Marking a Trail When Horse Packing

Marking a trail to pack out your elk I have known individuals who could not find and pack out their downed elk because they didn’t mark the trail adequately when they went back to camp for the pack horses. When marking the trail out - mark a trail that a horse can use. and clear it the best you can on the way out.

It ismuch easier to thoroughly clear the trail on the way out than when you are returning with your pack horses. Take as much time as necessary to remove large branches, role logs off your makeshift trail and move large rocks that will cause problems.

It is best to place your marking tape strips higher and a little long so you can easily see them. As you are marking the trail always look behind you to see how well you can see the marking tape. Remark trail as necessary.

If you don't have marking tape mark the trail the best you can. Pile up rocks or branches at key junctures. Break limbs along the route. If you are having difficulty marking the trail take off your T shirt and cut it into pieces and make it into pieces.

When I am marking and clearing a trail I invariably find bee nests. One time I overturned a log on the trail that had at least a 1,000 bees visible. I ran like hell and I still got stung. You and your horses need to stay away from bees. You haven't seen a rodeo until you see bees stinging horses and it is very dangerous. A horse will run over you if you are in his way.

YELLOW JACKETS. When loading your elk meat on your pack horse in the early fall you will always have yellow jackets around the carcass. You don't want to be around a horse being stung by bees. Additionally, the horse won't be around very long. I tie my horses about 40-50 feet from the carcass and meat bags to help prevent bees from stinging my horses. I don't mind carrying elk quarters 40-50 feet to prevent a rodeo or injury to my horses.

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