1. PRE-TRIP CONDITIONING:
It's a good idea to condition
both your animals and yourselves in the weeks preceding this event. The
desert sun is intense, and September can be a month of weather extremes on
the high desert.
Although we have not lost anyone yet, we have had an occasional case of heat
exhaustion and sunstroke, and an occasional horse who needs to be trailered
out early. You will have a better time if both
you and your stock are in good condition.
Our wagon train is led by a 4-up of
large Belgian mules who keep up a quick pace. Regular exercise and a
couple of good trail rides before this trip will go a long way to making
sure you and your animals can keep up with the pace. Make sure your animals' feet can handle rough and rocky terrain.
If not shod, introduce them to "Easy Boot"-type footwear, in case you need it on the trail.
Our dress code is simple: While on the trail, arms
must be covered, colors must be within the "historically possible" for the
time period (no day-glow...), and if you are an outrider you must wear
either a helmet or a western-style hat (in other words, no baseball caps).
Leather footwear, please, no sneakers. Otherwise, it's up to you. Jeans and
long-sleeved shirt are fine. Once settled in camp, you may wear whatever you
Group riding, and keeping up with the wagon train, make this trail more challenging than it might appear. The trail itself is not difficult for saddle stock. But the energy and excitement of riding in a large, fast-moving group through wide,
the noise generated by metal wheel rims and chains, and wide open spaces can make your horse or
mule harder to manage than he might be on a trail back home, which can be un-nerving to many riders. The better prepared you are, the more fun you will have.
Make sure your stock is traffic safe, as ATV-ers share our trails, and the
last several miles are on paved streets through Fallon.
However, it can add a lot to the feeling of participating in a historical
re-enactment - plus it makes for way better "photo op's" - if you want to
wear something old-timey.
Historically accurate clothing for women can be problematic today, as ladies in
those days wore long, cumbersome skirts. It's fine to improvise, to mix and
match, bend gender lines a bit, and also draw from later, though still old-time
fashion periods. A modern western ranch look is fine, too.
and LAUGHING MOON
are good resources for patterns and ideas.
- WATER: Drink plenty of water - MUCH more than you
usually drink, More often than you usually drink! Each year, one or more
riders run into problems from not
drinking enough water, so be pro-active and drink up!
- Wear a hat or helmet with a visor, or carry a parasol
- Use sunscreen! Also, even in hot weather, wear long sleeves.
- Be sure to bring whatever medications you
reasonably expect to need
- Get your animal's feet trimmed and/or shod in plenty of time, so they are not footsore at the trip's outset.
- If your horse or mule or
donkey is barefoot, consider using "easy boots" (any brand - EasyBoot, Cavallo,
Renegade, etc - anything that fits and works) on at least
their front feet. Even if your horse or mule could handle the terrain barefoot, he will appreciate having the boots
on some of the rougher sections of the trail.
|You are responsible for transporting your own
stuff, so don't bring anything that is not essential. Things to
- FOOD & WATER: This year we
are asking each person to feed themselves
- Clothing....create LAYERS
with warm & cool clothing, western hat with stampede string or riding
- NO BALL CAPS ON THE TRAIL (okay at night in camp)
- Long sleeved shirts, long pants, & boots are REQUIRED for the trail. Tanks and tees, shorts, and tennies or flip-flops are all okay around camp.
- Good bedroll or sleeping bag,
ground pad, extra blankets, pillow
- Tarp or tent
- Snacks for you. Hard tac and
jerky were traditional.
- Personal Toiletries:
Toothbrush & toothpaste, Soap, Shampoo, Shaving kit if desired
- Lip balm
- Sun block
- Bandana or scarf
- Bug repellent
- Gloves can be handy
- Folding or lawn chair - it's
nice to have somewhere to sit at supper time.
- Camera with flash, extra
batteries, film or memory chips
- Spare tire if you have a
rubber tired wagon, we will have air with us.
- Light for Night: Matches, lantern, extra fuel,
flashlight, batteries, whatever you have.
- Slicker, raingear - just in case
- Silverware unless you don't
mind the stupid plastic stuff
- Any other personal items,
medications, etc., that you need
- Soft Drinks
and/or Booze if you want it
FOR YOUR STOCK:
- Bring your own feed -
pelleted, please, plus any grain, mineralized
salt, or supplements if you feed them
- Bucket for water and grain (A
- feedbag if you use one
- Good halter and lead rope.
It's a good idea to bring a spare, too.
- Hobbles if you can use them -
not too many trees or hitching posts out here. Most horses & Mules do
well on the picket line. Electric fence or corrals are okay. No pipe
- Optional first aid or
emergency vet kit
- Hoof care kit:
SHOES ARE NO LONGEWR REQUIRED - IT'S UP TO YOU!
- Fly spray and grooming stuff, according to your preferences