral.
When this task is complete the locals celebrate with a special round-up dance or “réttardansleikur”. We are of course more than welcome to join in the fun. The round-up continues the next day when the horses get sorted at the corral and we help in returning some of them to their home meadows.
When you participate in the Round Ups you are experiencing the Real Thing! You will be one of the group to herd and sort the animals. Of course that means long hours outside in sometimes cold weather. Iceland in autumn has many colours and types of weather. Anticipate to be in golden sunshine one moment and to ride in rain and even sleet during the next.
We therefore recommend to dress well during these tours, to bring long woolen underwear and lots of woolen socks and gloves. It is also good to bring some „quick energy supplier“ like chocolate. A warm rider is a happy rider!
Thursday: Reykjavík – Hvammur – Vatnsdalur – Stóra-Giljá
Pick up between 07:30 – 08:30 in the morning. Please be ready at the earliest pick up time and be ready in your riding clothes. Transfer by bus to Hvammur Farm, where we meet horses and guides. On our way to the north we visit a factory outlet for woollen goods. We start our ride in Vatnsdalur valley. This beautiful valley is the setting of the Vatnsdæla-Saga. We ride on the eastern side of Vatnsdalur valley, past Hvammsfoss waterfall, surrounded by impressive basalt columns. The horses rest close to Stóra – Giljá Farm and we return to Hvammur Farm, home of our hosts Sonja and Haukur, for our overnight stay. (Approx. 20 km)
Friday: Stóra-Giljá – Björnsólfsstaðir – Hvammur
After rejoing our horses we start our ride along the shore of Lake Húnavatn, follow the expensive salmon fishing river Laxá á Ásum and continue to Blönduós village. Here we cross the glacier fed river Blanda on a bridge and continue to Björnsólfsstaðir Farm in Langadalur valley. This farm belongs to Haukur’s grandfather who is known for his storytelling and warm personality. Overnight stay at Hvammur Farm. (Approx. 30 km)
Saturday: Gathering horses in Laxárdalur – Skrapatungurétt
We meet up with our horses again at Farm Strjúgsstaðir. Today we meet the farmers coming down from the mountains where they already spent some time gathering the horses in their summer pastures. Hundreds of horses are coming down from the highlands and we participate in herding them to the round up place Skrapatungurétt. Join in the singing of the farmers, celebrating this great event of the fall during this long riding day. (Approx. 45 km)
Optional (not included in the tour price):
“Stóðréttardansleikur” dance at Blönduós, where everybody relaxes after the excitement of the day and celebrates yet another successful round up.
Sunday: Sorting of the horses and driving the herds to their home pastures
Our day starts at the round up place Skrapatungurétt where horses are sorted out. Experience the excitement and view beautiful horses while joining in this great event. When the horses are sorted we participate in returning some of them to their meadows at their home farms. Dinner at Hvammur Farm and time to share our personal experience on this riding adventure with our fellow riders. (Approx. 25 km)
Monday: Return to the South – Reykjavík
Departure from the North and return to your accommodation in Reykjavík. Approx. arrival at 13:00.
– We reserve the right to alter the itinerary if necessary –
Beds with bed linen in 2 – 4 bed units at the farm. Accommodation before and after the tour is to be arranged individually
WHAT IS INCLUDED
Bus transfer from Reykjavík to the farm.
During the ride full board is provided. Our menu consists of a large breakfast and traditional Icelandic meals (fish or lamb). Vegetarian meals are available if requested when booking. All riders make their own packed lunch from the breakfast table.
Alcoholic beverages are not included in the tour price and are hard to get in the highlands. They can be bought at a reasonable price in the Duty Free Store at Keflavik Airport upon arrival.
Rain wear, water bottle, saddle bag, riding helmet.
Individual travel insurance is not included in the tour price. We encourage clients to obtain relevant travel insurance before visiting Iceland.
Flight to and from Iceland is not included
- For more information please visit our website www.islanshestar.is -