Here is a nice look at the USFS Packers and their mules. Only five middle age guys left doing this job. While Backcountry Horsemen volunteer to help doing a similar job, I wonder if there is a plan to continue this program into the future?  Pete

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Glad to learn that you guys are doing this!  Do you work with SGWA or another volunteer group?


I am the president of San Gorgonio Pass Unit of Backcountry Horsemen. We volunteer our time and mules to work on trails in the area. I have only lived here about 2 years (moved from Humboldt County), so I'm still learning the place. Please, tell me more about SGWA.

The San Gorgonio Wilderness Association evolved out the Defenders of the Wilderness once the fate of the SG Wilderness was secure.  They have both hikers and riders maintaining trails, helping vistors etc.  They are great people - I know some of them because they are interested in Heritage and help me out too.  You can find out tons more about them on their webpage :  Maybe they can help you on some of your projects and vice versa - I think a number of riders are interested in the Banning/Pass area. 


Does the San Gorgonio Pass Unit of Backcountry Horsemen work with the USFS Pack Mule Program?

Thanks for that link Gina. Our unit has about 100 members, but only about a dozen show to most events. We are part of state and national organizations that do considerable work  with the USFS. Many of us are friends with the last 5 men in California that pack mules for the USFS. We support them in may ways both in the forest and "in-town" events like county fairs and festivals where we educate the public. While I do pack with my mules, I am devoted to the educational aspects of what we do. I am also a Leave No Trace Master Educator for stock and do several lectures each year. 

I checked our schedule and see that we are planning a work party weekend out of Heart Bar on the Mission Creek Trail on August 18th. We have ongoing projects in the San Jacinto Wilderness with  CA State Parks and CCC trail crew for the next few years.

Hi Peter, I've been writing about the Mountain Beaver. I'm from Humboldt too. Wish we had more young people who loved mules. I think there is going to be a come back because of the need to get into wilderness areas. Learned to throw a hitch for my 40th birthday. I packed in with Rock Creek Pack Station and found I like them as much as horses, they're just different. Almost came home with one when I went to Mule Days.



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