DAY RIDES IN DEESIDE
6 hours of riding - Available March to October
Our day rides aim to showcase the beauty and history of this stunning area we are lucky to call home! From epic canters through the forest, challenging hill climbs and river crossings to panoramic views and incredible scenery - we have something for every rider. Please note: due to the nature of the terrain we ride in as well as the length and pace of our day rides, we do NOT offer these rides to beginner or novice riders. You must be comfortable in walk, trot and a gentle canter in order to participate. This is for the safety of our horses and guests. We reserve the right to change the route of your ride on the day due to weather, trail closures or rider competency.
For riders who want stunning views but also enjoy the peace and tranquility of riding through a variety of magical forestry!
Our ride starts at our premises which is set in the heart of Royal Deeside, nestled in a secluded and idyllic location amongst the trees. We head off into the forest where there are some great opportunities for canters on the grassy tracks between the trees and heather. Keep an eye out for red deer prancing through the heather and Capercaille (the Gaelic name for this species, capall-coille, means ‘horse of the forest’) - extremely rare and iconic big game birds of the grouse family with stunning feathers. We catch a glimpse of Ballogie house and the Dee before we continue our climb uphill through the forest.
The forestry gradually opens up as we climb and we begin to catch glimpses of the glen below as we wind our way through heather and Scot's pine. Suddenly we find ourselves on the open hillside, the slope of Carnferg looming in front of us. Panoramic views surround us as we climb towards the pyramid monument at the top. Aboyne, Loch Kinord, Balmoral Estate, Lochnagar, Glen Dye and Glen Tanar are all visible from the top.
After soaking up a view that will take your breath away, we begin our descent through the heather to the Fungle road which is an ancient right of way that connects Aboyne to the Angus glens. It was one of the most important mounth roads in the area and was frequented by cattle drovers and whisky smugglers alike. We follow this historic route all the way to the outskirts of Aboyne, passing through winding burns and exploring a wide range of forestry. We pass the secluded Birsemore loch, also known as the Queens loch before joining the forestry trail that will take us home.
£160 per person (lunch not included)
CARNFERG & THE FUNGLE
5.5hrs riding, 45 min lunch break
CARNFERG, FUNGLE AND FOREST OF BIRSE
6hrs riding, 45min lunch break
This day ride is for those who want to experience adventure, excitement and feel the true remote and wild nature of the Cairngorms. Our ride starts at our premises which is set in the heart of Royal Deeside, nestled in a secluded and idyllic location amongst the trees. We begin in the forest and there are some fantastic opportunities for breath-taking canters on the grassy tracks through the trees. We gradually climb higher and higher before the trees give way to stunning views over Glencat and beyond. The rolling green hills and lush greenery that we began our ride with quickly give way to rough but beautiful heathery slopes as we climb higher and higher to reach the summit of Carnferg (525m). Here we reach the memorial cairn at the summit which is over 100 years old and take in the panoramic view that surrounds us. Red kites and eagles soar overhead and on a clear day, you can see Morven, Mount Keen, Mount Battock and beyond into the heart of the Cairngorms. As we descend the hill, we pick up the Fungle road which is an ancient right of way that connects Aboyne to the Angus glens. It was one of the most important mounth roads in the area and was frequented by cattle drovers and whisky smugglers alike. After a few miles, we leave this track and turn towards home, passing the stunning Birse Castle on the way. Built in the 1600's, the castle was burnt and ruined only 40 years after it was built. It was restored in 1905 and is now a stunning feature in the landscape. We are on the home stretch as we ride on a small track that winds through the Calendonian forest.
£160 per person (lunch not included)
Things to Note:
Our weight limit for day rides is 15 stone. Day treks are not suitable for the first time rider, as we ride over rough, remote terrain. We require riders to be competent in walk, trot and canter. We provide saddle bags, you just need to bring a water bottle, your lunch, snacks and a waterproof/warm layer.
Our ride-outs are always accompanied by at least one ride leader and there will never be more than 8 guests on a ride unless specifically requested for example a large family group or group of friends.
Riding hats up to current British safety standards are provided free of charge. Please wear sensible footwear! Our stirrups are fitted with toe covers as a safety measure to stop your foot from slipping through, however open-toed sandles and shoes with a heel over 2 inches are not allowed. For rainy days you should bring a waterproof jacket - we can provide waterproof over trousers if needed. Sections of the trail on the hill are exposed and we strongly recommend all riders bring at least on extra mid layer as well as a waterproof layer as here in Scotland, you can have 4 seasons in one day.