The squeak of the saddle accompanied by wild bird calls and a clip-clopping beat of hooves on stone provides an impromptu wilderness symphony. Trees, berries and wildflowers in a variety of sizes and colors pass by at the speed of a walking horse. Animal sightings add further interest and sometimes excitement. Even better, when horse camping no trailer ride home waits at the end of the trail.

For those who own their own horses, horse Best Time To Go Annapurna Base Camp requires a few supplies and a destination. For those who don’t, a reputable pack outfitter is the best way to go.

Bringing Your Own Horse Camping

A reasonably well trained and well behaved horse certainly makes a camping trip far more pleasant than trying to camp with an untrained or unruly horse. What to do with the horses overnight is probably the biggest concern. A few camps have corrals, which solve that problem, but most do not.

If the horse stands quietly while tied for hours on end, tying to the trailer works fine. Of course, some horses don’t tether well. A highline gives the horse a little more movement. Some camps have highline poles. If not, tie a line between two trees. Use a treesaver strap rather than tying the rope directly to the tree to prevent damage. A ring on the highline rope slides back and forth easily, giving a single horse freedom of movement from one end of the highline to the other. Multiple horses on the same line need stationary ties to keep them separated. Tie the horse short enough to prevent tangling its feet in the rope.

Portable fences come in many different shapes and sizes for those who prefer not to tie the horse overnight. Some frequent campers have attachments on the sides of their trailers to carry panel fences they can assemble at the trailhead. Portable electric fences make an easier option for everyone else. Many varieties of portable fence kits are available from horse supply catalogs or websites. You can also make your own with temporary fence posts, electric fence wire, and a battery operated or solar portable charger. The type where the charger is attached to a self-grounding pole are the easiest and most portable as you have no need to use a separate ground rod.

When weather could be a concern, a good waterproof blanket is a must. Fly masks and spray also help keep the horse comfortable. Provide plenty of feed for hard-working horses. Most areas allow hay, but when venturing into the wilderness pellets may be required to prevent non-native seeds from entering the area. Saddlebags are a great addition to the usual tack for bringing lunches and water bottles along on rides.

A base camp at the trailhead with day rides into the surrounding trails means whatever fits in the truck and trailer is fair game to bring. Taking a traveling camp on a longer trail seriously limits the options of things to bring, and usually requires a packhorse or mule to help carry supplies. Most people prefer to stick with the base camp, especially when camping with their own horses rather than a professional outfitter.

The riders need somewhere to sleep, whether that is a tent, canopy, camper, or motorhome. Depending on the chosen shelter, pack the necessary supplies. Bring the appropriate bedding, clothes for riding and for camp, food, dishes, rain gear, and whatever else each individual needs. Some camps have restroom and shower facilities, others have nothing at all. Make sure you know ahead of time if you have to supply your own water. Research the place you plan to go ahead of time so you know exactly what it does or does not include.

A propane or butane stove, or Dutch ovens provide cooking options for those without campers or motorhomes. Campfires may or may not be allowed depending on the season, fire danger, and area where camping.

Oregon has several state parks that allow horse camping. Nehalem Bay is quite nice and even has corrals. Some DNR trailheads allow camping with horses, such as Les Hilde in Washington State. Google searches that bring up a lot of options for places to camp include horse camping, camping with horses, state park horse camps, and DNR horse camps. Mentioning a specific state in your Google search helps if that state has the facilities you are looking for, and brings up all sorts of odd things if it doesn’t.