As we add more families and volunteers, we're setting up some session policies so we can stay organized and make sure everyone has the information they need.
What to Bring:
Protective Shoes (with a heel for riding)
Jacket/coat, hat, gloves (weather-dependent)
Sunscreen when needed
When you come to the Ranch you will want to bring water with you since the water we have for our livestock is non-potable.
During colder weather, plan to dress in layers so we can add or remove jackets and hats/gloves as needed. During the summer, wear lightweight, breathable fabrics and make sure to apply some sunscreen. As always, we will manage the weather and cancel as needed.
The decision to cancel takes into account the safety and well-being of our session kids and volunteers as well as our horses. Due to our topography and location, the conditions at the Ranch can be dramatically different than those in town. Sessions may need to be canceled or adjusted on a case-by-case/hourly basis at the discretion of our Executive Director.
We will cancel for lightning, high winds, and when road conditions are unsafe which includes our gravel driveway with steep inclines.
Lightning: If it is raining, we can typically still work in the barn under cover from the rain so long as we don't have lightning.
Cold: *Wind chills below 25
Wind: *When the wind is over 25 mph or if there is a NOAA Wind Advisory
Road Conditions: If schools are canceled or if our Executive Director has assessed that the Ranch driveway is not safe.
Our session leaders may choose to adjust sessions to groundwork, horsemanship education, or indoor horsemanship instruction in the barn in the event of poor weather conditions instead of canceling.
Please arrive on time and wait in the driveway area for your session leader to meet you. Our Ranch rule is to "Be safe and feel safe" and we cannot manage safety if we are not present. If your session leader is not in the driveway to meet you, send us a text to let us know you're here. If you are going to be late or are not going to make it, please let us know so we can make any adjustments needed to shift your session time or schedule a makeup time. Our session program often has a waiting list so we also try to fit kids on the waitlist into our schedule when we have a cancellation.
We do require that a parent or guardian remain on-site for the duration of the session, unless you have approval from the Executive Director.
Closed-toe shoes with closed heels are required for working with the horses. Proper footwear is very important when working around and riding horses. Since horses are large animals, there are specific safety points to follow and we put safety first in our horse program. As such, for kids who are riding in a saddle, we also require shoes that have a defined heel that is at least one inch in height. This ensures that our session kids' shoes will remain safely in the stirrups. We do have riding shoes in limited sizes available for kids to use in sessions. Riding helmets are required and provided.
It is best if kids can wear long pants as temperatures allow. When the heat index is in the 90's and above, staying cool is a priority so we do allow for shorts. When the weather is cold, please come prepared with a jacket or coat as well as hat and gloves/mittens as needed. Hands in particular can get very cold on windy winter days.