Ranch Camp

Connecticut’s Top Ranked Equestrian Camp


Quality Programs- Long-Standing Traditions

Hide-a-Way Ranch at Camp Jewell YMCA provides a unique setting for our horse-loving Ranch Campers to enjoy a traditional camp experience with an equestrian focus. The one thing everyone has in common at Ranch Camp is the love and enjoyment of horseback riding and working with horses. This creates a stronger, more personal relationship between the campers in their cabins, riding groups, and in the overall Ranch Camp program.

Low Camper to Staff Ratio

Our 1 to 3 staff to camper ratio coupled with our highly trained horseback riding instructors ensure that riders of all abilities are given the time and attention to improve their riding skills and talents.

We offer a variety of programs based on each camper’s age. All of our Ranch Camp options are offered as a two-week program.  Junior Ranch is offered for ages 7-9, Drivers is offered for ages 10-11 and Top Hands for ages 12-16.


All campers will be able to participate in a variety of horse related activities such as; trail rides, hayrides, vaulting and off-horse lessons in addition to their daily riding lessons. Regardless of horseback riding ability or experience, beginner to advanced, our counselors and riding instructors focus on each individual camper, ensuring a great experience in the riding ring and in camp overall.

Progressive Equestrian Programs

All of our Ranchers are able to participate in the Neckerchief Achievement Awards. This gives campers the opportunity to set a goal and a purpose for their lessons at camp. Neckerchief levels are awarded based on the ability to obtain specific horseback riding skills, achieve a certain level of horsemanship knowledge, and be an involved participant in the Ranch community. There are 9 different Neckerchief levels campers can work to accomplish (Junior, Filly, Greenhorn, Colt, Yearling, Mustang, Bronco, Jr. Wrangler, and Wrangler). Only a few campers each summer reach the Jr. wrangler and Wrangler Neckerchiefs, making them a huge accomplishment for any camper to reach. Although Neckerchiefs are not required, it is an honorable and strong tradition at the Ranch.

We offer seven levels of riding classes to accommodate riders of all abilities, beginner through advanced. In addition to mounted horseback riding lessons, riders also have:

  • Unmounted horsemanship classes
  • At least one trail ride
  • Climbing
  • Swimming
  • Campfires
  • Team-building games
  • Arts & Crafts
  • The daily care of our 20+ horses
  • Many other traditional camp activities!