Research your Backcountry Horse Trips
You're dreaming of roaming the wilderness with your pony, riding through majestic mountains and camping in lush pastures miles away from e-mail, text messages etc.
You're conditioning your horse and looking up gear lists, tips for packing on a horse, and how to high-line without leaving a trace. But, before one hoof gets stepped on the backcountry trail you need to do some serious research about the route you're planning on riding. You need to know about terrain, footing, current conditions, and "no way in hell" spots to name a few.
The point is to help you route-find/research your backcountry horse camping trip ahead of time so it's epic for the right reasons. The main point of your research is to make sure that you know as much as you can about the trail/route before you actually take your beloved equine.
The overarching question is whether the trail can be done safely with your horse.
"No way in hell" spots:
You hear of a great trail, and the first thing you do is try and figure out if there are any impassable/dangerous spots. Research Youtube videos and any information you can find - it's not worth it if you get a lump in your stomach just watching somebody's ride.
Is it super rocky, slick, rutted out etc? Descriptions or pictures can advise you about the need for boots/shoes for your horse, too.
Current trail conditions:
Even the perfect horse trail can be unsafe if current conditions aren't right. High altitude areas may still have snow into July, downed trees and swollen rivers can also ruin a trip. Facebook trail groups, and park rangers/forest service and other agency folks often have up to date information.
Needed info for so many reasons. Watering the horses (and yourself), understanding where water crossings occur (and how deep/swift they are) and planing camping spots that will make your life easier.
Do you have any tips or tricks you absolutely follow to have a great riding trip? Feel free to email us about it. Found it useful or fun? Share it via the buttons below. Happy trails :)