The Long Riders' Guild

The Horse Travel Handbook


CuChullaine O'Reilly



The Horse Travel Handbook is a cavalry-style manual drawn from its parent edition The Encyclopaedia of Equestrian Exploration. It is small enough to fit into a saddlebag and contains the most critically important information that a Long Rider may need to consult while travelling.


The concise, easy-to-use book covers every aspect needed to successfully complete a journey by horse, including how to organize the trip, plan a route, choose the proper equipment and purchase horses.


Traditional challenges such as loading a pack saddle, avoiding dangerous animals, fording rivers and outwitting horse thieves are covered here along with ingenious solutions to modern dilemmas like crossing international borders, surviving vehicle traffic and negotiating with hostile bureaucrats. This handbook covers all aspects of equine welfare including feeding, watering, saddling and health care. Technical details such as daily travel distance, where to locate nightly shelter and ways to avoid cultural conflicts are among the hundreds of specific topics examined.


Equestrian explorers have special linguistic needs. Vital words such as hay and farrier are not found in standard phrase-books. A special appendix contains the Equestionary that provides images of objects and situations most likely to be of use when language is a barrier.


Created after decades of study by CuChullaine O’Reilly, one of the Founding Members of the Long Riders' Guild, this comprehensive book is filled with the indispensable knowledge needed to resolve problems, overcome hardships and avoid dangers while travelling. Just as importantly, it empowers readers to turn their dream into a life-changing equestrian journey.


The Foreword was written by Colonel John Blashford-Snell, who founded the Scientific Exploration Society and was awarded the Patron's Gold Medal of the Royal Geographical Society.


Here is a review on Horse Talk, the international equestrian news service.


 Reviews by Long Riders and Readers


A book that can change your life!
If I had this information 50 years ago it would have helped me make life changing decisions. Make plans when you are young. Sit down with your partner and draw a life map. I’m not saying jump on a horse and ride around the world, but do your adventures when you are young. I started kayaking at 70 years of age, but then terminal cancer altered any future plans. This book has a tremendous amount of info for persons of any age. Follow your heart or your mind will know no peace! 
Jeri Gauthier

The Horse Travel Handbook is destined to become the Long Rider's Bible.

It has been an honour and a privilege, a pleasure and a surprise, to be among the first to read this wonderful work. Only CuChullaine O’Reilly could accomplish this task. I know of no other person with such energy, dedication and the knowledge needed to put together such an incredible effort.  Read more....
Argentine Long Rider Benjamin Reynal rode in South America and is the author of ‘Cuando La Distancia Revela.’


This Handbook is the Holy Grail for Long Riders.

This is an amazing book, and it covers EVERYTHING. CuChullaine O'Reilly should be proud of his contribution to not only the equine world, and the world of Long Riding, but of his contribution to history, literature, and the preservation of the age old practice of slow travel on horseback in this modern day of technology and such fast paced movement. Read more…
Australian Long Rider
Kimberley Delavere is riding solo along the Bicentennial National Trail.


The Horse Travel Handbook is written for all modern Long Riders worldwide.

It is quite extraordinary in the global range and depth of its practical content and advice, and in its sense of ethic, its vision and its passion. It is written for those planning their first journey and those already highly experienced. Read more...

William Reddaway and his horse Strider completed the first modern equestrian journey to thirty of Great Britain’s historic cathedrals and abbeys.


Noted for its no-nonsense advice

Equestrian travel is for the young at heart!  I am about to depart on my first serious equestrian journey at the ripe age of 81.

I most urgently recommend The Horse Travel Handbook to all present and future Long Riders. It would be positively unwise even to set off on a trek without a copy to explain, advise and warn about potential problems and their resolutions.  Read more....

Sir Humphry Wakefield read The Horse Travel Handbook prior to riding from Scotland towards Cornwall.


The Horse Travel Handbook Could Save Your Life

I would very very strongly recommend this book not just for the would be equestrian traveller, I would also recommend it to people who work with horses a lot. Not only is the Handbook invaluable to those thinking of travel by horse, it has such useful information that the weekend trail rider can also benefit a lot. The knowledge is a compilation of experience both positive and negative which could save someone (and their horse) from making an unsuspecting poor decision while traveling on horseback.  Read more.... 

Stacey Nahachewsky, her father, David, and sister, Teresa, crossed Canada. They are the first Long Riders not only to take the Horse Travel Handbook with them, but to consult the book while travelling.


A One of a Kind Book

The Horse Travel Handbook really is a one of a kind book that belongs on every Long Rider's book shelf and in their saddle bags on journeys. Also an absolute must read for anyone planning a long ride. It condenses into small, easy to read sections a vast amount of knowledge that one could spend years trying to accumulate from a variety of books, websites, personal experience and the experience of others. I truly believe this book will save not only the lives of many horses but those of their riders too. I have not come across anything like it before. It is truly a one of a kind book and a massively important work that will change the course of equestrian travel history for the better.

Cathleen Leonard read the Horse Travel Handbook prior to riding from Durness, the most north-westerly town in Scotland, to Cornwall.

Horse Travel Handbook is an answer to a prayer
The incredible surprise and delight at finding the Horse Travel Handbook is an answer to an unspoken prayer. Read more…  
Dr. Paula Kristian read the Horse Travel Handbook prior to departing on a journey through the United States.

Twelve Years in the Saddle

With 28,000 miles and 12 years of equestrian travel experience, I say The Horse Travel Handbook is a must read.  Read more...

American Long Rider Bernice Ende


Bravo for a Brilliant Book.

In today’s society, full of vehicles and modern technologies, equestrian travel is a thing that can change a person. The Horse Travel Handbook has made history as the first of its kind and many generations will gain valuable knowledge from it. Read more…

Dalibor Balut made the first modern ride to all corners of his native Czech Republic. The journey took him along the borders of Poland, Germany, Austria and Slovakia.


Don't Leave the Barn Without this Book!

Starting a Long Ride requires a lot of character. Those who read The Horse Travel Handbook will be much more likely to reach their destination safely and in good health. Read more…

American Long Rider Howard Wooldridge rode from Savannah, Georgia to Newport, Oregon; then he rode across the USA again from Los Angeles to New York.


I cannot recommend this book enough!

As a newcomer to the world of horses, The Horse Travel Handbook gave me strength and clarity to plan my mammoth dream of a long ride. CuChullaine O’Reilly manages to cut down foolish romantic notions that can get you and your horse killed, while still encouraging the great adventure of the long ride provided one has reverence for the massive undertaking they are beginning. Read More…

Gideon Irving read The Horse Travel Handbook prior to departing on an 8,000 mile equestrian journey across the United States.


The Horse Travel Handbook is a great source of proven advice.

This is the book I wish I’d read before I travelled twice (27 months - 5,000 miles) across the USA by horse and mule. The Handbook is not just for folks that want to ride across a continent, The Horse Travel Handbook is a great source of proven advice for shorter trips, from afternoon to overnight jaunts. Read more…

American Long Rider Bernie Harberts rode “ocean to ocean,” across the USA. Then he travelled by mule-drawn wagon from Canada to Mexico.


The Most Important Equestrian Travel Book Since Tschiffely’s Ride

The Horse Travel Handbook is more than useful - it's just totally absorbing! It is written with eloquence, passion and extraordinary attention to detail and the wisdom of experience shines through every page. This book will be as much of a landmark in equestrian travel history as Tschiffely's Ride.

Paula Sells is the author of “The British Tack Room.


3,500-mile Long Rider Endorses CuChullaine O'Reilly's The Horse Travel Handbook

CuChullaine O'Reilly has devoted more time, energy, personal resources, intelligence, devotion, reportage, and fervour to the preservation of the art of long-distance riding than any other world citizen in modern times--and probably ever.  Read more....

American Long Rider Lisa Stewart


I can't recommend the Horse Travel Handbook highly enough!

What a remarkable, knowledgeable and convenient resource for anyone wishing to undertake equestrian travel.  Read more...

Australian Long Rider Danny Phegan rode from Darwin, Northern Territory to Cockle Creek Bay, Tasmania.


A New Classic.

CuChullaine O’Reilly, founder of the international Long Riders’ Guild, has distilled hundreds of Long Riders’ accounts and tips into a manual dense with information on every conceivable aspect of planning, preparing for, and surviving a long-distance ride. But long riding is about more than practicality. O’Reilly speaks eloquently of the spiritual changes many Long Riders undergo, the necessity of leaving competitiveness and timetables behind, and the perils of chasing fame and fortune. Again and again, the Horse Travel Handbook emphasizes the ethics of equine travel: conducting oneself honourably and always, always putting the welfare of one’s equine companion(s) first. Read more….

American Long Rider Katie Cooper rode from Mississippi to Arizona.


The Horse Travel Handbook is a MUST READ for anyone even considering a long ride.

 It is the only primer available that details the unique experiences of those who set out on long distance equestrian journey. I wish it had been available when I was planning my first ride years ago -- it would have saved me the frustration of sifting through bad and inadequate information.  Read more...

American Long Rider Samantha Szesciorka made equestrian journeys through the deserts of Nevada


I can’t say enough about this magnificent book.

The Horse Travel Handbook by CuChullaine O’Reilly is without doubt one of the finest equestrian books of any kind ever written. I can’t say enough about this magnificent book. Between these covers is an astonishingly comprehensive and vital wealth of information about travel with horses under any circumstance the rider would ever encounter on planet earth. This is a book for the ages. Read more....
American Long Rider Doug Preston is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical, who rode across the Despoblado Desert and is the author of Cities of Gold.


CuChullaine O'Reilly's tireless work in creating the Horse Travel Handbook is an invaluable gift to all those wanting to pursue the magic of equestrian travel.

In an era of jet travel, smart-phones and satellite technology, it is often claimed that the world is becoming smaller, more homogenous, less diverse, and generally travelled out. And yet step into the saddle, point your horse to the horizon, leave roads, fences, and Monday-to-Friday life behind, and it becomes obvious that the world is still as large, enchanting, and forever surprising as perhaps it has ever been.  Read more....

Australian Long Rider Tim Cope is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society who rode from Mongolia to Hungary and is the author of ‘On the Trail of Genghis Khan.’


Aimé Tschiffely would have loved the Horse Travel Handbook.

This fabulous book truly assembles vast amounts of information, organized in brilliant detail that addresses a plethora of important subjects. Aimé Tschiffely would have made room for the Horse Travel Handbook in his pack had this masterfully crafted reference been printed 90 years before its time. Read more...

Gordon Cowan, USA


The Origin of the Horse Travel Handbook.

I became a Long Rider by chance, not choice, when I accompanied CuChullaine O’Reilly on the perilous equestrian journey through Pakistan that became the inspiration for this Handbook. I have witnessed how the author has spent the majority of his life finding and preserving this rare information from sources around the world. He had a great dream, to ensure that equestrian travel would be preserved for posterity, and this is the great book whose inspiration lies in the Karakorum Mountains we rode through together. Read more….

American Long Rider Noor Mohammad Khan is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and was part of the Karakoram Equestrian Expedition which made a historic journey through northern Pakistan.


Essential for the horseman!

The importance and value of the Handbook cannot be underestimated, as well as being a practical 'how to?' Guide for anyone planning a long ride, it also preserves a treasure of equestrian knowledge gathered through the ages in an easy to read and entertaining form. Read more...

New Zealand Long Rider Ian Robinson made solo journeys across Mongolia, Tibet and Afghanistan.  Author of the award-winning "Tea with the Taliban".


Providing all Equestrians with a Moral Compass.

The Horse Travel Handbook is receiving well deserved accolades from a growing number of Long Riders, who have been there and done that. To those who are becoming inspired to become legends, themselves, this book details the “how to.” However, for the millions of us, who ride a bit less, this book is of historic importance, because the Handbook, itself, honours the animals by providing all equestrians with a moral compass by which anyone can understand our sacred responsibility to protect and defend our fellow travelers, upon whose backs we ride.

Robert Ferrand, USA


If you are planning a horseback journey, you need this book!

The Handbook does an excellent job of presenting life saving information, mixed with accounts and examples from actual Long Riders. I plan to read it again, and you can bet that when I pack my saddlebags it will be included as one of my must-have items! Read more...

Jennifer Poling read the Horse Travel Handbook prior to riding along the American Discovery Trail.


Horse Travel as Poetry.

The Horse Travel Handbook is surely a lot more than merely a handbook. It is a masked poetry, a long poem disguised as an anthology of tips and advices for long distance riders. On the surface, the book deals with knots and choosing horses. In the core it deals with how to be a new human, with new eyes for the world and everything. Read more...

Indonesian Long Rider Nirwan Asuka rode through Papua New Guinea.


All the questions and more are answered within the Handbook.

The Horse Travel Handbook answers all my questions, and questions I didn't yet know I had. From the Long Rider daily routine to emergency preparedness, from buying the ideal long ride horse to what to expect when your ride is done, CuChullaine O'Reilly covers it all, with information gleaned from his own experience and from countless other long riders throughout history and modern times. Read more....

Meredith Cherry read The Horse Travel Handbook while preparing to be the first woman to ride to all 48 states in the USA.


The Horse Travel Handbook is a literary time capsule.

Here is the longed-for map that stretches from the past and into the future. If you haven’t read the Horse Travel Handbook, you’re not ready to undertake an equestrian journey.  Read more....

Swiss Long Rider Catherine Waridel is a Founding Member of the Long Riders’ Guild who rode from the Crimea to Mongolia and is the author of ‘Voyage dans les pas de Rubrouck.’


When you're a Member of the Guild, you never ride alone.

The Horse Travel Handbook is very useful to people that are going to start planning a trip from the very beginning. I see traveling as a state of mind, not about getting away from things but going forward in ourselves. Connecting to nature through animals as travel companions is a way to realize how deeply dependent on nature we are. This way of traveling brings a greater sense of overall awareness and ultimately with ourselves. Read more...

Valerio Ceconi of Italy read the Horse Travel Handbook prior to riding across Argentina.


Indispensable for anyone considering a journey on horseback.

This is not simply experience gained by one horse traveller. It is a compilation of just about everything ever written about horse travel, the result of years collecting and preserving out of print books as well as collecting information through a website from many current riders. This book is a valuable not only to all horsemen who seek this special relationship with their horse, but to travellers and historians as well. Read more...

American Long Rider Lucy Leaf made an 8,000-mile journey through the United States.


A+ for any rider.

This book went into detail in everything that is so important for any rider, long distance or not. It very well could safe my life when out in the back country! Read more...

Stevie Anna Plummer read the Horse Travel Handbook prior to riding across Patagonia.


The Horse Travel Handbook explains how the trip serves as a gateway to self-discovery.

The Horse Travel Handbook is an informative, accurate and valuable travel guide that is of scientific value. Yet the book serves another purpose too. It encourages the traveller to view the horseback journey from a philosophical perspective. It explains how the trip serves as a gateway to self-discovery. Read more....

Turkmen Long Rider Geldy Kyarizov is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society who rode across Central Asia and Russia.


A necessary read for Historical Fiction Authors.

If your novel has any stretches of a long journey involving horses, the Horse Travel Handbook is an essential reference! I am a writer of historical fiction. The Handbook has opened up several entirely new avenues of understanding of my characters, leaving only the necessity for me to research the cultural applications of the Laws of the Long Ride to my plot. Read more....

American author M.T. Noah's forthcoming book, "The Wind Changed, Father", recounts how a young woman departs from tenth century Korea on horseback.


A brilliant book full of information and hard-won knowledge that would otherwise be lost to history.

This is a primer of all the issues facing the modern day long-rider. I am planning my own long distance journey on horseback currently, and have found this to be indispensable to my preparations, full of hard-won knowledge and salutary warnings when it comes to safety. I am glad that I have not had to learn its many lessons the hard way. Thank you, CuChullaine, for taking the time to gather the information for this book together, and to create the long-rider community and website, which is also a wonderful resource. I couldn't do without it.

Cal Flyn of Scotland read the Horse Travel Handbook prior to riding along the Pony Express Trail.


A Bible for the equestrian world.

Only CuChullaine O'Reilly could have written this book with his boundless enthusiasm, energy and first hand, extensive knowledge and dedication to the subject of long-riding. Sensitively laid out, it includes every possible subject for overland horse travel, including even a picto-gram for the inevitable tight translation situations. It goes without saying that CuChullaine and Basha O'Reilly are single-handedly changing the face of horse culture and they are catching it just in time before it is lost forever. The Horse Travel Handbook will be THE bible for the equestrian world for generations.

Canadian Long Rider Bonnie Folkins has made multiple journeys in Mongolia and Kazakhstan.



Available from Booktopia in Australia,  Amazon UK and Amazon US.


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