Pack N Ride Overview
Ranch Camp offers a horse pack trip for our horse-crazy campers who have spent at least one summer with us in the EQ Program (or who have outside riding experience) and who are entering grades 8-10. On this amazing trip, you will combine horsemanship skills with the beauty of a wilderness experience. Not only will you be able to utilize the skills you have learned in the EQ Program, but you will also be able to add many horsemanship and camping skills that are important for any equestrian!
Riders must be comfortable tacking, mounting/dismounting, working with horses on the ground and be confident at the walk, trot and lope/canter. If you are joining us from outside the EQ program, all riders must provide a reference from a instructor and/or riding video.
- 9 day professionally guided horse pack excursion in State Forest State Park
- Relax at local hot springs after your trip!
- Two experienced Ranch Camp horse staff will accompany your trip of 6-9 campers
- Learn the basics of how to pack trip with horses
- Camp each night in beautiful, remote wilderness areas
- Riding practice pre-trip at the JCC Ranch Camp
- Final Shabbat at camp to celebrate your adventure!
Below is a sample itinerary for the Pack N Ride Trip:
Day 1 – Arrive at camp! Meet your group and get oriented to camp – opening camp programming.
Day 2 – 4 – Practice rides around camp trails and in the arena. Participate in camp favorite activities and programming including options such as: archery, dance, high ropes, swimming, campfire, etc. Pack and prepare for trip, review/learn back country camping skills, etc.
Day 5 – Depart for Red Feather Outfitters and camp on property. Meet your professional guides and re-pack gear into horse packs.
Day 6 – 11 – Horse Pack Trip! Spend each day riding and each night camping under the stars. Campers and staff help to prepare meals, set up campsites and care for horses.
Day 12 – Enjoy a morning at the hot springs after your amazing trip and return to camp!
Day 13 – 14 – Final Shabbat celebration at camp! Relax with your friends, enjoy services, Shabbat dinner and final closing camp programming. Pack and get ready to say good-day to new friends.
Day 15 – Depart camp for home.
Dates and Rates
What is food like on trips?
Most of our trips don’t have a base camp in the wilderness, but are spent backpacking and camping along the trail that the group is assigned to. Meals are lightweight and easy to pack, prep and cleanup. We do our best to provide a meal that is always Kosher, but balanced and full of the nutrients and energy kids need to accomplish what the day has in store for them.
- Pancakes with peanut butter/sunbutter
- Rehydrated eggs with hash browns
- Oatmeal with brown sugar
- Canned Fruit
- Granola/protein bars
- Tortilla with peanut butter/sunbutter, granola and honey
- Cheese sandwich
- Canned chicken sandwich
- Tuna salad packs
- Granola/protein bars
- Macaroni & Cheese
- Cous Cous with lentils
- Quinoa & Butternut squash
- Rice & Bean burritos
- Rehydrated Mashed potatoes
How do I know my child is safe?
Parents receive daily communication via e-mail, letting them know that their camper’s group is A-OK. We also do a larger update letting parents know the current goings on, especially if the group has just completed a major activity.
Each trip goes out with a SPOT device, used for text message check-ins with our base at Ranch Camp. Each SPOT is equipped with an emergency button that can summon EMS via GPS locators. Additionally, each trip leader carries a SatPhone for daily communication and check ins. Each trip has an appointed time to call, daily.
Finally, and most importantly, we send out only our best for trip programs. These are staff with extensive personal experience backpacking who may be guides or teachers the rest of the year. They receive an additional week of training on top of what other staff receive. All trip leaders are trained in Wilderness First Responder as well as Medication Administration Training.
What horse experience does my child need for Pack N Ride?
Campers on Pack N Ride must come in with a beginner/intermediate level of horseback riding experiences. Riders should have the following competencies:
- Bridling Independently
- Mounting from the ground
- Walking (steering, going over obstacles, stopping, moving with the horse)
- Trotting (sitting and posting trot)
If your child has been in the EQ program previously our instructors will be able to access their experience level. If not, interested participants must provide a reference from a riding instructor and/or a video demonstrating skill level.