Monday, July 25, 2016

Chilcotin Holidays

Packing a horse

To go on a pack trip by horse or hiking, we need to use one or two packhorses to transport the food, sleeping bags and some clothes.

To pack a horse, we first put a pack saddle on the back of the horse. We fit this saddle like a normal riding saddle. However, we place two blankets on the back of the horse and then the saddle. Between the saddle and the withers there needs to be a space approximately the size of a fist.

At the ranch, we have two different types of pack saddle; wooden saw bucks and plastic deckers. They are are used depending on the size and shape of the horse and also depends on what you want to pack.

Wood saddles are used on slim horses and the plastic saddles are used on round or big horses.

When the saddle is cinched, we tie the cinch at least 3 times because once the boxes and all the packed stuff are on, it’s impossible to move anymore. To hold the pack boxes we use the basket sling. There is also another technique called a barrel sling which is used to pack softer and undefined shape objects like duffle bags, foamies, horse food bags, etc…

Three duffle bags can fit on top of the boxes, one on each side and one in the middle. If we want to pack something else other than duffles, like a chainsaw, a shovel or propane tank, we put only two duffles and the something else in the middle. After that you tie the rope very strongly and do a knot.

We place a tarp on top of the duffles to protect them from the rain and also from the branches that your pack horse might go through so it doesn’t rip the duffles, but the tarp.

The second part of the packing is done with the diamond hitch. This second fixing method is to stabilize the whole pack better. To do this hitch you use a diamond cinch and we do the ¾ diamond hitch. It goes over the tarp and the duffles and around the boxes again and then it is tied very tightly.

When this is done, you put a nose basket on the horse so he doesn’t stop every minute to eat and then you are ready to go on a new 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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