From the first miners to the first Sierra Club group trips to today's Wilderness adventurers, one constant in the Eastern Sierra has been the availability of a sturdy string of horses or mules ready to pack supplies into the high country. Pack Stations, packers and their animals are part of the regions history, and still provide valuable service in the Wilderness, from carrying in tools and trail crews, to bringing food and fuel to hikers on multi-day treks, to providing day rides or entire trips to those who enjoy the scenery from the back of a horse or mule.
Areas of Service and Expertise
Virtually every trail-head in the Eastern Sierra is served or can be served by one of about 16 pack outfits operating in the region. Packers work out of Bridgeport, Mammoth Lakes, Bishop, Big Pine Independence and Lone Pine. The packers spend their summers in the high country, thus know the terrain and the sights and sounds of the Sierra. Obviously, they can also handle their animals, whether on a riding trail or a pack string. Plus, they can cook meals for 2 to 12 with ease.
Types of Experiences and Trips Provided
Pack Stations offer day trips on horseback. Other trips available are multi-day fully outfitted trips into the Wilderness, or trips that ferry supplies into specific locations for those on long, backpacking trips. Evening meals, stories and tall tales are also part of the deal, along with knowledge of the flora and fauna.
ADA Accessibility Notes
For some, a horse is the only way to comfortably access a Wilderness Area, and packers take special care and pride to provide that service.