Man Travels 350 Miles on Horseback to Pickup Grandchildren from School

Posted by Allie Layos
children on horseback
DW

This German man made a promise to his grandchildren to pick them up from school on horseback.

Hans Watzl, 62, is an avid trail rider who promised his grandchildren, 7-year-old Hannes and 5-year-old Esther, that he would pick them up from school on horseback.

Keeping the unique promise involved two horses and a cross-country trip of 350 miles from a village outside Nuremberg to the Bodelschwingh School in Münster. 

man on trail rideMan on trail ride

“I thought I would pick them up, put them on [the horse], and off they’d go,” Watzl told German news agency dpa.

He desensitized the horses (Solfari and Flüga) to traffic before embarking on the journey, which took four weeks. They braved rain and spent nights at ranches and horseback riding stations along the way, taking a break every sixth day.


Watzl arrived in Münster this past Saturday, and picked his grandchildren up from school on Monday, where Hannes and Ester were eagerly awaiting his arrival with a welcome sign.

The school’s principal, Petra Bönisch, even gave a small speech, and the horses enjoyed celebratory treats.

children being led on horseback

“Really cool,” one of the schoolchildren said to dpa. “But also a little crazy.”

Watzl’s timing was perfect, as Oct. 3 was German Unity Day – a bank holiday celebrating German reunification. Since Hannes and Esther had no school the following day, they were able to spend even more time with their grandfather, as well as Solfari and Flüga.

Did you ever dream of leaving school on horseback? Share your thoughts below!

All images via DW.

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Man Travels 350 Miles on Horseback to Pickup Grandchildren from School