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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm a new guy especially to pack goats. When I grew up, among other things, we had a horse or two around during Jr High & High School. (Quarter Horse Mare & colts & little Shetland who had been a stallion but became a gelding later in life.) We also always had Nubian goats for milk & weed (not a good combination :rolleyes:) control on the black berry bushes etc in Oregon. I loved having both. Sadly I have not had the opportunity to have either since that time & even more sadly neither have my kids. Hopefully that will be changing...at least in the goat department.

The following thread inspired me to make my first post here.

http://www.packgoatforum.com/f9/pictures-your-goats-291/index2.html


Rufus, my packgoat, after climbing 4000' and covering 9 miles of trail. Ben Lomond Peak is the location.
Panning to the left a bit and you could almost see my house. :p All great pictures on this post & in the pictures thread but this one on Ben Lomond in Northern Utah especially caught my eye as two of my boys (10, 13) and I did this as a backpack trip in June from the divide side. We live in the North Ogden Area and look at this mountain from our deck & kitchen every day. We love it...the views are killer from on top & you can look in to at least three valleys, the Great Salt Lake, Antelope Island, Willard Bay, Pineview & Matua Reservoir as well as several rows of mountains. We also did Lewis Peak last November (Grouse hunting) & also in May.

On the BL trip another gentleman accompanying us brought a pack horse at the last minute. It was nice but would have been nicer had I known it was coming as we might have packed our packs a bit differently. ;) It was nice for the extra water it carried though as there isn't any on this hike unless there happens to be snow. I watched with great interest with this as having an animal help carry the burden and extending my abilities as I get older has been a long time interest. This was my first hike with animals.

After spending the night half way up...2000 ft & 4'ish miles, we left the horse at our camp tied up while we summited with our kids the next morning. After summiting and eating out lunch we went back down to our camp, grabbed our gear & the horse and then descended the 2000 ft of switch backs on the south face in the hot sun. Probably 13-14 miles that day with 2000 ft ascent and nearly 4000 ft decent.

On the way down I again watched the horse with interest and asked lots of technical questions of the owner. One thing I didn't like is it seemed at times the horse was more interested in it's pace rather than ours and would kind of nudge the owner especially when going down hill. Irritating and he had to back it off a couple of times...always holding the lead even in precarious scenarios with mountain bikers and motorcycles etc. While it carried a substantial load it was very limited in its abilities and range on food and water. It had to be ditched half way up and was all but done by the end of the second day with out serious refills. It had to stay in camp and limited which trails we took. Yes I know it could carry more (for a price in many regards) & could have gone further but that is not really an issue as I think most days 10-15 miles is our limit. (We did do a 22 mile to Union Falls in Yellowstone a couple of years ago, in and out in one day...but it is more than I want to do on a regular 1 day basis....especially packing.)

While the above mentioned horse was well trained, I have decided they take much more attention, effort, cost, space, lead and control on the trail than I am interested in. I researched lamas...with out getting into great detail...I don't think they are for me either. Anyway, it was actually this Ben Lomond trip that has lead me to seriously consider acquiring pack goats. Than I remembered how a friend mentioning a couple of years ago, how his dad had gone to using pack goats. I also remembered the many fond memories of our goats as a kid. I think, if you don't have to ride, that the pack goats make the most sense logically pound for pound, $ for $ as well as time & effort. But I'm preaching to the choir I am sure...

Since then I have been doing much research and have spoke by phone to one pack goat owner who was really great in lending input. (He may actually be on this site.) While I have half acre lot in the city, it is a far cry from enough space. If I can work out some kind of symbiotic relationship with someone locally and very close on the North Bench I will be investing in some and looking forward to the day when we can pack with them.

Thx for letting me ramble...and great threads!

Cheers,

TOU
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Great post. And how wonderful it must be to have that kinda hike right out your back door :)
Thank you.

We used to live on a hill on the Washington side of the Columbia River outside of Portland Oregon...bedroom widow could see Mt St Helen's & Mt Hood as but could also see the Columbia on the side. Loved it and it was also beautiful...beautiful...beautiful but we moved back to Utah a couple of years ago after spending 8 years there. Much of the reason is my kids were getting older and I want to do more out of doors than I was actually doing. No offense to any one living there...but this was especially true as there was 200 days of rain, 100 days of overcast & 65 days of true sunshine.

Utah has 300 days of sunshine and who cares what happens on the 65. ;) Oh...and I love and missed the snow; we have even done a small amount of snow camping and have other snow type interest. I do miss the coast/beach but do visit and we have done more camping hunting in Utah the past 3 year than the previous 8 by a factor of 3-4. Works for us...Now just need to find a local some for some goats.:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Great post. And how wonderful it must be to have that kinda hike right out your back door :)
BTW, you live in a pretty cool local as well as you're only 2-3 hours from Portland, Bend, Moses Lake & the Spokane/Coeur D'Alene areas which have some amazing hiking areas. Nice! Tri is a bit hot though. ;)
 
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