Sunday, November 8, 2015

Chilcotin Holidays

Lea's Guide Story - Spruce Lake and Leckie Camp

Lea's Story of how she learnt to become a guide.


My name is Lea and I am from Germany. I study in Denmark near the border and am doing a university internship at the ranch. I came to Chilcotin Holidays to improve my business skills and to learn how to become a guide.
In the end of September I went on my first pack trip – I got the wonderful opportunity to take part in a 4 Day Pack Trip. Together with two other guides, I took care of 10 horses and 5 guests, and explained to them how to saddle, put the bridle on and how to get on and off a horse. I also explained what to do when for example riding downhill or uphill, which is necessary as well, to avoid dangerous situations.
The first day, the guests arrived at the ranch and we showed them their horses and fitted the saddles. Moreover, we had to shoe some horses which should take part in the trip.

Early in the next morning, we met at the barn to get the horses ready and pack the pack horses. During my trip I learned a lot about how to pack a horse and what is important to pay attention to. As for instance that the pack boxes weight equally and that nothing can hurt the horse while moving.
On that first day “on the road”, we rode approximately 9 hours out to Spruce Lake, moving higher and higher with every step the horses took. 


It is amazing how sure-footed the Mountain horses are, they can take you up and down on nearly each trail. Finally, we arrived at the camp, where we moved our duffels and saddle bags into our tents and started the little ovens to heat up for the night. 



While some of the guests were out with the two other guides to stake the horses, the rest of us prepared dinner for everybody in the cabin.
It was my first time to cook on a propane oven, but it went well. After dinner, all of us were very tired and went to bed. I was happy my first day had been god, and that I was on my way to become a guide in the wilderness!

The next day me and Marie went up to Windy Pass together with three of our guests. We rode approximately 2 hours, surmounting 600 elevation gain with our horses. We rode on small forest trails, crossing rivers and meadows. Indian summer is coming to British Columbia, colouring all trees and bushed in a light yellow colour. 


Up at the pass, we spotted a Mountain Goat and some mule deer. 


After having enjoyed the view at the top of the world, we walked our horses down to a meadow to take a break and eat our pack lunches. 

One of the horses, Mowson, was very busy to find out about the contents of our lunch bags, trying to get a piece of fruit or a cookie. In the evening we arrived back at camp, where we had some delicious hamburger.

On the 3rd day, we got the horses early from the meadows where they grazed at night, to get them ready for the ride to the next camp, Leckie Camp. 


We packed our duffels and packed the pack horses. On our way, we stopped for lunch at Cowboy Camp, exploring the old cabin and the surroundings. After that, we continued our way downhill and went to the Leckie Falls. 


The view was awesome and we took a lot of pictures of the water fall and the mountains. Getting back in the saddle, we rode to camp, where we feed the horses and put them into the corral where they stayed over night. We cooked some hot dogs over the camp fire, as the night was clear and it was unnecessary to use the stove in the cabin. Before it was getting dark, we went down to the river to get water for the night and the next morning.

During the night, a lot of rain came down and we were unable to cross the river the next morning, as it originally was planned. The next morning, we showed our guests how to saddle and pack the horses and while everybody worked together, we were soon able to departure. We put all our rain gear and warm clothes on and got back in the saddle to finish the last 6 hours to the ranch. On the way home, we could feel that the horses wanted to go home as well, as they were walking fast. When we arrived at the ranch, we unsaddled the horses and let them into the corral to their friends, where they enjoyed their well – deserved hay. We unpacked the duffels and pack boxes and enjoyed a warm and hot shower after the rainy day. I'm really glad that I did it, and I loved learning how to become a guide for real. I am excited about my next adventure

Chilcotin Holidays

About Chilcotin Holidays

We are a licensed guide outfitter and we conduct guided wilderness adventures throughout our 5,000 square km operating area. This guide area has been operational since 1880, making it the oldest in British Columbia. More about us HERE.

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