Home > Dispatches > Daily Dispatches 2019 >Daily Dispatch #169

June 20, 2019: Encampment Pack Trip Day #3 – Commissary Park

It’s the summer solstice. I’ll bet that my Alaskan friends are partying hearty. However, it’s quiet here in Colorado, in the Routt National Forest. Yes, today we crossed the boundary; we were in southern Wyoming and are now in northern Colorado. I would like to keep going, and head to Steamboat Springs – this was the original plan – but Pete says that because of high snowpack and perhaps an overabundance of deadfall, that the route would be too difficult to travel. Grr, grr, grr.

We’re staying in a horse camp tonight. I designated it as such because there is an old wooden, and very dilapidated corral to the right of our site. It’s too bad that it has not been maintained; otherwise, it would be ideal for our three, who are now

Road Closed by beetle kill dead fall
Road Closed by beetle kill dead fall

highlined. Highlining isn’t so bad if they’ve been moving. Otherwise, it is less than desirable.

We tied Hrimmi to one of the rails and she pulled it off. We were eating lunch in the vicinity of all the horses when this happened. Fortunately, she did not spook.

It was an excellent riding day, not in the sense of getting from Point A to Point B, but rather in the sense of experiencing vastly different landscapes.

Britt put in an appearance this morning and talked to Pete while we were packing. Quietude returned at 11 a.m. when we set out on the day’s ride. We started out down road, took a gravel road to where we now are. The plan, after lunch, was to take a trail to the Encampment River, and in doing a loop, return to our first campsite. It was here that we hit our first dead end. We crossed a marshy area (my heart was in my throat) then came to the fast moving and deep Encampment River. We decided to forego continuing on this route because the dog would not be able to cross.

We returned to our near starting point and then took another, more uphill trail. There was an upside down sign that read Road Closed. Beyond it was deadfall as far as the eye could see– I did an exploratory hike and upon coming back said that we could go no further. The Forest Service, obviously due to lack of funding, seems to abandoned the road. Grr, grr, grr.

So, back to the drawing board we went. I checked out a campground site – problem was, the bridge gate was closed and there was no way to get around it. And that which we could reach was deemed unsuitable by Pete who rightly said there was no place to highline. So, we returned here to Commissary Park.

It’s overcast. It feels like it’s going to rain. We grazed the horses on the very sparse grass before tying them to the highline. Hrimmi is in the middle – the other two are partially under trees. I wish we had the rain blankets.

Tomorrow we’ll return, via our original route, back to Encampment. Well, our first pack trip is going to be shorter than expected. But we are doing well, as are the horses and the dog, and this is the most important thing of all.

Next: 170. 6/21/19 :Packing Trip, Day # 3 – To Light a Fire

Horse Care Home About Us Dispatches Trips Alys's Articles