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Beartooth Mountains, Montana Horsepack Trip 08-08-1997

"Morning in the Beartooths is a great experience. Enjoy a hot cup of coffee next to a crackling fire as you watch the sun rise over the mountain peaks. The crisp, mountain air warms quickly as the sun works its magic, and out on the water the trout are beginning to rise.

With the fish rising, it doesn't take long for the fishermen to set down their coffee cups, pick up their rods, and head for the water. While our guests are catching trout, the cook is preparing a breakfast of pancakes, bacon, and eggs. By the time breakfast is ready we can hear the ring of swiss bells, as the wrangler brings the loose horses and mules in from their night of grazing."

After breakfast, fishermen ready their tackle while the cowboys saddle the stock. Shortly, we're off on the trail, heading for a day's fishing. The trail takes us across Peace Lake Pass. As camp fades from sight behind us, Wounded Man Canyon comes into view. The string winds its way down the switchbacks and past Peace Lake. Then up the opposing canyon wall, and in less than an hour everyone is stringing up their rods and ready to try their luck on Heather Lake."

The fish in Heather Lake are from 12 - 16 inches, and are aggressive feeders. In the clear water you can spot a cutthroat trout at thirty yards and cast to him, usually with exciting results."

Lunch is pretty simple, roast a hotdog over the fire, some pork and beans, chips and a candy bar for dessert. After lunch, a nap in the shade might be good, or you might just go right back to the cutts."

By late afternoon everyone packs up their gear and we turn for camp. By the time we get to camp our cook is roasting pork tenderloin over the fire and generally bustling around the kitchen. The stock is unsaddled and turned loose to graze while everyone is busy washing up for supper."

After a supper of pork loin, wild rice, and fruit salad, everyone settles in around the campfire for an evening of conversation and tall tales. If there is anything in the mountains that rivals the beauty of a sunrise, it can only be the setting of the sun. The bellies of the scattered clouds turn to bright red, yellow and blue. Off to the southwest, the snow on the crest of Cuttoff Mountain glistens in the twilight. As evening deepens, the timid little creatures of the mountains start to appear: mule deer bucks with their antlers covered in velvet, the calls of night birds, and muskrats carving soundless wakes across the water surface. Then from the warmth of you sleeping bag, you'll often hear in the distance a coyote's howl; this officially announces the end of the day.

If you're interested in a high country horsepack trip, give us a call and we'll let you in on all the details so you can decide if this adventure is right for you.

Written by Scott Heywood

P.O. Box 845 • Sheridan, Wyoming 82801 • (P) 800-211-8530 • (F) 307-672-3920
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