6 days (4 riding days, one extra long)
Advanced riders only
- Sep 06 - Sep 11 2017
Tour operatorElvar and Fjóla
Sheep round up - Staðarfjöll
Every year when the autumn comes in september we need to go riding into the highlands of Staðarfjöll to collect our sheeps. We ride with a handhorse into the mountains searching for the sheeps. There should be about 1.800 of them from Syðra-Skörðugil , our farm, total maybe 7-8.000. There they have been spending the summer racing their lambs in the freedom and the wilderness of Staðarfjöll. We need to bring them home before the cold Icelandic winter arrives. This is a great oportunity to get to know the farm live. You ride with the farmers and help in the coral to bring their sheeps home. The landscape and the beauty of the mountains is amazing and you get to know the Icelandic "viking" horse working.
Day by day
We pick you up early in Reykjavík. We head up north to our farm at Syðra-Skörðugil in Skagafjörður. The drive is about 4 hours with short stops. When in Skörðugil everybody gets settled in our lovely guesthouse Ömmubær. When all is unpacked we take a walk to the stable and saddle up for a short ride around the farm. After riding we enjoy dinner and relax in Ömmubær, get to know eachother a bit better.
Distance: 10 km (riding)
After breakfast we get ready for another short ride. We walk up to the stable an explore the farm a bit better. We saddle up two horses each. We start practising how to ride with a hand horse on bumpy roads. In the evening we enjoy a good dinner and a quality time in the hot tub at Ömmubær.
Distance: 20 km
Today there will be more riding and practising with a hand horse on bumpy roads because it is really important that you are well prepared for the big day on saturday. We will ride up to Reykjaskarð to get to know the trails we need to ride the next day in the darkness. We will use the rest of the day to get prepared for next day, get the riding equipments ready, clothes , lunch and etc. Dinner and the hot tube at Ömmubær. It is really important to go early to sleep tonight since there will be a early rise in the night.
Distance: 20 km
Rice and shine at 2 AM ! We come together in the kitchen for a good breakfast. After that we need to get ready for the day. It depends on the weather if you need to bring your rain coat or not. In september the weather in Iceland can be all kinds !! So it´s important to bring warm clothes.
When in the stable everybody find their two horses they have been assigned the day before. At 4 AM it is time to ride into the darkness towards the mountains of Staðarfjöll. This experience is amazing... how does the horse find it´s way through the darkness and not falling on these bumpy trails ? We ride up Reykjaskarð and into the mountains. The day will be mostly about finding sheeps ! When we think we have got them all they are brought together in one big stream of sheeps and pushed down the mountains into the coral of Staðarrétt. The trails and the lanscape you ride up there in the mountains is amazing and to witness the wonders of the Icelandic horse when he´s working is magnificent, so powerful and wise. When in Staðarrétt we rest the horses for a while. Some hot coffee and chokolate will be served. We saddle up again and ride home to the farm. After a long day it will be perfect to rest a while in the hot tub and then have the perfect dinner afterwards.
Today is all about joining the farmers in the coral of Staðarrétt and help with the sheeps. After a nice and welcome good night sleep at Ömmubær we meet up at breakfast at 8 AM. Have a good meal and collect the group together and drive to Staðarrétt. At 10 AM the coral will start. At our farm we have about 650 female sheeps. Every year in may they have their lambs, about 1.100 of them. So in Staðarrétt there should be about 1.500 sheeps, total is about 7-8.000 sheeps, we need to find and collect together. This will be a busy day at Staðarrétt and you will be a part of it. It will be a great oportunity for you to get to know more about the farm live. We will end this day with the perfect goodbye dinner where you will get to taste some of the farm´s specials !.
After a good night sleep at Ömmubær we meet up in the lovely kitchen for the last time and have a good breakfast together. After packing and saying goodbye to the farm and the horses we drive back to Reykjavík.
Sheep round up - Staðarfjöll
The sheep round-up was a unique and unforgettable experience for me: 5 days away from my every day life. Spending time close to nature, close to the unique Icelandic horse. I got the opportunity to really experience life in Iceland on the country side. This was made possible through Elvar and Fjóla, and I appreciated in particular the authentic way in which they integrated their guests into their everyday activities at the farm, supported by their family and friends.
The food in Iceland is great and in particular the cuisine of Fjóla is already worth a stop-over The guest house at the farm is new and well equipped. Everything was smoothly organised.
The sheep round-up has truely exceeded my expectations and I dare to say that I enjoyed one of my best holidays ever.