Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Re: [Hammock Camping] Gila Wilderness trip report

Expand Messages
  • Dave Womble
    Tim, That sounds like a great way to do it and I know Ed Speer uses a vapor barrier at times between his hammock and peapod to get extra warmth. Sounds like
    Message 1 of 17 , Oct 3, 2007
    View Source
    • 0 Attachment
      Tim,

      That sounds like a great way to do it and I know Ed Speer uses a vapor
      barrier at times between his hammock and peapod to get extra warmth.
      Sounds like your arrangement works about the same.

      I know what you mean about the conflict with bottom side insulation
      and bottom entry hammocks, I used one for the first year or so of my
      hammock camping until I tried Ed's hammock for a few minutes on the
      1st SEHHA backpacking trip... they were backpacking trips instead of
      campouts in earlier days. After that I was sold on the top entry
      approach with a removable bugnet and a decent size rectangular tarp.
      It is like a different world. I almost look forward to overnight
      rains as I tend to sleep better.

      Dave Womble
      aka Youngblood 2000
      Designer of the Speer Segmented Pad Extender, SnugFit Underquilt, and
      Winter Tarp
    • Pat
      that was great sorry I emailed you I should have looked further. after reading that you have peaked my intrest up a bunch now. How do you train them to walk
      Message 2 of 17 , Oct 4, 2007
      View Source
      • 0 Attachment
        that was great sorry I emailed you I should have looked further.
        after reading that you have peaked my intrest up a bunch now.
        How do you train them to walk with you on trail and stay with you at
        night and not worry about them leaving you high and dry and packing
        stuff out for your self.




        --- In hammockcamping@yahoogroups.com, "Jeff Ross"
        <jlross_tijeras@...> wrote:
        >
        > Neither I, nor the goats, carried any food for them. They did carry
        > a couple liters of water, but they didn't drink it. I did. They
        > drank from stream crossings. They ate wild forage (pine needles,
        oak
        > leaves, twigs, flowers, weeds, etc, etc). They eat a little grass,
        > but not much. Having had a very good monsoon (rainy season) this
        > year, the Gila country is lush and green now. The goats really
        > thrived on this food, and actually gained weight during the trip.
        > When they are full grown (at about age 3) they will weigh 200-250
        > lb, and will be able to carry about 40 lb each on a trip like this.
        > There are several manufacturers of goat packing equipment. They
        make
        > little sawbuck pack saddles and panniers. A complete saddle/pannier
        > combo will cost about $200. The gear they need consists of a tarp,
        a
        > leash for each of them, and a first aid kit. They sleep under the
        > tarp, the leashes allow me to control them when we're near a road
        or
        > other hazard, and we share the first aid kit.
        >
        > I bought these guys last year in June (for about $70 each), when
        > they were 3 mo old. At that age they were ready to wean, or switch
        > from milk to an adult hay/forage diet. I got them from a dairy.
        Each
        > year the dairies have lots of little billy goats they just want rid
        > of. Since then I've taken them camping and hiking a lot. At about 7
        > months old I had them castrated by the vet. By that time they were
        > stinking and fighting and I just about couldn't stand them any
        more.
        > After their "attitude adjustment" procedure, they quit stinking and
        > became mellow good natured guys. I waited that long before having
        > them castrated so their urinary tract equipment would mature as
        much
        > as possible. This is important because wethers (neutered male
        goats)
        > can have problems with urinary stones, that can kill them. But for
        > the most part they are very healthy animals. They will live and
        work
        > for 12-15 years. For packgoats you want goats that are big and
        > athletic. Avoid Nubians. They have a reputation for laziness. Mine
        > are Saanen and Oberhasli. Alpines, Toggenburgs, and La Manchas are
        > also popular.
        >
        > They I have had to learn a lot. Behaving on a leash, hopping in and
        > out of the trailer, trail and camp manners, etc. They need a small
        > shed and a pen or pasture with a GOOD fence. Goats are not easy to
        > contain, and they are very vulnerable to predators, especially
        dogs.
        > The more you can take them out to forage the better, but if you
        > don't have the time, hay and a little grain will do. They aren't
        > much trouble to keep, about like dogs. A lot less trouble and
        > expense than horses or mules. They stay right with me while hiking,
        > and just quietly hang around camp. If they start making noise
        > there's something wrong (predators, forest fire, sasquach, UFOs,
        > etc). I don't have to worry about them running off. Sometimes I
        have
        > to zing a pine cone or stick at one when he gets too nosey around
        > the cooking area, tho.
        >
        > I do worry about predators such as mountain lions, coyotes, bears,
        > and wolves. But the boys stay close to me all the time. And if
        > something scares them they come running to me. They are alert in
        the
        > boondocks, and know they are prey. I put up their tarp near my
        > hammock so they bed down close by. Predators here are hunted
        (except
        > for wolves), and are wary of people.
        >
        > I transport them in a funky old trailer made from the bed of a
        > pickup truck, with a camper shell on it. The US Forest Service
        > office in this are has all kinds of strict regulations about using
        > pack animals in the wilderness and surrounding national forest.
        > These regulations are focused on keeping horses and mules from
        > destroying meadows where horse people camp all the time. Horses and
        > mules need grass and daily water, so certain areas tend to get
        > overused by them. With the goats I can camp anywhere, the rougher
        > the better. The forest service people I've run into have reacted in
        > various ways. The trail maintenance crews are glad to see them
        > eating stuff along the trails. The ranger in the pickup thought
        > there should be more of them out in the woods thinning out the
        > zillions of little trees that are growing like grass on the hills.
        > All the brush and little trees make for a lot of forest fire fuel
        > during dry weather. The district administrator didn't even come out
        > of her office to talk to me about it. She just told the
        receptionist
        > to hand me the official policy pamphlet on pack animals, which is
        > written for horses and mules. Typical bureaucracy BS. For anybody
        > who is interested in more packgoat info there's a good book on the
        > subject. "The Packgoat", by John Mionczynzki. There's also a yahoo
        > group (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/packgoat/).
        >
        > We were along the northern edge of the wilderness. The roads into
        > this area are long and rough. The trails are poorly maintained,
        > rocky, and vague in places. This is very rough, remote country and
        > the nearest towns are pretty small and far apart. Civilization is
        > pretty sparse. About the only time many people are around is elk
        > season (Sept-Oct). The rest of the year it's almost empty. We took
        > the trail in from Willow Creek (about 30 miles east from Glenwood)
        > and hiked about 8 miles south and east to Clayton Mesa (near Turkey
        > Feather Pass and the Jerky Mountains). Elevation there is about
        7500
        > ft. We found later that there were lots more elk closer to the
        > trailhead, where the elevation was 8000-9000 ft. We saw elk, wild
        > turkeys, deer, a bear, and a bobcat. Great trip. Going back soon.
        >
        > Thanks for the tips and other hammock forum info.
        >
        >
        >
        > --- In hammockcamping@yahoogroups.com, N Thomas <norvell1@> wrote:
        > >
        > > I am curious as to what supplies you carried for the goats. You
        > mentioned that they foraged, but what type of food or other items
        > did you carry for them? How much weight do you expect them to
        carry
        > when they fully mature? What type of pack/saddle/whatever did you
        > use for them? Did you transport them out there yourself? Any
        > problems from the park people?
        > >
        > > Nice pics. I am in central Texas and goats are a dime a dozen
        > here. I have pondered starting a herd for such activities, but am
        > curious about the overall effort.
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > > ---------------------------------
        > > Pinpoint customers who are looking for what you sell.
        > >
        > > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        > >
        >
      • Steve Bennett
        I remember when they were filming Broke Back Mountain up in Canda that there was an issue with having sheep up on the mountain as there was concern that they
        Message 3 of 17 , Oct 4, 2007
        View Source
        • 0 Attachment
          I remember when they were filming Broke Back Mountain up in Canda
          that there was an issue with having sheep up on the mountain as there
          was concern that they could pass some disease on to the indigenous
          animals in the area.

          I am not sure if they were concerned about direct contact with the
          sheep or wether it was something that was passed through their feces
          but I seem to recall they had to keep the sheep well contained and
          possibly had to clean up after them.

          Have you hear anything about this and do you know if it would also
          apply to goats?

          >
          > --- In hammockcamping@yahoogroups.com, "Jeff Ross"
          > <jlross_tijeras@...> wrote:
          > >
          > > Neither I, nor the goats, carried any food for them. They did carry
          > > a couple liters of water, but they didn't drink it. I did. They
          > > drank from stream crossings. They ate wild forage (pine needles,
          > oak
          > > leaves, twigs, flowers, weeds, etc, etc). They eat a little grass,
          > > but not much. Having had a very good monsoon (rainy season) this
          > > year, the Gila country is lush and green now. The goats really
          > > thrived on this food, and actually gained weight during the trip.
          > > When they are full grown (at about age 3) they will weigh 200-250
          > > lb, and will be able to carry about 40 lb each on a trip like this.
          > > There are several manufacturers of goat packing equipment. They
          > make
          > > little sawbuck pack saddles and panniers. A complete saddle/pannier
          > > combo will cost about $200. The gear they need consists of a tarp,
          > a
          > > leash for each of them, and a first aid kit. They sleep under the
          > > tarp, the leashes allow me to control them when we're near a road
          > or
          > > other hazard, and we share the first aid kit.
          > >
          > > I bought these guys last year in June (for about $70 each), when
          > > they were 3 mo old. At that age they were ready to wean, or switch
          > > from milk to an adult hay/forage diet. I got them from a dairy.
          > Each
          > > year the dairies have lots of little billy goats they just want rid
          > > of. Since then I've taken them camping and hiking a lot. At about 7
          > > months old I had them castrated by the vet. By that time they were
          > > stinking and fighting and I just about couldn't stand them any
          > more.
          > > After their "attitude adjustment" procedure, they quit stinking and
          > > became mellow good natured guys. I waited that long before having
          > > them castrated so their urinary tract equipment would mature as
          > much
          > > as possible. This is important because wethers (neutered male
          > goats)
          > > can have problems with urinary stones, that can kill them. But for
          > > the most part they are very healthy animals. They will live and
          > work
          > > for 12-15 years. For packgoats you want goats that are big and
          > > athletic. Avoid Nubians. They have a reputation for laziness. Mine
          > > are Saanen and Oberhasli. Alpines, Toggenburgs, and La Manchas are
          > > also popular.
          > >
          > > They I have had to learn a lot. Behaving on a leash, hopping in and
          > > out of the trailer, trail and camp manners, etc. They need a small
          > > shed and a pen or pasture with a GOOD fence. Goats are not easy to
          > > contain, and they are very vulnerable to predators, especially
          > dogs.
          > > The more you can take them out to forage the better, but if you
          > > don't have the time, hay and a little grain will do. They aren't
          > > much trouble to keep, about like dogs. A lot less trouble and
          > > expense than horses or mules. They stay right with me while hiking,
          > > and just quietly hang around camp. If they start making noise
          > > there's something wrong (predators, forest fire, sasquach, UFOs,
          > > etc). I don't have to worry about them running off. Sometimes I
          > have
          > > to zing a pine cone or stick at one when he gets too nosey around
          > > the cooking area, tho.
          > >
          > > I do worry about predators such as mountain lions, coyotes, bears,
          > > and wolves. But the boys stay close to me all the time. And if
          > > something scares them they come running to me. They are alert in
          > the
          > > boondocks, and know they are prey. I put up their tarp near my
          > > hammock so they bed down close by. Predators here are hunted
          > (except
          > > for wolves), and are wary of people.
          > >
          > > I transport them in a funky old trailer made from the bed of a
          > > pickup truck, with a camper shell on it. The US Forest Service
          > > office in this are has all kinds of strict regulations about using
          > > pack animals in the wilderness and surrounding national forest.
          > > These regulations are focused on keeping horses and mules from
          > > destroying meadows where horse people camp all the time. Horses and
          > > mules need grass and daily water, so certain areas tend to get
          > > overused by them. With the goats I can camp anywhere, the rougher
          > > the better. The forest service people I've run into have reacted in
          > > various ways. The trail maintenance crews are glad to see them
          > > eating stuff along the trails. The ranger in the pickup thought
          > > there should be more of them out in the woods thinning out the
          > > zillions of little trees that are growing like grass on the hills.
          > > All the brush and little trees make for a lot of forest fire fuel
          > > during dry weather. The district administrator didn't even come out
          > > of her office to talk to me about it. She just told the
          > receptionist
          > > to hand me the official policy pamphlet on pack animals, which is
          > > written for horses and mules. Typical bureaucracy BS. For anybody
          > > who is interested in more packgoat info there's a good book on the
          > > subject. "The Packgoat", by John Mionczynzki. There's also a yahoo
          > > group (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/packgoat/).
          > >
          > > We were along the northern edge of the wilderness. The roads into
          > > this area are long and rough. The trails are poorly maintained,
          > > rocky, and vague in places. This is very rough, remote country and
          > > the nearest towns are pretty small and far apart. Civilization is
          > > pretty sparse. About the only time many people are around is elk
          > > season (Sept-Oct). The rest of the year it's almost empty. We took
          > > the trail in from Willow Creek (about 30 miles east from Glenwood)
          > > and hiked about 8 miles south and east to Clayton Mesa (near Turkey
          > > Feather Pass and the Jerky Mountains). Elevation there is about
          > 7500
          > > ft. We found later that there were lots more elk closer to the
          > > trailhead, where the elevation was 8000-9000 ft. We saw elk, wild
          > > turkeys, deer, a bear, and a bobcat. Great trip. Going back soon.
          > >
          > > Thanks for the tips and other hammock forum info.
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > > --- In hammockcamping@yahoogroups.com, N Thomas <norvell1@> wrote:
          > > >
          > > > I am curious as to what supplies you carried for the goats. You
          > > mentioned that they foraged, but what type of food or other items
          > > did you carry for them? How much weight do you expect them to
          > carry
          > > when they fully mature? What type of pack/saddle/whatever did you
          > > use for them? Did you transport them out there yourself? Any
          > > problems from the park people?
          > > >
          > > > Nice pics. I am in central Texas and goats are a dime a dozen
          > > here. I have pondered starting a herd for such activities, but am
          > > curious about the overall effort.
          > > >
          > > >
          > > >
          > > >
          > > > ---------------------------------
          > > > Pinpoint customers who are looking for what you sell.
          > > >
          > > > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          > > >
          > >
          >
          >
          >
        • Rat
          ... carry ... Hey Jeff, good to see another Goat Packer on the hammock forums. I have used goats as pack animals for years hunting Elk in Colorado. I have a
          Message 4 of 17 , Oct 16, 2007
          View Source
          • 0 Attachment
            --- In hammockcamping@yahoogroups.com, "Jeff Ross"
            <jlross_tijeras@...> wrote:
            >
            > Neither I, nor the goats, carried any food for them. They did
            carry
            > a couple liters of water,

            Hey Jeff, good to see another Goat Packer on the hammock forums. I
            have used goats as pack animals for years hunting Elk in Colorado. I
            have a brother and sister pair of Nubians, tweedle-dee and tweedle-
            dum, dum is a wether but not dehorned. They are getting a little
            long in the tooth now, over ten years old, but still going strong.
            They live in Colorado with a friend of mine, who I hunt with, he
            gets a lot more use out of them then I would in Texas. They have
            kived with him for several years now.

            I have never had any issues with mine being lazy, but I have heard
            of it as well with Nubians. I bought mine from a ranch that
            specializes in packgoats tho. They can be loud tho, Nubians are very
            vocal, especially if I leave them at camp for a hunt.

            I always pitch their tarp close to me so they can get under the
            hammock if they want to. Several nights they have woke me up kinda
            freaked out. I found bear tracks the next morning one time, but
            nothing on the others, I figured it was some predator out and about,
            but we have always been safe.

            I don't know if you have ever packed out Elk meat before, if you
            have then you know how hard it is, the endless trips back to the
            forest service road. That is where your kids will shine for ya, I
            can't tell you how much of a difference it makes.

            I will proly start looking for a new pair when I get home in Nov.
            Maybe some Toggs this time. My kids are only about 210 pounds, but
            they can carry 40-50 pounds all day with judicious rest stops. They
            rarely do, unless we get an Elk.

            One of these days I need to get back into Gila, I practically grew
            up there, but haven't been back since high school.

            Sounds like you are learning hammocking and goat packing at the same
            time. Sounds like fun:) Just wait until they learn to untie the
            panier straps!

            Rat
          • Jeff Ross
            Hi Rat. So far I ve had no predator problems except domestic dogs on the trails. I had to bash one with my walking stick (a good reason to carry a real stick,
            Message 5 of 17 , Oct 16, 2007
            View Source
            • 0 Attachment
              Hi Rat. So far I've had no predator problems except domestic dogs on
              the trails. I had to bash one with my walking stick (a good reason to
              carry a real stick, not a fancy aluminum one). I worry more about
              wolves than anything in the Gila country. They aren't afraid of
              people, will attack dogs, and my goats would be very attractive to
              them. Mountain lions are also a concern, but they avoid people.

              If you decide to get new packgoats here's a link to a lady in CO who
              raises and sells packgoats. She knows her stuff and her animals are
              first rate.

              http://huffakerfarms.homestead.com/soap2.html
            Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.