Welcome to our ranch near Canada's west coast in Beautiful British Columbia's West Chilcotin mountain region. Where calling the vet means hollering back at the house to bring your kit, new friendships are formed from the back of a horse and true fun for a five year old is getting a machete for Christmas. Where 'cutting the dinks off' has a totally different meaning than what first comes to mind, Muck Boots are a household name, a hand shake still means something and the coffee is always on.

Friday, 21 August 2015

Ilgatchuz Trails

Greetings all!
Well, we are back once again, and once again, it was a wonderful trip in to our amazing piece of truly beautiful British Columbia.
This was my first full trip in to the Ilgatchuz Range for more years than I'm going to admit to.  And it was even more spectacular than I remember.  
There will be plenty of stories to tell over the winter about our mountain trips, but for tonight I'm going to keep it simple and just take you on a bit of a photo journey.  I do have a post started on the food we take and the packing process, but somehow all my photos are pack trains and mountain views so we will have to go with that for now..... 


 This little bachelor group of caribou put on quite a show for us as we reached High Camp the 2nd night.  Although it looks really wet in this photo, the rain came and went quickly.   

Happy ponies at High Camp, looking back towards the Itcha Mountain Range.  

Pink sky at night, trail riders delight!  

Day Ride, day 3.  High Camp is down in the far right corner of the photo.  You can see that Dealer is still keeping a close eye on his human!   

From the top, looking in to Moose Haven Valley.  In general, we try and move camp every second day.  So much more relaxing (for everyone!) and gives us plenty of time to enjoy the sights.  

Putting the horses out to feed at the Moose Haven Camp on Pan Creek.  We picket three of the lead mares.  This means they are put on a thirty foot rope staked to the ground.  The rest are 'hobbled', meaning their front legs are tied together (about a foot apart actually).  And don't let that fool you!  They get along on their hobbles just fine!  In fact, it hardly slows them at all.  Generally the picket horses are out to feed right from the time we get to camp.  The hobbled horses go out for about three hours in the evening and three hours in the morning.  They are watched carefully though, as it only takes one troublemaker with a bad idea and they can disappear quickly, heading for home.  They were pretty good this trip, only half-heartedly attempting to leave once.      

 One of my favorite photos of the trip.  This is a totally unstaged photo of the wrangler (aka "Mountain Man") catching up on some sleep (the horses are let go at 4am on moving days).  The ridge I took the previous photos from (looking in to Moose Haven) is directly across from him.  

Riding the eskers in Moose Haven.  We had some great 'horsemanship' discussions on this trip.  Nothing I enjoy more than chatting about horses, and what a perfect setting!      

Ah, now we have headed north and are having lunch before dropping down in to Pan Valley (Carnlick Creek).  It had started out raining in the morning but thankfully cleared early and we had a wonderful ride across the alpine.    

Prince George is strutting her stuff with her hobbles as she moves through camp to better feed.  Grass is always greener on the other side you know...... 
(Yes, I know, I know.  We have weird horse names.  She is a mare.  And her name is Prince George.  Ask me later....)

On the Blue Canyon day ride.  Pan Valley on the left and Blue Canyon on the right.  It's enough to take your breath away.  

Best restaurant around!  Moving to the top end of Pan Valley to Rogers Camp.    

Morning Mist.

After lunch nap, with the majestic Pipe Organ Mountain to watch over us.  

My pack string is still puffing a bit from their climb up the Pass.  That is my 'city boy' Kenny in the front.....you might remember from earlier posts that I traded him for a Haflinger pony this spring.  He's probably feeling like he got the short end of the stick!  

Onwards to the wild blue yonder......

Take care all!


Lori Storey said...

Beautiful country, very envious ,my husband has has helped guide thru there,but I've. Ever had the chance. Safe trails

Terra Hatch said...

There is always next year Lori! :) We are headed in to the Itcha Mountain Range again tomorrow, for a week. Ladies Only.....