Summer Riding School

 The local horse-club “Ljúfur” offers riding courses for children every summer, operating a riding school at our stable in the evening. For the past three weeks, children as young as 5 years from Hveragerði and the area Ölfus have been learning the basics of riding on our gentle horses. The riding instructor Hugrún Jóhannsdóttir, who is a well known teacher both in Iceland and abroad,  always has plenty of ideas for games on horseback,  and it is a joy to watch the children having fun and learning with our horses.

 

The summer season begins!

Some days ago participants on our last winter riding tour “Riding Tours and Riding Course” enjoyed a morning ride in sunny spring weather before returning to Denmark, and tomorrow we will welcome our first guests in this year’s summer season!

They will be riding for 3 days in the fascinating landscape of the volcano Hengill on the tour “Around the Volcano”, enjoying nature that  just awakens in green valleys with views of black lava and still snow-covered mountains. Already next week another “Around the Volcano” tour will start, followed by the first tour into the beautiful valley Thórsmörk starting on May 28th. The first “Best of Eldhestar” tour will also start in May, covering some of the most popular areas in the Southwest.

We are very busy preparing for the summer, training our horses to get them into shape for the long tours and making sure all the equipment will be ready. It is always an exciting time in May when we welcome about 200 horses back from their long winter vacation and also get to know some new ones. Of course we are also welcoming our summer staff members, many of them returning back and already well known.

We are looking forward to the warmer days, bright summer nights and all the time spent with our guests and the horses in the outdoors!

Open Day at Eldhestar

On April 5th, we welcomed many guests on the Open Day at Eldhestar which was part of the event “Secrets of the South”. The program included special offers for riding tours and accommodation, a horse show and free riding for children, which was very popular.

Of course visitors are always welcome to have a look around, pet our horses and enjoy a cup of coffee or hot chocolate and home baked cake while watching what’s going on in our riding hall.

Staff Competition

Last Friday, March 28th, the first „Eldhestar Local“ tölt competition took place in our new riding hall. The idea to this event came up after wintertraining had started in January and we thought it would be fun to train together for a tournament and also get some valuable feedback from judges about our performance.

Eldhestar‘s stable crew participated mostly with horses owned by Eldhestar and the office crew got the chance to train their own horses at our excellent facilities for a few days before the competition.

Every participant had to ride individually, showing slow tölt, then changing direction and showing speed changes and fast tölt. In the finals, this programm had to be shown in both directions.

We enjoyed this event so much that we are already planning Eldhestar Local 2.

We congratulate the winner Marlene Thies with Suðri frá Reykavík!

 

The results were the following:

A-final

1.Marlene Thies (Germany), Suðri frá Reykjavik

F: Suðri frá Holtsmúla 1, Owner: Eldhestar

 

2.Anna Kronhed (Sweden), Klettur frá Horni I

F: Hamur frá Þóroddsstöðum, Owner: Eldhestar

 

3. Marianne Giesswein (Austria), Kristall frá Sauðanesi

F: Nökkvi frá Hafnarnesi, Owner: Marianne Giesswein

 

4. Mirjam Wolfschlag (Germany), Skörungur frá Kanastöðum

F: Garpur frá Auðsholtshjáleigu, Owner: Eldhestar

 

5. Lena Marie Bastian (Germany), Birna frá Ásbrú

F: Ás frá Ármóti, Owner: Eldhestar

 

6. Hlöðver Ólafsson (Iceland), Laufa frá Minni-Borg

F: Samúel frá Þjótanda, Owner: Hlöðver Ólafsson

 

B-final

7. (shared) Caroline Aldén (Sweden), Stjarni frá Fljótshólum

F: Ás frá Breiðholti í Flóa, Owner: Eldhestar

 

7. (shared) Jennifer Hemp (Germany), Aría frá Efri-Gegnishólum

F: Týr frá Bræðratungu, Owner: Jennifer Hemp

 

9. Lydia Essl (Germany), Breki frá Brúnum

F: Ægir frá Móbergi, Owner: Eldhestar

 

10. Jóhanna Bettý Dushuus (Iceland), Píla frá Runnum

F: Geisli frá Sælukoti, Owner: Jóhanna Bettý Dushuus

 

11. Lina Jakobsson (Sweden), Kyndill frá Litla Garði

F: Númi frá Þóroddsstöum, Owner: Eldhestar

 

12. Fríða Rut Stefánsdóttir (Iceland), Oðinn frá Þorlákshöfn

F: Þristur frá Þorlákshöfn, Owner: Fríða Rut Stefánsdóttir

 

 

 

New Riding Trail

Just before winter arrived again with heavy snowfall and storm (which of course did not keep our guests from riding), our „Handyman“  together with some neighbours finished hard work, and we are extremely happy about the result! So we proudly introduce a brandnew, excellent riding trail through the lava field close to our farm. Many of our guests know the narrow path and have admired our surefooted horses for finding their way safely through the about 10000 years old lava. This improvement means that we can ride tölt almost all the way on our popular Heritage tour :).

New Riding Tours!

Eldhestar’s location in one of the best riding areas in the country makes it easy to improve our tours and add new ones.

The beautiful scenery of the south-western countryside offers a surprising variety in nature, which we would like our guests to experience  on our half-day tours and day tours.

As we noticed that many guests enjoy to relax in our comfortable, Eco-labeled Hotel Eldhestar after riding and enjoy good food we now offer more tours including local specialties and refreshments.

Please take a look at our new tours “Icelandic Diversity” (2h), “Horses & Hot Springs” (3c) and “Riding & Relaxation” (5c)!

 

 

Wintertraining

January is the month when horsemanship in Iceland comes to life.

It has been a long tradition in Iceland that most riding horses get a long vacation in autumn.  These regular periods of total freedom with the herd on large fields are considered to be important to maintain the horse‘s  physical and mental health, and contribute  to the special, independent character of the Icelandic horse.

It is always nice to welcome horses back to the stable that have been outside  and start with the winter training. Some of our horses that we released into the autumn fields in September just returned  and we are looking forward to working with them. We bought many new horses before last year‘s season that we will get to know better until our guests will experience next summer‘s tours on their back. We would like to take the opportunity to introduce them to you on our facebook page within the coming months.

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We wish you all merry Christmas and a happy 2014!

Horseshoeing days at Eldhestar

On November 8th and 9th the annual Icelandic horseshoeing days took place at our farm for the second time. Our stable and riding hall where well prepared for farriers from all over the country.

The program included a workshop with teaching demonstration about hot shoeing,

form changing on horse shoes and effect on movement, followed by education about the importance of good hoof care. Like last year, the instructor was the renowned farrier from Denmark, Jesper Eriksson Eurenius who won the Swedish- and Scandinavian championship in horseshoeing several times.

On Saturday afternoon the event was open to the public with exhibitions, product demonstrations and finally the Icelandic shoeing competition with reward ceremony.

We are very happy to announce that our main farrier Geert has won the 2nd place in the shoeing competition – meaning that he is the 2nd best farrier in Iceland!

Congratulations & til hamingju, Geert!

 

Autumn at Eldhestar

It is hard to believe we already have mid October! After a first glimpse of snow it feels almost like summer is back. Today is another beautiful, warm day with a palette of soft autumn colors laying upon the mountains and meadows surrounding our farm.

Autumn can be a very nice season for riding in Iceland and our guests enjoy many sunny days with warm daytime temperatures and crystal clear air. We can often observe the stunning Northern Lights in the evening skies above our farm and are looking forward to welcome the participants in our winter tours. It is getting cosy in our Hotel and the horses quickly change to being quite cuddly in their winter coat.
Sun rise is now at 8:15 and every day gets about 6 minutes less daylight, so it will soon be dark when we pick up the herd from the field.

We now have about 70 horses at the farm and just started training the young ones, which is always a very exciting time. Our tour horses on the farm are trained regularly by our staff during the winter months and most of the other ones keep on enjoying life on large fields until next summer. In the office we are busy preparing for next season, already receiving lots of bookings for our long tours.