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Entering Flaming Gorge

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5/25/12, Flaming Gorge, UT - After a long day yesterday, the lads and I didnít travel too far today. With a late start, stopping early and loading up on water at the creek, a short day worked out just great.

I started the day with all three horse hitched up, as there were still a few more steep hills to climb.  A fresh team glides up hills, but when theyíre spent itís a real struggle.

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About to enter another National Recreation Area. This one is managed by the Department of Agriculture. The last one I traveled through (Curecanti, near Gunnison, CO was managed by the Department of the Interior - Iím so confused.

We passed through some beautiful country.  The thick spruce and aspen forest gave way to open park land meadows, sided by stands of aspen, spruce, fir and lodgepole pine.  Like much of the Western Rockies, it was a very dry winter. Streams that are normally gushing torrents are now bone dry. A few miles from our starting point, I was relieved to find one brook that still had a good flow of water. I decided to take an early lunch in order to fill my empty containers. I bet the lads were glad they had climbed all the hills before I brought on another 80 gallons of water!

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As I travel farther north, thick stands of lodgepole pine are now commonplace. Straight as an arrow, and skinny as a rail, itís easy to see why younger trees were used as teepee poles.

With the upcoming Memorial Day Weekend, traffic was fairly heavy.  I did my best to not delay anyone on one of the few weekends that most folks get a chance to go camping with the family.

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At a break stop, a nice family of four brought their youngsters up to see the horses.  This young fellow seemed to be enjoying himself.

Prior to descending the big hill leading to the Flaming Gorge Dam, I decided to find a camping place with some more sweet mountain grass. So tonight, weíre a few hundred yards down a forest road enjoying the good life. Itís nice to be away from the hustle and bustle of the highway. 

Since I now have plenty of water, I donít have to save the wagon tank for horse use and I can enjoy a nice hot shower. I skipped one the last two nights, thinking I might have to give it to the team. After I finish this blog and do a few chores, Iíll rig the wagon for a shower and waste some water.

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This doe was one of two that were near my campsite.

Due to the logistics of water, I plan another short day tomorrow.  About 10 miles away, on the other side of the dam is the small town of Dutch John.  Between there and Rock Springs, WY are 69 dry miles. This is three days of hard pulling.  Since I have the capability of carrying enough water for 2 nights and 3 days, this will be about as long of a dry stretch as I can travel.  So, tomorrow night, after only another 10 miles of travel, I want to camp near Dutch John, so I can tank up there before taking off on the dry stretch to Rock Springs.

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A mountain meadow make a really nice place to camp.

In other news, I heard from Bernie Harberts. Heís currently making arrangements for care of his elderly parents so he can get going on his mule-drawn adventure in the Canadian Maritime. He says that he plans on being there and ready to pull on the full moon (I think thatís about a week and a half from now).

In more other news, Iím hoping to meet up with John and Thea Verhoecyx when Iím north of Rock Springs, WY. They are the Dutch couple who spent 2007 and 2008 traveling around Europe in a gypsy caravan, pulled by two haflingers. Iím sure weíll have a great time.

This evening, the Guestbook had 9,994 entries. Who will be the lucky person to post the 10,000 th entry?