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Man Vs. Wild


The Wagonteamster Channel has it’s first video production - Journey To the Valley Of the Wild Horses


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6/5/13, Valley Falls, OR - This week I was pleasantly surprised with a visit from my good friend and fellow adventurer Bernie Harberts. Four years ago, Bernie sold me the Biscuit Wagon for the ghastly price of a really good biscuit from a Bojangles Restaurant.

During the past few days, Bernie was reunited with his wonderful rolling creation as Jacquie, he and I spent several days wagoneering and camping in the National Forest.  Following is a picture journal of our travels, in a segment I call, “Man Versus Wild”.


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Bernie “Bear Gryll” Harberts displaying some survival food, caught in Mill Flat Lake.  Hershey was right there reminding him that he is man’s best friend.


Leaving the house, it’s a short trip to the first cattle guard.  To speed things along, I used the truck to pull the wagon across while the horses are led around. Then, the team is hitched up for the drive to the remaining cattle guards.


It’s a real treat to have a competent teamster spell me on the lines.

The first night was spent camping at Mill Flat Lake. The grazing was lush, the weather was fantastic and the fish were biting.  Doc and Bill pulled most of the 15 mile trip to the lake, but just after we entered the Forest, I swapped out Bill for Bob for the pull up to the lake.


Wagonteamster camp on MIll Flat Lake.


Bernie and I mounted Doc and Bill for a late afternoon ride.


As Doc enjoys jumping over obstacles, he was excited about being ridden by for Steeplechase Jockey, Bernie Harberts.


As the early morning mist rose from the lake, Survival Expert Bernie Harberts braved the predawn elements to pursue the elusive trout


Since it was a short journey to our next camping location, the lads enjoyed  a lazy morning in camp. Bill was so impressed by the quality of the grazing, he adopted the lazy horse’s method of munching on some breakfast.


Mill Flat Lake is fed from this wonderful, high flow spring. The spring is covered by a thick carpet of watercress.  Bernie used this delicate green to substitute his diet of wild trout and Tennessee Whiskey.

For the six mile trip to our next camping spot on Cox Creek, Bernie scouted the trail ahead with Bill, while Bob and Doc pulled the wagon.


As we continued to gain altitude, the Ponderosa Pine was augmented by stands of fir and spruce.


A large water gap in the electric playpen gave the lads an opportunity to splash cool water on their warm bellies. From this picture alongside Cox Creek, you get the impression that the lads enjoy these forest outings!


The lads weren’t the only ones that were muddying up the creek waters. As Bernie sifted through the riparian logs for fishing bait, he left a muddy trail downstream. Fortunately, this didn’t affect the fishing.


Hershey, once again admiring a nice stringer full of trout, slated for the evening grill.


Bill, once again admiring the hectic morning pace of life in the woods.


The wagon tongue resting in front of a cattle guard on the forest boundary.  With three people, we made quick work of getting the wagon across.  Rather than unhooking the evener and using the horses, we managed to push it across ourselves.


After three days, the lads finally pulling the wagon out of the forest.


Relaxing during a long lunch at Chandler Park on the 21 mile trip back to the house.

This was a wonderful few days spent in the mountains with a truly great friend.  This morning, Bernie finished his road trip out west and began a four day journey back across the country to North Carolina.  Hopefully, it won’t be another four years before we once more see each other.