Casanare Cattle Drive

Orinoquia Colombia: (IT-COL05)
URL: http://www.hiddentrails.com/tour/colombia_orinoquia_casanare_cattle_drive.aspx

Introduction
Orinoquia Colombia
Only twice a year "Work of the llano" is culturally done in the cattle ranches or hato in the Casanare region. It’s given this name for having more than a thousand hectares and more than a thousand head of cattle where the hato are collected for the vaccination cycles also marking and counting of the new born calves is done.

The work of the llanos in the cattle ranches of Casanare only takes place in the months of May and November, can last from a week to a month according to the size and amount of cattle it has. The hato where you can go and live the experience are, Altimira, Mata de Palma, Boral and Barley according to your travel date.

Accomodation

Accommodations
This is a stationary ride where nights are spent at the same location (Hato) except for the first night which is in a hotel on Bogota. 

Description
During this trip, most of the nights are spent in a Hato.
For those who want to sleep in a bed, we usually use Hato La Aurora, but depending on the date of the tour, we might use other Hatos such as Hato Altamira, Hato Mata de Palma and Hato Santana.
For those who want to sleep in a hammock, we usually use Hato Barley.
If you would prefer to camp, this is also an option, just let us know at the time of booking.

Holiday Inn Airport Hotel in Bogota
This hotel offers comfortable and clean rooms, conveniently located just a few minutes away from the airport. All rooms are equipped with free Wi-Fi, air conditioning, satellite TV and a private bathroom.

Hato La Aurora (bed option)
During your stay here, you will be surrounded by nature while enjoying basic comfort and privacy. This accommodation offers to sleep in a private palm tree cabin with its own bathroom. There are also some rooms located in the main building, all with private bathrooms as well. All rooms are equipped with light and a fan. There is no Wi-Fi available at this property.

Hato Barley (hammock option)
Here, you will sleep like an authentic Colombian cowboy (llanero), in hammocks with mosquito netting. Bathrooms and external showers are available and are shared between guests. Wi-Fi is available at this property.

Room Occupancy
Single supplement is mandatory is we cannot find another rider to share.


Meals
All meals are included in the trip. The food is local Colombian cuisine. All meals are eaten at the accommodations. This trip includes some wine/ beer with dinner.

Dietary Restrictions
We can cater to most dietary restrictions with prior notice.

This trip includes some wine with dinner and can accommodate special dietary requests.

Riding

THE HATO BARLEY
A cattle ranch located between the towns of Tauramena and Maní, two hours from the city of Yopal, the capital of Casanare. For its savannas more than 350 horses gallop in semi-wild state, some of them are mounted once or twice a year for the work of the llanos. This place has an extensive livestock of more than six thousand heads of cattle.

In the horseback riding tours you can have the experience of going deep into the forests, passing through the wetlands, riding through the floodplain savannas, the canals and estuaries. We will find more then nine thousand hectares of the hato, observing white-tailed deer, chigüiros, alligators, picures, wild pigs and more than 200 species of birds - many of them easy to observe. In its lagoons artisanal fishing is done catching the “curito" fish which is rich in proteins and vitamins.

In this location throughout the year is ideal for walking and taking pictures of the fauna and beautiful landscapes in our photographic safari plans.

Also notable in this location is the Anaconda Guio (Eunectes murinus) which pairs in the month of March, felines, such as the puma or American lion, foxes, palm bears, among many other species.

Only twice a year you can participate in the called work of the llano, you can do it in the middle and end of the months of May and November. The dates are normally scheduled when the water comes in and out of the hato, this happens when summer season changes to rainy season or vice versa; the savannas are either flooded or dried, this is the reason the date varies in the different hatos.

The livestock is picked up by the cowboys daily and taken to the corral where they work with the cattle day by day. Some days they work with between six hundred and eight hundred head of cattle depending on how many hey collected in the extensive savannas. In the Hato Barley there is “Cimarrones” cattle-- these are wild cattle that have no iron because they hide in the bushes and have never gone through a corral.

Itinerary

Sample Itinerary - Subject to changes

The work begins daily during these two seasons 4:00am when the workers who have slept in a hammock with a mosquito net get up, have a coffee, and go out to look for their horses to saddle. At dawn (5:00am), they leave towards the place of the savanna chosen for the rodeo of that day. They have not had breakfast, but they carry their "bastimento" (beef or pork mince, cheese, fried green plantain slices and fried wheat flour tortillas) in a cloth bag. Towards 10:00, 11:00 or later, they arrive at the rodeo of cattle or horses that go to work that day in the corral, dismantle and remove chairs and implements from the horses to rinse them with fresh water. They then go to breakfast. Immediately they finish, they are ready to do the work in the corrals with the horses or with the cattle they have brought, and work on removing, deworming, counting, and marking. This lasts until 4:00pm or 6:00pm and riders are rewarded with a late lunch. Then the anecdotes of the day are discussed and sung accompanied by a cuatro (small 4-string guitar). At 20:00 they sleep in the chinchorro with mosquito net until the next day.

Day 1:
Transfer from El Dorado airport to the Hotel in Bogotá.

Day 2:
Breakfast at the hotel then transfer from the hotel to the El Dorado airport and flight to the city of El Yopal. At the Alcaravan airport we will pick you up to transfer to the hato located 2 hours from Yopal. General orientation and welcome at the hato then lunch. Induction of scheduled activities in the plan of work of the llanos. Familiarization with the horses, travel to Palma triste to observe the sunset over the lagoon. We will see in the route: deer, chigüiros, birds in their natural habitat. Finally dinner at the hato.
Riding 3 hours

Day 3:
A metallic sound at 4AM in the morning indicates that it’s time to take a Colombian coffee and ride the horses, this is done by the llaneros before the sunrise. Collecting the wild horses to then transfer them to the corral. Breakfast around 10-11AM and then work in the corral where you can observe the dressage of some foals (Jaripeo) - about of 3 or 4 these horses are given to each worker to do their task. Typical lunch, this is traditionally taken in the afternoon between 3-4PM. Afterwards the llanero takes out his musical instruments and relaxes for the next day. Dinner at the hato.
Riding 5 hours

Day 4:
We will have coffee and ride on the horses to go for the first batch of cattle drive - cattle drive of the Creole herd is done the first day.
At the end of the afternoon we will participate in the elaboration of ropes that are made with untanned leather in a traditional way as we will see an artisanal work with the horse's mane.
Riding 6 hours

Day 5:
We will have coffee and ride the horses to go for the second batch of cattle that’s fed with native pastures, second day cattle drive.
Riding 6 hours

Day 6:
Breakfast, goodbye to the Hato, departure to the city of Yopal where we will visit the saddlers of the area, lunch, city tour and depart to the airport. Flight at the end of the afternoon.


Rates and Dates for Casanare Cattle Drive

Rates include:


- One night of accommodation in Bogotá.
- Airfare for Bogotá-Yopal-Bogotá
- Transportation (Yopal alcaravan airport to the chosen hato-airport).
- 4 nights selected accommodation in the hato (bed or hammock).
- Food indicated in the plan. (Typical local food)
- Hydration.
- Activities indicated in the plan.
- Local guide in the hato.
- Personal accident insurance, during the stay.

Packages and Options



  • SeasonYearDescription US$
    A
    20196 day trip, AP (bed option)$2750
    • Single supplement$375
      Small group supplement (2-3 pax only), pp$375
      Small group supplement (1 pax only)$860
  • B
    20196 day trip, AP (hammock option)$2480
    • Small group supplement (2-3 pax only), pp$395
      Small group supplement (1 pax only)$880

* prices are per person based on double/twin occupancy


Season Seasons  Min / MaxReserve
A 2019 05/01 - 05/31 6d / 5n 6 day trip, AP (bed option) 4 /15 Reserve
B 2019 05/01 - 05/31 6d / 5n 6 day trip, AP (hammock opti... 4 /15 Reserve
A 2019 11/01 - 11/30 6d / 5n 6 day trip, AP (bed option) 4 /15 Reserve
B 2019 11/01 - 11/30 6d / 5n 6 day trip, AP (hammock opti... 4 /15 Reserve

Dates Note:

Rates do not include:

Tips, laundry, phone calls, or mini bar consumption, or any other services not indicated in the plan.

Other Info
Meeting: Yopal
Airport: Bogota
Transfer: Bogota

Climate:
                                                    Bogotá area
 

Month

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Average High Temperature (°F)

68

68

68

67

67

66

65

66

66

67

67

67

Average Low Temperature (°F)

43

45

47

49

49

48

47

46

46

47

47

45

Average High Temperature (°C)

20

20

20

20

19

19

18

19

19

19

19

20

Average Low Temperature (°C)

6

7

8

9

9

9

8

8

8

8

8

7

Average Precipitation (days of rain)

3

6

9

11

12

9

7

7

8

11

10

7

Source: NOAA


Seasons

The average temperature is 26 °C, relative humidity is above 75%, rainy season is between April to November, and summer season or dry season is from December to March.
The climate is hot all year round with plenty of rainfall. The least amount of rainfall occurs in January. The average in this month is 42 mm. The greatest amount of precipitation occurs in October, with an average of 278 mm.

It’s recommended to wear comfortable clothes, long-sleeved shirts, long, fresh and easy to dry pants, hat, boots or shoes to tie, sunscreen and repellent that’s environmentally friendly, sunglasses and if you want equestrian gloves.

What To Bring:
TO RIDE:
  • Easy-drying seamless pants ideal for reducing skin chafing
  • Long-sleeved shirts
  • A set of clothes for the day and an extra set of clothes in case we  would require an extra change
  • Riding helmet (recommended for all trips)
  • Equestrian gloves if you use them
  • Hat for windy conditions
PERSONAL CLOTHING:
  • Waterproof jacket (in rainy season April-November)
  • Comfortable T-shirts
  • shirts
  • Pants
  • Shorts
  • Underwear
  • socks
  • Pajamas
  • Bag for dirty clothes
  • runners or boots
  • bathing suit
  • bath shorts
ADDITIONAL THINGS TO BRING:
  • Personal items
  • protection against insects and sunscreen that’s environmentally friendly
  • personal medicines
  • handkerchiefs
  • camera
  • Sunglasses with straps
  • Canteen or thermos (if you have them): we count with water dispenser to fill them
  • Small flashlight.