WHAT DO YOU PROVIDE?
These trips are fully outfitted, which means we provide everything except your sleeping bag and gear. We have excellent mountain quarter horses for your mode of travel, and pack-mules that carry the gear. Our professional, experienced guides and crew will do their best to provide you a safe and memorable experience. Each camp is set up in a picturesque setting by a stream or river with private tents that sleep from 1-4 guests. There is a latrine with private enclosure set up off of camp. A portable solar shower or warm water from the stove is provided for bathing although some enjoy the cool mountain water! Meals are fresh and home-cooked, no freeze dried food! Expect to be surprised. We also include meals and lodging the night before and the night after your trip at no extra charge.
WHAT DO I NEED TO BRING?
All of your personal belongings should fit in one duffel bag, and weigh no more than 45 lbs. You will need a four-season sleeping bag for moderate to freezing temperatures (they don't tend to be as warm as they rate them) which can be packed separately. We recommend a Thermarest or good mattress pad, however, we can provide one if you are unable. You will also need to bring good raingear, either a two-piece set or a good riding slicker. If you are a fisherman, you will need to bring your rod and gear. DOWNLOADABLE PACKING LIST
WHEN IS THE BEST TIME OF THE YEAR TO COME and WHAT IS THE WEATHER LIKE?
The weather in Montana is as varied as its landscape. Summer days are often pleasant and dry and evenings are crisp and cool. Late June and early July are when the wildflowers really explode. The average temp is 70's to low 80's during the day, cooling at to 40-50's at night. Mid July to late August are probably the most popular time, so that space fills quickly. This is the warmest time, 75-85 during the day, cooling to 40-50's at night. August is always a nice month for long clear days. By late August, and into September, the fall colors begin. The days are warm, 65-70's and evenings are cooler, upper 30's to 40's.
WHAT IF IT RAINS?
While we always hope for a dry trip, it does rain sometimes! With good rain gear, you can stay dry and even enjoy the ride. Each camp has a kitchen tent with wood stove to get in from the weather, and the tents are waterproof. Typical mountain showers occur in the afternoon, and usually clear by morning.
WHAT KIND OF RIDING EXPERIENCE DO I NEED TO HAVE?
For most trips, you should be an intermediate to advanced rider with trail riding experience. We will fit you to your horse and saddle at the ranch before your trip, and spend time teaching western horsemanship at the ranch and on the trail. Our goal is build confidence in you as a rider so that you may comfortably enjoy the beauty of the area. Chinese Wall trips are more aggressive with longer days in the saddle so you also need to be in good physical condition.
DO WE RIDE EVERY DAY?
Each trip offered is unique and ranges from base-camp oriented, where you stay in one camp and take day rides, fish, sight see, relax etc., or trips that traverse the wilderness, moving every other day. At a base camp, you decide how much you want to ride, although the only way to camp is by horse. On moving trips, you can day ride on layover days if you like. There’s so much country to see!
WHAT’S THE FISHING LIKE?
Pristine creeks and rivers, as well as some high mountain lakes provide an excellent opportunity for trout fishing. Rainbow, Brown, Cutthroat & Brook trout plus Artic Grayling all inhabit the Sun River drainages. Average size caught is 14 inches. You can learn fly-fishing techniques at the ranch on our private trout ponds before venturing out on the river or use spin casting equipment. There are several experienced guides to show you the ropes.
Fishing Licenses: If you plan on fishing, you will need to purchase a fishing license from the Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks. You may obtain fishing licenses online from the Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks.
WHERE IS THE TRAILHEAD?
We are very fortunate that our Ranch is located near the trail head, so we do not have to truck horses, or put you up in a motel. Guests arrive at the Ranch in the late afternoon on the day before your trip in time for dinner. After dinner, we fit you to your horse and saddle, and have a horsemanship/safety session. You will stay in lodge rooms, and after a hearty breakfast, you adventure will begin! On the last day of your trip, you will arrive at the Ranch in the mid afternoon (that shower feels so good), have dinner, (tell stories) and depart after breakfast the next day.