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OZARK, ILLINOIS

Introduction to Horses and Riding

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Road Scholar
Program #4835RJ
6 Days | 5 Nights
ACTIVITY LEVEL: Moderately Challenging
Love to learn in a small-group setting? This collection of programs has at most 10-24 participants.
See our Small Group programs.
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. There’s minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding — and rewarding — programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.
Equipment Requirements
Hard soled, closed toe shoe with a heel. Prefer not "new" boots. Rain gear (not poncho). Long jeans, clothes will get dusty/muddy. Water bottle/canteen.

Itinerary for Sep 14 — Sep 19, 2014

Expand all
Type: Lodge

Description: Rustic Dormitory style loding nestled in the heart of the Shawnee National Forest. Warm and accommodating dining area where meals are served family-style. Telephone and wireless internet connection available.

Contact info:
3760 Ondessonk Road
Ozark, IL 62972 USA
phone: 618-695-2489
web: www.ondessonk.com

Facility amenities: Walking trails, large deck for relaxing.

Smoking policy: Yes
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Bathroom: Private bath in each double occupancy room.

Additional nights before: $50.00 per night per room.
Please call to ensure availability.

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day One: Sunday, September 14 - Arrival and Check-In / Welcome and Orientation
Afternoon: Welcome to Camp Ondessonk! Your guides for the week will be available at the St. Noel Center to assist you with check in and show you to your room. After moving in, take some time to relax in the fresh air on our spacious deck overlooking Ondessonk's sprawling pasture lands. Enjoy the stunning sight of our 82-horse herd as they graze away the evening hours. Or -feel free to walk around and get a preview of the adventure to come!

Dinner: A hearty dinner will be served family-style in the St. Noel Center's dining area. Bring your appetite!

Evening: An opportunity to start getting to know the individuals you will be riding with this week. Be prepared to laugh and to share a little bit about yourself as we begin forming our trail crew!

Lodging: St. Noel Center at Camp Ondessonk

Meals Included: Dinner
Type: Lodge

Description: Rustic Dormitory style loding nestled in the heart of the Shawnee National Forest. Warm and accommodating dining area where meals are served family-style. Telephone and wireless internet connection available.

Contact info:
3760 Ondessonk Road
Ozark, IL 62972 USA
phone: 618-695-2489
web: www.ondessonk.com

Facility amenities: Walking trails, large deck for relaxing.

Smoking policy: Yes
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Bathroom: Private bath in each double occupancy room.

Additional nights before: $50.00 per night per room.
Please call to ensure availability.

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Two: Monday, September 15 - Class session at the Ondessonk Stables / An after...
Class session at the Ondessonk Stables / An afternoon at the Stables / Evening Program: Illinois Biodiversity

Breakfast: Breakfast will be served family-style in the St. Noel retreat center's dining area. A warm start to a great day!

Morning: The morning will begin with feeding our large horse herd. We will welcome you to the barn with a tour, followed by our first learning lesson covering horse behavior, handling, and safety. After demonstrations, you will have the opportunity to meet your horse for the week and try out your newly learned grooming and saddling skills with help from the staff.

Lunch: Lunch will be served family-style in the St. Noel dining area

Afternoon: In the afternoon we will head back to the stables for a riding demonstration and verbal riding instruction. You will then have your first mounted lesson in the arena, where we will begin with the basics.

Dinner: Dinner will be served family-style in the St. Noel dining area.

Evening: Southern Illinois is unique on several different levels. From inland seas to that vast glaciation of ice ages past, several prehistoric occurrences impacted and shaped the geology of this area. Learn how this geology, and the convergence of several different natural divisions, allows for the astonishing plant and animal combinations found in this area. Cacti growing within a hundred feet of a moist oak-hickory forest? Southern cypress swamps in Illinois? Join us after dinner to find out more!

Lodging: St. Noel Center at Camp Ondessonk

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Lodge

Description: Rustic Dormitory style loding nestled in the heart of the Shawnee National Forest. Warm and accommodating dining area where meals are served family-style. Telephone and wireless internet connection available.

Contact info:
3760 Ondessonk Road
Ozark, IL 62972 USA
phone: 618-695-2489
web: www.ondessonk.com

Facility amenities: Walking trails, large deck for relaxing.

Smoking policy: Yes
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Bathroom: Private bath in each double occupancy room.

Additional nights before: $50.00 per night per room.
Please call to ensure availability.

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Three: Tuesday, September 16 - Morning and Afternoon Sessions at the Ondessonk S...
Morning and Afternoon Sessions at the Ondessonk Stables / Dinner Served Family Style / Evening Program: Night Hike!

Breakfast: Breakfast served family-style in the St. Noel dining area

Morning: Help feed the herd if you choose to, then we will have a learning lesson covering the history of the horse and horse breeds. We will then groom and saddles the horses. If time allows, we will head to the arena for another lesson with the basics.

Lunch: Lunch will be served family-style in the St. Noel dining area.

Afternoon: Back at the stables, we will mount our horses, review the basics, and hit the trail! Our trail ride will head through the pastures and woodlands of Camp Ondessonk, giving you a chance to really bond with your horse during the ride.

Dinner: Enjoy another delicious meal prepared fresh by our talented food-service director and served family style in the St. Noel Center Dining Area.

Evening: Enjoy a night of fun and relaxation! You will have a fire, cards and music at the ready. If you are feeling adventurous, travel outside into the nocturnal world for a night hike. Listen for the distant calls of coyotes echoing up the canyon system and see the stars like never before. If you choose, a night hike through the oak-hickory forest of Southern Illinois is an experience not to forget!

Lodging: St. Noel Center at Camp Ondessonk

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Lodge

Description: Rustic Dormitory style loding nestled in the heart of the Shawnee National Forest. Warm and accommodating dining area where meals are served family-style. Telephone and wireless internet connection available.

Contact info:
3760 Ondessonk Road
Ozark, IL 62972 USA
phone: 618-695-2489
web: www.ondessonk.com

Facility amenities: Walking trails, large deck for relaxing.

Smoking policy: Yes
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Bathroom: Private bath in each double occupancy room.

Additional nights before: $50.00 per night per room.
Please call to ensure availability.

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Four: Wednesday, September 17 - Morning sessions at the Ondessonk Stables / Pastu...
Morning sessions at the Ondessonk Stables / Pasture Ride / Dinner Cooked out on the open Fire / Evening Program: Campfire

Breakfast: Breakfast will be served family-style in the St. Noel dining area.

Morning: After the horses are fed, we will cover horse health and keeping/caring for a horse in our learning lesson. Groom and saddle your horse for an arena lesson where we will do an all-time favorite -the obstacle course!

Lunch: Lunch will be served family-style in the St. Noel dining area.

Afternoon: This will be our open session at the stables. Based on group choices, options include demonstrations, riding lessons, another obstacle course, and other requests. We will wrap up in time for the optional field trip to a local winery. Enjoy the beautiful scenery on the way to one of our local wineries where you can tour, taste, and enjoy!

Dinner: Enjoy a delicious Camp tradition! Our foil dinners will be prepared on a bed of hot coals. Burgers, fresh fixin's, and the works, all enjoyed in the fresh air of a crisp fall evening.

Evening: Another Camp favorite: the campfire program. Songs, stories, and warm memories waiting to be made.

Lodging: St. Noel Center at Camp Ondessonk

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Lodge

Description: Rustic Dormitory style loding nestled in the heart of the Shawnee National Forest. Warm and accommodating dining area where meals are served family-style. Telephone and wireless internet connection available.

Contact info:
3760 Ondessonk Road
Ozark, IL 62972 USA
phone: 618-695-2489
web: www.ondessonk.com

Facility amenities: Walking trails, large deck for relaxing.

Smoking policy: Yes
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Bathroom: Private bath in each double occupancy room.

Additional nights before: $50.00 per night per room.
Please call to ensure availability.

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Five: Thursday, September 18 - Riding the trails of the Shawnee National Forest ...
Breakfast: Breakfast will be served family-style in the St. Noel dining area.

Morning: This morning will find us grooming and saddling our horses and packing for a day-long ride through the sand-stone bluffs and canyons of the Shawnee National Forest. Our route will take us by the highest free-falling waterfall in the state of Illinois while cris-crossing rock-bottom creeks and cutting across sand-stone canyon systems.

Lunch: Take some time out of the saddle to stretch your legs and joy lunch in the fresh air of the great outdoors.

Afternoon: After lunch in the beautiful Shawnee National Forest, we will mount our horses for the ride back to camp. We will pass an old homestead barn and ride back around our lake. When we get back, feel free to spend time saying good bye to your horse, or head for a relaxing hot shower!

Dinner: Dinner will be served family-style in the St. Noel dining area.

Evening: An opportunity to reflect on time spent in the natural world, to share memories freshly made, and to recognize new trail companions who made the experience meaningful.

Lodging: St. Noel Center at Camp Ondessonk

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day Six: Friday, September 19 - Program Wrap Up / Departure
Breakfast: Our final breakfast together. This meal will be served family-style in the St. Noel dining area.

Morning: "The thing to remember when traveling is that the trail is the thing, not the end of the trail. Travel too fast and you miss all that you are traveling for." -Louis L'Amour. Thank you for joining us at the Camp Ondessonk Stables, may our trails cross again!

Meals Included: Breakfast

Important information about your itinerary:
Please know that while we do everything we can to finalize all aspects of our programs well in advance, there are logistics that occasionally must be altered. Our website will reflect the most recent information, and we are committed to providing you with final program details no later than eight weeks prior to the start of programs outside the U.S. and three weeks prior to the start of programs within the U.S. If you ever have questions about your program, please don't hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to assist you.

Our Value Promise To You

You won't find a better value.

Included
at no additional cost on this date ...
5 nights of accommodations
14 meals: 5 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 5 dinners
9 Expert-led lectures
10 Field trips
8 Hands-on experiences

Ratings

4.9
Ratings are determined by participant evaluations.

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