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5 Day Pack Trip Horseback Riding Holiday in The San Juan Mountains Area, Colorado

San Juan Mountains, Colorado, USA

Horseback Pack Trip in Colorado

Participate in the most excellent basecamp pack trip with Over the Hill Outfitters! You will enjoy horseback riding in the most incredible area of the San Juan Mountains, Weminuche Wilderness, with its huge valleys and hanging waterfalls on the valley walls. This is such a memorable thing not to be missed. Experience this wonderful mountain horse riding holiday in the USA!

Key Information

  • Rider Weight Limit: 210 pounds / 95 kilograms
  • Horse Height Range: 18 hands
  • Horse Breed: Quarter Horse
  • Tack Type: Western

Highlights

  • Riding instructions
  • Riding in Weminuche Wilderness
  • Taking the journey to Chicago Basin and Trimble Pass
  • A service of horseback riding guides
  • 4 nights of accommodation
  • Delicious meals

Styles


4 days with instruction
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Accommodation

Lower Park Camp sits at 10,500 feet in a beautiful meadow in the glaciated canyon of the Florida River. The full-service camps are equipped with wall tents, cots, and pads. The cook tent has a woodstove with an oven where he can bake biscuits and even pies.

Program

Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive at Palmer Quarter Horse Ranch at 9:00. Depart with horses and crew to trailhead. Enjoy a majestic approximately 5 ½ hr horseback ride into the Weminuche Wilderness to the base camp. A stop for lunch (provided) and rest is included. Appetizers and dinner will be served that night as you set up your pack in your tent and get settled. Relax under the stars and warm yourself by the campfire in preparation for an amazing week deep in the high country with Over the Hill Outfitters!

Day 2, 3 and 4: Guests enjoy three meals a day and pick if they would like to ride for the day with an experienced wrangler, go fishing in one of the many upper lakes, go hiking or simply stay and relax in camp with a good book or a great nap!

Day 5: Enjoy your last breakfast around the campfire then load the horses and head down the mountain towards the ranch. A stop for lunch again on the way down and last bits of photography in the epic mountains. Arrive back at the ranch at apx17:00 where most guests have rooms booked back in town before departing home or touring on throughout the area.

The list of activities to do is endless. Among the favorites is a ride to one of many high mountain ridges, enjoying incredible views, wildflowers, and of course, elk. Chicago Basin is one of the most sought out destinations in the San Juan but one of the most crowded. You ride horses to the rim where you have the most spectacular view of the basin and the fourteen thousand foot mountains surrounding it, and you won’t see another person!

Trimble Pass is another spot that you will never forget. And if you’re up for it, you can climb to the top of Mount Sheridan for a view that is unmatched. Please note that all of the adventures take place between 7,000 - 14,000 feet. Over the Hill Outfitters advises arriving in Durango two or three days ahead of your departure date so that you can acclimate gradually.

The horses

The other aspect of Over the Hill Outfitters' business on the Palmer Quarter Horse Ranch is to breed, raise, and sell Quarter Horses that are ideally suited to the endeavors that are important to working and living in the mountains. The bloodlines are true foundation bred performance horses such as Two Eyed Jack and Gay Bar King. Because Over the Hill Outfitters uses these horses in their operations, they pay special attention to disposition in addition to great confirmation in their breeding program.

Location

This horse riding holiday will take place in the San Juan Mountains area. This area was heavily glaciated and the valleys are textbook geologic featuring meandering streams through enormous valleys with hanging waterfalls on the valley walls, great expanses of exposed granite, and huge moraines. Fifteen minutes upstream from your camp is a city reservoir, built in the late 1800’s by the city of Durango to store water.

Today, it no longer is used by Durango, but instead provides some of the best lake fishing in the San Juans. The fish are not always big but they are lively. Less than a mile downstream, the canyon boxes off and is unpassable. You can feel the presence of bear and elk in the air as you wander through this true wilderness.

Food

All meals are prepared, cooked and served by fantastic chefs and cooks. Breakfast, lunch, appetizers, dinner, and dessert are included. Meals are primarily hearty western cuisine with sparing no expense to include steak and potatoes, fresh vegetables and fruits, hamburgers and chicken, homemade cobblers and pies. Breakfasts may consist of sausage and egg breakfast burritos, pancakes and bacon, French toast or even crepes! Meals are prepared over open fires and in dutch ovens, the grill, ovens, and stovetops packed into camp via horseback. Special dietary needs may be met if communicated in advance. Beverages included are water, Gatorade, sodas, coffee, juice, milk, tea, and hot cocoa.

Over the Hill Outfitters does not provide alcohol on any of the trips. They will pack in a beverage of your choice (within reason). Since the effects of alcohol are multiplied at altitude, please use common sense. Under no circumstances will anyone be allowed to ride a horse under the influence of alcohol.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
  • Snacks
  • Drinks

The following drinks are included:

  • Water
  • Coffee
  • Tea
  • Soda

The following dietary requirement(s) are served and/or catered for:

  • Regular (typically includes meat and fish)
If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation

What's included

  • Riding instructions
  • Horse riding in San Juan Mountains area
  • A service of the guides
  • Saddle horses or mules, pack stock, and tack
  • Delicious meals
  • Snacks, soft drinks, and purified water
  • Camping gear
  • 4 nights' accommodation

How to get there

Recommended Airports

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 50% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid 30 days before arrival.

Value for money
Accommodation & facilities
Food
Location
Quality of activity
5 days / 4 nights
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Trip is subject to small group surcharge of $100/person/day (3 people or less).

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