2018 Rendezvous - Island Park, ID
The NAPgA Rendezvous is coming up June 21-24, and it will be held in Island Park, ID in the same place we held it in 2015. I'll be adding more info to this thread as it comes in. 

But first off, the NAPgA board is nailing the schedule together and there are so many good options with volunteers to teach classes that we're going to have to pick and choose. So we're asking the NAPgA members and other Rendy attendees which classes interest them most. Please take a moment and fill out the survey: 

The Rendy is fast approaching - Are you ready?? 

There's a new page up on the NAPgA website which can be viewed here: 

Desarae put together a very nice flyer that I've linked on the NAPgA website. Thanks Desarae!
Here are some photos of our Rendy location! 
How pretty.
Happiness is a working goat
That area was created before God invented undergrowth, rocks, and weeds.
I don't drink beer, but if I did, I'd prefer Dos Equis.  Stay thirsty my friends!
We are super bummed that responsibilities are keeping us home and unable to attend the Rendy this year, but please post lots of pictures when you guys get back!
Today we stroll the neighborhood, someday we'll climb mountains together..  Heart
I'd love to go but I have to work :-(
I'm sorry you guys weren't able to make it. Rendy 2018 was a great success and it was the biggest one ever. It looks like the next one is going to require a special use permit because we are definitely starting to exceed the 75-person limit. 

Phil and I arrived around 2:30 Thursday afternoon with low, threatening clouds looming over us. We decided that since we were tent camping, a sheltered location would be ideal. We found a suitable little spot, and no sooner had we pulled into it than the rain began to spatter down. I hustled to rig up a high line so we could hang our tarp and perhaps get our tent up before the real rain started, but it was hopeless. I threw the tarp over the line, but before I could get the corners tied off, the heavens opened and Phil and I were forced to retreat. We sat in the truck for a good half hour and more while rain and then hail pelted our foggy windshield and created ever-widening lakes around our tires. I was thankful that I'd packed my rubber muck boots with my raincoat. We got the rain tarp up and then put two more tarps on the ground under our tent. We'd read the weekend's forecast and we were determined to stay dry. 

Once it stopped raining I put Finn and Sputnik out on a picket line to eat grass. We've been in such terrible drought in Colorado, these boys hadn't seen grass like this since last year! You can see our little tent in the background. And it did stay nice and dry all weekend even though we had very heavy rain Friday night--as in several inches. 

The first thing Phil did after setting up our tent was to scope out the thunderboxes. Dwite is in the background with the kids he brought. 

Phil and a few other folks got the tents up. It was cold, wet work. It was too damp that night to start a campfire, so it was a rather cheerless start to the Rendy. We were supposed to hold a NAPgA board meeting Thursday night, but the rain delayed setting up camp, and everyone was too cold, wet, and hungry to face down such formidable topics as amending by-laws and scheduling meetings with the Wild Sheep Foundation. 

Friday morning we set up the Rendy store. The shelves are a bit bare here, but things got added as the day progressed. It was a very successful store this year and ended up raising around $3500!  

The army tent was so long it wound up encroaching on Finn and Sputnik's tethering area. It turned out very well for them. Since it was a high traffic area, they got loads of attention from everybody who walked by. Finn especially lapped it up.  

The board meeting ended up Friday morning, which was supposed to be when our work project took place. Kent was in charge of the work project but he had to be at the board meeting (where we elected him vice president!), so the work project got canceled. The clouds were heavy and threatening, so no one felt like leaving camp to go for a hike. Instead, they hung out and chatted in groups while the board met in the tent. It was nice that people had time to meet and get to know each other. Often times the Rendy ends up being overbooked with activities to the point that no one gets to socialize as much as they'd like. This one wasn't like that. 

After lunch, everyone gathered round to hear Marc Warnke talk about hunting with goats, transporting goats, keeping them fit, etc.  

Marc and Matt Lyons also talked about the various saddles they've used, and showcased their own design.
The sun finally made an appearance later in the afternoon, so Phil and I took Finn and Sputnik for a walk on one of the trails outside of camp. Kate from Australia came with us and we all had a great time stretching our legs and enjoying the scenery and sunshine. 

The boys were really digging the grass in this place! They hardly had to drink all weekend because there was so much moisture in the browse. That's a far cry from Colorado this year! Our grass never exceeded three inches, and now it's all brown and burnt to a crisp, so this Rendy trip was a real treat for my boys. 

"Don't get your toes wet, Finn!" 
By Saturday morning, Finn and Sputnik had eaten and trampled their area down to the dirt. Compare this photo to the ones Thursday and Friday!

The day was clear but chilly. As per tradition, Clay Zimmerman kicked off the festivities with sourdough pancakes. We were grateful for the big army tent which provided a dry place out of the wind for cooking and buffet tables. 

Immediately after breakfast, Clay and I jumped straight into our talk about saddling and saddle fitting. Clay spoke about saddle placement and the particulars of how to properly cinch up and adjust breastcollars and britchen straps.  

I focused not only on saddle placement but on fit. Here I am showing people how to look down the channel for spinal clearance and how to see the angle of the tree vs. the angle of their goat's back. 

It was fun to have two vastly different goats to compare/contrast saddle fit. This saddle was on Finn in the previous photo and it more or less fits with a few issues (which would be largely resolved if Finn lost weight). Sputnik, on the other hand, is a saddle fitting nightmare so it was fun to demonstrate the differences. Here we're looking at how the rear of the saddle perches up higher than the front.   

Marc demonstrated his new saddle design on Finn. This saddle fit Finn like a glove. 

After lunch, a huge crowd gathered to hear Dwite speak about goat nutrition and parasites. There were many good questions and a lot of good advice. 

Sunday morning we packed everything up and headed out around noon. We met a lot of new folks and reconnected with many that we'd met before. We met some folks face-to-face for the first time who we knew online. It's always fun to put a face to a name at these events. We saw many beautiful packgoats and packgoat prospects as well. Soon it will be time to start planning for Rendy 2019!

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