Experience Details

Garrawilla is a historic family owned and operated cattle station located east of Coonabarabran in New South Wales.Once you drive through the gates of Garrawilla you will be reminded of one of these scenic cattle ranches out West, comprised of cowboys, ranchers – and of course black cattle dotted on the hills. You have arrived in true Australian cattle country with more over 7000 acres of just waiting for you to be explored on horseback.

Once you settle in, life here at ‘Old Garrawilla’ becomes simple. It just centers around good rides, moving cattle, learning from Australia’s great horse(wo)men, home-style cooked meals and discussions around the campfire or the fireplace where lifelong friendships are formed.

As with all of Horses & Cattle Australia experiences, this is the real deal and to get the most out of the experience as a guest, you will be supported and guided by experienced horse professionals, stockmen who specialize in campdrafting, horsemanship, reining and ranch riding. If you are an experienced rider this will be an experience of a lifetime for you as a rider but it will also give you and your horse more exposure working out in the open range and learning to work together as a team.

For non-riders – or just in case you want to take a break from riding for a couple hours – there is plenty to do at the station and in the area. Coonabarabran is the stargazing capital of Australia and the small country town is on the edge of the iconic Warrumbungle National Park where the jagged volcanic silhouette of the Warrumbungles rises sharply from eucalypt-dotted ridges amid surrounding plains and when you climb up some of the hills on the back of your horse or in a 4WD the volcanic landscapes make for a picturesque backdrop.

Apart from riding, guests at the farm can try their hand at a range of pursuits from fossicking, bushwalking, yabby fishing to exploring the properties seemingly endless hills which provide ample opportunity for bushwalking and wildlife spotting. The way the station is set-up, it’s also easy to jump into the 4WD and join up with the rider’s group along the way. And then there is the spring-fed lake at your doorstep inviting you to go for a swim and cool off on a hot summer day. However, please be warned that you might just want to sit in the garden on the veranda with a glass of chilled wine and enjoy the serenity and beauty of this wonderful place.

At a glance

LOCATION:

Between Coonabarabran and Gunnedah, NSW

AIRPORT:

Tamworth

TYPE OF EXPERIENCE:

Cattle Station Experience

SEASON:

September until December and February until May

DURATION:

3 Full Riding Days / 4 Nights and 4 Full Riding Days 5 Nights

PRICING:

From AUD 2300 per person all inclusive

LEVEL:

Intermediate and Advanced Riders

ACCOMMODATION STYLE:

Country style accommodation in the original Garrawilla homestead

FOOD AND DRINK:

All Meals and Beverages

ADDITIONAL NOTES:

BYOH - Bring your own horse is available for advanced riders

What to expect

Day 1 Arrival

Arrive mid-afternoon and get yourself settled in one of the spacious rooms at the homestead. Set up your horse yard or let your horse become acquainted with the new surroundings in one of the paddocks. It’s then time to join your group of fellow riders and guides for drinks and learn more about the program of the days ahead. Since we only work with eight riders at a time, we will have a keen interest in learning more about your expectations for the week and the guides will do everything possible to meet them.

Following dinner, enjoy a bit of stargazing or call it an early night to be ready for the next day’s adventures.

 Day 2

Start the day with a hearty breakfast before it’s time to saddle-up and get on your horse. The first morning will be filled with working with the guide and some activities in the paddocks close by and we will then head out for a ride. Lunch will be ready upon your return and in the afternoon, there will be another ride where you will have the opportunity to meet some cattle on the way. Get back to the station and once the horses are settled there are some nibbles and drinks waiting for you, followed by dinner.

Day 3 – 4 or 5

Regardless if you are booked on a four or five days’ experience, the program on each day is driven by the participants expectations, the guide’s specialty and most importantly by what’s on the station’s agenda.

Depending on the type of experience you book, there are either three or four full action-packed days for you to enjoy and we do spend about 4 – 6 hours in the saddle each day giving you a chance to explore the most beautiful spots on Garrawilla on horseback. Usually, we head out twice per day and on the last day we may pack our lunches into a saddle bag and head out for an all-day adventure.

In line with the lead trainer’s specialty some experiences will focus more on cattle mustering, ranch riding or learning how the sport of campdrafting originated out on the open range helping you and your horse (if you bring your own) to improve your skills and developing that special bond and relationship with your horse. However, regardless of the discipline the main objective will be to give you the opportunity to ride and apply skills in a real live cattle station working environment – the place where your chosen discipline originated from.

Since this is an authentic working cattle station, it’s the animals and nature who dictate the schedule and what you will be doing when you join the station activities varies from day to day depending what’s on the stations’ agenda and the time of the year. However, a typical day would be an early rise and after a hearty country breakfast, you will saddle up and ride out to the area where a job like mustering and moving cattle, checking fences or checking water troughs and dams needs to be done that day. During certain times of the year you might also become involved in some yardwork like branding, earmarking, vaccinating, etc.

Back at the station, once the horses are fed and settled in their yards, there might be time to go for a swim in the spring-fed lake or you just go and have a shower to wash off the sweat and dust after a day in the saddle before you enjoy some nibbles and a cold beer  or a glass of sparkling on the veranda. This will then be followed by a home-cooked dinner

– to be enjoyed with a couple of glasses of that great Australian Shiraz. In the evening, after dinner, we usually sit around the campfire and have a bit of a yarn and so many laughs for sure.

Day 5 or 6

Take in the view from the breakfast table and if you rode one of our horses it’s time to say goodbye to your horse. And yes, if you want to make this equine companion your own, we sometimes do have horses available which are for sale and you might want to take back home with you! But then it’s time to say goodbye and take with you what’s for you alone to keep which are all of these great memories and learnings to be cherished forever!

The Horses

All of our experiences at Garrawilla are best to enjoy with your own horse. However, we realize there might be times where some guests might not be in a position to enjoy such an adventure with their own horse. For these occasions we do have a small number of selected horses, owned by our guides and trainers and we make them available for our guests to ride. These are well trained horses, some Australian stockhorses and quarter horses, all of them well-bred, trained. If you are after a more leisurely ride or just want to trail behind a mob of cattle for hours or ride through the hills and valleys, you will love our well-trained, responsive pleasure horses which are ready to bond with you and take you on an experience of a lifetime.

Your Guides

Barry Moore

Barry has been a serious and successful competitor at campdrafts and shows over the years. However, some of his greatest memories are of his children competing on the horses he has bred and the great horse people he has met being part of the Australian Stock Horse Society.

Brooke French

Join a great Australian horsewoman, campdrafter and farmer for a very special farm and horse riding experience where she shares her passion and love for the land, for the horses and for this beautiful part of the country she calls her own.

Details

Included:

  • A great horse incl tack and all equipment
  • Overnight yard for your horse for riders who BYOH (Bring your own horse)
  • Support from experienced stockmen and trainers during the ride
  • Country style accommodation in the beautiful ‘Old Garrawilla’ homestead in spacious double or twin rooms with shared bathrooms. Double and twin rooms are available for single use for participants who don’t want to share (single occupancy surcharge applies)
  • Dinner on the first night of your arrival, three meals per day, smoko, beverages and breakfast on the day of your departure
  • Beer and wine with dinner

Transfer:

With your own car or by rental car from at your own expense from Tamworth (90 mins), Sydney (5 hours)

Not included:

  • Domestic or international flights from and to the destination
  • Transfer from and to Garrawilla Station
  • Single room surcharge for people who do not want to share a room

Prices and Dates

Experienced and advanced riders can join this event with their own horse on selected dates. For the Long Riding Weekend (3 Days / 4 Nights), pay AUD 2200/2400 all-inclusive if you BYOH (Bring Your Own Horse). The price of AUD 2200/2400 includes an overnight yard (tape fencing or cattle yard) for your horse. You will need to bring your own gear, feed and hay. For the Cattle Station Riding Week (4 Days / 5 Nights) pay AUD 2400/2500 if you BYOH.

Dates from Dates to Price Status
25th November 2022 30th November 2022 AUD 2400 BYOH / AUD 2900 for 4 Days/5 Nights all inclusive Fully Booked / Get on Waiting List
30th November 2022 4th December 2022 AUD 2200 BYOH / AUD 2500 for 3 Days/4 Nights all inclusive 3 Saddles Available
24th March 2023 28th March 2023 AUD 2300 BYOH / AUD 2600 for 3.5 Days/4 Nights Fully Booked
28th March 2023 2nd April 2023 AUD 2500 BYOH / AUD 2950 for 4.5 Days/5 Nights all inclusive Fully Booked
26th May 2023 30th May 2023 AUD 2300 BYOH / AUD 2600 for 3.5 Days/4 Nights Fully Booked
30th May 2023 4th June 2023 AUD 2500 BYOH / AUD 2950 for 4.5 Days/5 Nights all inclusive Fully Booked
22nd September 2023 26th September 2023 AUD 2300 BYOH / AUD 2600 for 3.5 Days/4 Nights 8 Saddles Available
26th September 2023 1st October 2023 AUD 2500 BYOH / AUD 2950 for 4.5 Days/5 Nights all inclusive 8 Saddles Available
1st November 2023 5th November 2023 AUD 2300 BYOH / AUD 2600 for 3.5 Days/4 Nights 8 Saddles Available
5th November 10th November 2023 AUD 2500 BYOH / AUD 2950 for 4.5 Days/5 Nights all inclusive 8 Saddles Available

Get in touch

call us

+61 (0) 418 613 930

email us

info@horsesandcattle.com

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