6 mile assessment walk and cool coyote interaction
Hey Guys,
This happened a couple of weeks ago but I wanted to share it anyway.

A few weeks ago my wife was out of town and my parents in law took my kind for the better part of the day which left me with the rare oppertunity to take my guys on a semi fully loaded trail hike.  I picked  a loop on Ft. Lewis that goes around a mashy, stream, pond area and through a pheasant release sight.  This area has some spots this good fishing assess as well a pritty good wild life viewing.  The loop was a total of about 6.5 mile and very flat.  It was the first real hike over 2 miles they had ever done witb or with out packs.  I was trying to get an idea of where my guys where physically as wellas how there following training was going. 
As we walked down a tank trail through part of the pheasant release sight I saw a coyote on the road heading our way maybe 80 yrds out.  He had already stopped to check me out and after a few seconds hopped of into the brush.  Then all of a sudden that little coyote started going crazy, yipping, howling and running around in the brush.  Well my goats who where spread out over about 30 yrds inline behing me moved up to almost in my back pack in about 2 seconds.  They stayed i my pocket for the next mile.  That little coyote hand railed us for about 20 minutes carrying on.  I guys maybe he smelled the guys and could not help himself.  It was very funny though.  Its also intresting to note that I have seen two of my three packers head bunt dogs that have gotten to close and I think one my have evn clunked a pritty agressive one the other day.  However that little wild coyote put the fear of god in all 3 quick.  Its funny how maybe they know the difrence between a dumb kind tuff house dog and a for real predator.

Any way we all survived the hike.  The guys where beat.  When we did finally get back to the truck the all ruck sack flopped at there spot on a log where I had them hooked.  Luckily for them being a Dad I had packed post hike snacks for them all, whick they all inhaled.  I then took them all down to the water incase they wanted a drink, which none seemed to want.  I low lined then in a spot where they could get both grass a blackberry bushes, I them went fly fishing for a while and turned up a mix of nice cut throat trout, sun fish and bass which I release as quickly as I could.  I loaded up the guys and headed home feeling very prepared for my up comming trip.

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I've never encountered a coyote yet. I guess, while people think of coyotes living in the desert, there are just fewer animals per mile here in the end. I mostly worry about snakes under a ledge or something that I step over.

You have an amazing looking crew. But whats a tank trail? My goats have little love of dogs, but it was my yak that could really do a number on them with her up-turned horns. She hated yappers coming up to her and I had to warn people to keep their dogs on a lead as we'd pass on a trail.

I see you've got one of the fancy pack rigs on your lead goat. I'd like to get one or two of those myself-- Perhaps next month.
I don't drink beer, but if I did, I'd prefer Dos Equis.  Stay thirsty my friends!
Thanks for the compliment about the guys.  They are a sick looking crew thats for sure!!!  

Steve the white Alpine has dirted one golden lab, and Garbie the big tan Alpine took out a full sized poodle.  Both on trails and I worned the owners to keep there dogs back.  The owners responded with " My dog wont bight", that was not what I was warning them about HA HA!!

I have a mix match of saddles and panniers.  I got a North West wood saddle with a set of beat up blue panniers and a North West aluminum saddle with brand new is panniers both of Craigslist.  The other wood saddle I baught new from Matt Lion at Bantom Saddle Tack.  That one is awesome it has the Marc Warnke new style rigging.  The cools you see on Garbie are Ozark cools from Walmart that I made rigging for so they can be rigged on a saddle.  I do not like the Aluminum saddle as much as the wood.  The shape just does not seem like it matches the shape of a goat.  I do love the North West "Pocket pads" and Matt Lions "Stay put pads" though.  Its nice just having the one piece saddle and pads to deal with, also there is no pad slide or creep over time.
O'ya a Tank trail is what any where else would be called a jeep trail or fire road.  Its called a Tank trail because its on Ft. Lewis and before the creation of Stykers the Army used Tanks, Bradlys and APC's, so thats what drove around on those roads.  Tank trail just stuck and is a term in common usage on the base even for COPS and Firefighters.
I have encountered a cyotye once, it stared at my whether Mufasa for a few minutes,i swung my extra lead rope at it a few times and he ran of.
Happiness is a working goat

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