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AILLE CROSS ITINERARY – Winter Riding Program
From October through late April the riding shifts to eastern County Galway near the town of Loughrea. Trail riding, cross country jumping and foxhunting is offered in a rural setting characterized by the gently rolling Slieve Aughty Mountains, brilliant blue lakes and quaint villages.

Foxhunting with the famous Galway Blazers—of which your host Willie Leahy is Field Master—is available three days a week from October through late February. Get to know your horse before setting out with the Blazers by jumping the stone walls in the hills above Willie’s Aille Cross Equestrian Centre. Test your mettle on the international two-star event course at Dartfield Horse Museum and Park, the multi-million Euro facility constructed a few years ago by the Leahy family. (

For those who would prefer not to hunt, the staff at Aille Cross and Dartfield will be glad to create a riding program to fit your needs. Jump as much or as little as you would like. Come and stay a week or let us custom-tailor a vacation which fits your schedule.

All meals are included in riding packages, along with plenty of tea and hot port—a uniquely Irish beverage which is the perfect complement to an afternoon of hunting or hacking about.  

2013-2014 Dates
October through late-April. Hunting with the Blazers available through late February. (An additional capping fee of 150 Euro per hunt is paid directly to the Galway Blazers)

Sample Itinerary
This is only a sample itinerary and is subject to change. If you wish to ride fewer than six days, a shorter itinerary may be arranged.  


Ride out from Aille Cross through the forest to Killnadema. Some optional jumping available while riders get to know their horses and guides can assess the riders’ abilities.


Hunt with the Blazers (in season) and find out firsthand why the hunt is so justifiably famous for its double stone walls. Or, ride to Knock Ash in the hills above Aille Cross and spend the afternoon jumping a variety of walls in a more controlled setting.


Spend the day at Dartfield cross country jumping. The professionally-designed course is large and demanding enough to pique the interest of the most serious of eventers while also boasting a set of fences geared to the more intermediate rider. Explore the museum which attracts thousands of international visitors each year.


Go hunting again with the Blazers. Galway is a large and diverse county, and no two hunts are the same. Many fixtures meet in the middle of villages with traditional stirrup cups taken at local pubs while others convene on the grounds of an ancient castle. The terrain may be flat and rolling or wooded and hilly and bisected by streams and creeks.


Another day at Dartfield with the opportunity for more cross country jumping on the massive course and trailriding in the fields surrounding the museum.


One last chance to chase a fox with the Blazers. If you’re not hunting, you may wish to follow the hunt by car. Saturday is a festive day for the hunt, and many locals choose to follow as spectators. Or, spend the day riding the beautiful farmland and trails around Aille Cross.