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I searched the archives and couldn't find anything on this subject, so....

Do any of you bring any type of shelter for your goats when you're on the trail? Specifically, I'm thinking about something like a tarp or floor-less tent to protect them from the hot sun/cold rain when you're in camp.

My wife and I have several backpack trips in the boondocks of Idaho planned for this summer and want to bring our goats with us, but at less than 6 months old they are far too young to do anything but tag along. This means my wife and I will be the ones lugging all the gear, so we obviously want to keep the weight down as much as possible. We'll already be carrying extra stuff for the goats in the form of leads, halters, and ropes, and I'd just as soon not add a tarp to the load unless it's absolutely necessary. But since we won't always be setting up our daily campsites in forested areas we can't count on having enough trees for the goats to shade/shelter under.

On a related note, I know many people bring along grain (c.o.b.) to supplement goats on the trail. I assume that won't be necessary for my little guys since they won't be packing a load (I might need it!) -- but maybe I'm wrong and they should have the extra nutrition. What do you guys think?
 

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We pack a small lightweight tarp made out of waterproof nylon & tie it between 2 trees. I think we ordered ours out of a Campmor catalog. Then, when it's time to turn in for the night, we "high-line" the goats underneath it. We always put the tarp up, unless we are positive it won't rain. The first couple of times, they weren't so crazy about the tarp, but after it started raining, they laid down under it & now they are pretty used to it.

We never bring along supplemental food for our goats when we are out hiking; especially if you are going to be in a forested area like Idaho, you shouldn't need to. We do bring "treats" to reward them for a job well done at the end of the day. But they should get plenty of variety & a balanced diet by eating the "smorgasbord" along the trail & around camp.
 

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You should read Bob Jones posts.
He packs a tarp. Hammock and sleeping bag.
He threads the hammock through the sleeping
bag under the tarp. Then the goats sleep near or
under him as he snuggles down in his hammock/
bag. He says you stay warm because there is
no pressure points under the bag that way.
Insulation is completely around you.
I have not tried it yet. But it sounded interesting
for sure.
 

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Unless it’s a short trip and I know the weather is going to be good, I take a light tarp or goat coats.

The goats don’t need grain on a hike as long as they have reasonable browse time every day.
 

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We use a cheap blue tarp tied to the highline on one side. See the picture on the right hand side. I have changed it up a little since I took that picture. I now tie the other side of the tarp "higher" than the highline when possible so the goats can't walk around and onto the tarp. Keeps them from getting tangled and still keeps the rain off.
 

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Rex said:
We use a cheap blue tarp tied to the highline on one side. See the picture on the right hand side. I have changed it up a little since I took that picture. I now tie the other side of the tarp "higher" than the highline when possible so the goats can't walk around and onto the tarp. Keeps them from getting tangled and still keeps the rain off.
I always wondered about that picture. First time I tried it that way I had goats shredding the tarp by climbing all over it. So I now put the tarp over my hammock and the goats low-lined under the hammock.

I occasionally get brushed by the closest goats, usually Pig and Moe, but we have no nighttime separation anxiety as we had with the tent. (and I don't get peed on.)
 

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We run two ropes, one for the actual highline and another to attach the tarp to. It can pull the tarp down too low otherwise. With the double rope you can set the tarp like an a frame over the highline and tie it off high up so they can't get on it at all.The a frame shape keeps rain off more effeciently than the tarp on one side. Unless it's blowing sideways.
 

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Unless rain is very unlikely, it's 2 nylon tarps for me. One (9x12) for my hammock, my dog, and the goat packs and other gear. The other (10x10) for the goats. It has to be nearby, ideally using one of the same trees my tarp is attached to. I don't want the goats under my tarp at all. They will pee and poop on things, and try to pilfer the goat packs, so they get yelled at and have sticks and pine cones thrown at them if they invade my space. I don't high line my goats. That way they can go find shade or a snack if they need it.

When around camp I put a bell on one of the goats. That way I know where they are, and it makes a noise that might keep predators away.
 
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