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4 day Saddle trip through High Sierras - help!
Old 08-08-2007, 03:06 PM   #1
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4 day Saddle trip through High Sierras - help!

Al's post on "Help me pack" got me thinking...we (BF and I) have an upcoming trip with my parents and brother and SIL. (gasp! Ugh! Cool!) FOUR days of pack muling through the Yosemite area. Other than the blatantly obvious stuff to bring (a pack list was sent out) - what might you suggest?

Anyone taken one of these trips?

Also, pray for my dear BF - he spent ONE long lunch with my mother and grandmother last June here in NYC. That is the only contact/experience with my family (we have been dating for a little over a year and a half) While I do not anticipate any bona fide problems, I find myself getting a bit stressed over the upcoming scenario. If I were to spend nearly a week with his family, I'd probably be a little weird too - even though I like them!

BF and I are taking a 3 day trip to Reno once we get back to Sacramento - to recover from the mule trip!

- Trying to refrain from freakin' out
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Old 08-08-2007, 03:32 PM   #2
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Old 08-08-2007, 03:42 PM   #3
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Never mind ass-prin, more like Vicodin and lots of it ...

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Old 08-08-2007, 03:44 PM   #4
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Old 08-08-2007, 05:06 PM   #5
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Those little airline bottles of tequila / whiskey can make a slow trip
go by faster.

If you do not backpack / hike much, my female friends swear by :
Guides Choice Equipment and Clothing
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Old 08-08-2007, 05:19 PM   #6
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Toilet Paper and baby wipes
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Old 08-08-2007, 06:04 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fireup2025 View Post
Al's post on "Help me pack" got me thinking...we (BF and I) have an upcoming trip with my parents and brother and SIL. (gasp! Ugh! Cool!) FOUR days of pack muling through the Yosemite area. Other than the blatantly obvious stuff to bring (a pack list was sent out) - what might you suggest?
Anyone taken one of these trips?
Also, pray for my dear BF - he spent ONE long lunch with my mother and grandmother last June here in NYC. That is the only contact/experience with my family (we have been dating for a little over a year and a half) While I do not anticipate any bona fide problems, I find myself getting a bit stressed over the upcoming scenario. If I were to spend nearly a week with his family, I'd probably be a little weird too - even though I like them!
I like your BF a lot and he probably has endless patience borne from his IT experience... but ye gods are you testing the strength of your relationship!

Have you been able to do any riding to toughen up your adductors?

Riding breeches-- the seam on the inside of the legs of jeans (riding against the saddle) can abrade your thighs all the way to your pelvic bone. If breeches won't work for the trip then moleskin & Vaseline, perhaps even duct tape to keep things sliding instead of rubbing.

Does Yosemite have any poison ivy or poison sumac needing Calamine lotion?

SPF45 waterproof/sweatproof sunscreen (like No-Ad brand), aloe, and lots of lip balm.
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Old 08-09-2007, 07:52 AM   #8
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BF and SIL are both children of suburbia, so watching them on horseback muleback should be interesting. BF at least had an uncle with a horse farm in NJ that he used to spend lots of time at (and on horses so he claims)

Can't justify the expense of riding breeches for the trip

Just praying my father refrains from the "your intentions with my daughter??" interrogation!!!

To repeat part of my question in the OP, has anyone else taken one of these trips?
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Old 08-09-2007, 08:02 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CyclingInvestor View Post
Those little airline bottles of tequila / whiskey can make a slow trip
go by faster.
I am seriously considering getting flasks, filling them up, and taking along! Maybe a wine pouch too! What is the official name for the leather pouch/bladders that you can hang over your shoulder and drink from? Typically "leather"?

Quote:
Originally Posted by CyclingInvestor View Post
If you do not backpack / hike much, my female friends swear by :
Guides Choice Equipment and Clothing

I find it much easier to just "cop a squat in the woods"
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Old 08-09-2007, 10:37 AM   #10
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What is the official name for the leather pouch/bladders that you can hang over your shoulder and drink from? Typically "leather"?
Bota bags.

Probably made out of mule hide...
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Old 08-09-2007, 10:44 AM   #11
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We did a week long working ranch/dude ranch deal in Montana about four years ago. It was trail rides every day, but not ALL day-every day.

I don't think you can prepare your butt and legs because nothing else is like it enough to work. I grew up around horses. Still, getting back on after years away is like a new pair of heavy boots: you get sore spots and blisters before you get calluses. And no 4-day or 7-day trip gets past the "it hurts" stage. Plan for treating it and minimizing it.

One thing our hosts suggested and it helped a lot was not to be reluctant to get off the horse and lead it along the trail now and then. That eases your back, legs and butt. Another is to get off and do that before a beginning bit of soreness becomes something worse. Ride till you're tired of riding. Then walk till you're tired of walking.

Good, wide brim hats and sunscreen are utterly essential. Cowboy hats evolved for good reason, way before baseball caps.

Long sleeved shirts are inportant too. They protect from the sun and from horse and deer flies.

Take a neck scarf. Looks cool for one thing. Another is it can cover you nose and mouth (bandit-style) if you're last in the line and going into the dust without enough breeze to do anything but be stuck in the cloud.

A pair of leather gloves is good too. It's real easy for city folks to grab onto a thorn bush unknowingly, or have a snatched rope or a rein burn through a bare hand.

They'll probably make you wear boots with heels for safety. Tennis shoes can slip through the stirrup and that's a disaster if you come off the animal like that. My wife got some lace-up "riders", or some such, and they were fine. They weren't so "cowboy" that she couldn't wear them afterward too.

Make sure you have a pair of light "camp" shoes packed too. Moccasins or sneakers are fine. But it is sooooo nice to set those piggies free once you get to the campsite and put on something light. And when you have to go pee at 0300 you don't want to be struggling with the boots. If you use the boots for those trips though - just skip the sox. Much easier.

Last, I guess I'd go light on the night's party beverages. I'm sure there's worse things than be bad hung over on horseback. Not many come to mind though.

CORRECTION: Looks like the boots my wife got are called "packers" and look like these: Abilene Ladies Packer Boot in Dirty Brown with R Toe - Western Boots and western apparel: Bootcity.com
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Old 08-09-2007, 11:27 AM   #12
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I would second the idea of leather gloves. I also recommend a headlamp-like a Pezel or something. Very handy at camp.
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Old 08-09-2007, 01:48 PM   #13
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Sierra Trading Post, a mailorder/web store, has closeouts and factory seconds at much better prices than retail. They do have some Western boots and clothes. On your broad brimmed hat, it needs an adjustable chin strap for windy conditions. Bring a ball cap for backup or for wearing under your rain jacket hood. Your long sleeve shirt needs a collar, a button/snap front, and roll up sleeves. Wear a sports bra so you can open your shirt front during the hottest part of the day. Buy and break in your boots NOW. You will need to walk comfortably in them. The packer boots are laced riding boots, not pull on, that is a good idea. Some of them cover just past the top of the ankle, so they are suitable for snow wear, later. Take ibuprofen morning and evening with meals to have the anti-inflammatory in your system before your muscles and joints get so sore. Don't wait until the morning of Day Two to start. My wife uses a muscle relaxer as a sleep aid, but she has to take it early in the evening when we are on a get up at daylight, go to bed at dark schedule. The time zone difference may help you on that. Instead of a lot of extra clothing, take camp clothes that serve both as pajamas and warm underware. For outer wear, have one spare set, and take a small quantity of liquid detergent to wash the dirty set in a bucket in camp. Depending on the cotton content, they will dry before you need them in 36 hours. Dispose of the wash water far from streams. The gloves are also important on preventing sun burn on the exposed backs of hands.
Can you go ride somewhere now? Ride for hours to teach your body what to expect, then sleep on your camp pad on the carpet, without a relaxing tub soak.
I question your Dad's motives on inviting your BF on that type of trip without any warmup trips.
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Old 08-09-2007, 02:29 PM   #14
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Wow - you guys are really freaking me out. Parents went last year, had a blast - they have mentioned nothing along these lines (as far as pain and suffering or any extreme weather)
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Old 08-09-2007, 03:33 PM   #15
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I didn't mean to make it a horror story.

It's not. We loved it. Fact is we'd do it more but tired of just doing plodding, single file, trail lines over and over and over. Four days, though, in beautiful country.... wow. Hard to beat.

But if you are riding 3+ hours a day you are going to be rubbing some places that just aren't used to it. I'm talking tired discomfort - not agony. Like "Oh my aching butt!" as you hobble over to the camp fire and sit down gingerly to stretch out the kinks.

The worst will probably be settling into that saddle on the morning of about day three.
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Old 09-04-2007, 02:06 PM   #16
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Made it back! Everyone should have an experience like this! I'll post a few pics in the next couple days...had a wonderful time. High Camps of Yosemite are fabulous - wonderful food, fantastic scenery...knees were a bit painful and the 2nd day my "sit bones" were tender, but that quickly wore off. One of the staff members was going to Burning Man the same day we left Yosemite (had the stereotypical BM "look") My BF survived trip as well Sacramento/NoCal is as hot and dusty and dry as ever (no question in my mind why I live here (NJ) these days) - fortunately parents have a pool! Lost my "allowance" in Reno, but we had a blast at the rib festival and casinos anyway Golfed at Squaw Valley - stalked a coyote on the course who was stalking squirrels...was just a great trip! Still happy to be home.
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Old 09-04-2007, 11:43 PM   #17
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Made it back! Everyone should have an experience like this! I'll post a few pics in the next couple days...had a wonderful time.
Good to hear that everyone's relationships survived being so close together!
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