Thursday, September 2, 2010

Denali Trail Ride

September 2. I wanted to go back to Byers Lake and do a five mile circuit hike around the lake. But we had been told to expect to run into bears (one of the nearby creeks was named Troublesome Creek for that very reason) because of all the salmon. Mary felt like we were pushing our luck. We'd already hiked into Russian River Falls during the salmon run and had not seen bears, despite a wounded grizzly in the area. She was very uneasy with the idea of just the two of us doing this hike, so I gave up the idea. We went for a guided trail ride instead, after I took a short hike of a couple of miles near the hotel.

We rode with D&S trail rides, on horses that liked to walk along, which was fine with me. There were five of us, plus the two wrangers who guided the two hour ride. My horse was named "Yukon", and he was the gassiest animal I think I have ever run into. Mary's horse was named "Montana". I have only been riding a few times in my life, and given that and the often rough and steep trails, a nice walk was the best pace for the group. However, one lady complained constantly that she wanted to canter, which got kind of tiresome. All in all, though, it was a fun activity, and here are a few photos.

D&S trail rides gives both trail rides and horse drawn carriage rides through the Alaskan bush. I actually took this photo on my hike.Here is their headquarters, pretty much in the middle of nowhere:Our head wranger on his horse:Our two wrangers did a great job. The young woman grew up in the Congo and had applied for this job with no experience. Steve, the "S" in the D&S and our head wrangler, said they gave her a chance and she did great. He said she could easily get a job as a wrangler anywhere now, although he was hoping she would stay on.
Here we are on the trail. Denali is back in the clouds:A couple of the horses on the trail:
Views as we rode:

1 comment:

  1. I'm with Mary. I would have been afraid to run into bears too!
    I've been riding only a few times and have enjoyed! Those wrangles certainly look the part too. :-)