Ride out the Front Gate

Welcome to RiverEarth.com

Howdy. This is where I (Bernie Harberts) post about my travels by mule, boat and bike.

Bernie sitting on mules Brick and Cracker
Mules Cracker and Brick and I are currently heading toward Idaho. We started our voyage in North Carolina in early April.

To join me for an authentic mule voyage, check out the Lost Sea Expedition, the Rocky Mountain PBS series about my 14 month mule voyage across America.

Stream the series on:
-Amazon

-Vimeo

My wife Julia’s take on things at Considering Animals.com.

Happy Adventuring!

Bernie


Living Lean and Feeling Bionic

Bernie Harberts, mule, mule polly, lost sea expedition, adventure, lost sea expedition, amazon prime

Mule ramblin’ digs: Julia and the mules prepare to bunk down for the night on last fall’s mule ramble. We spent six weeks traveling from our farm in western NC to Virginia and back. (Iron Mountain Trail, Damascus, VA)

“There’s a certain sharpness that comes from not being comfortable all the time.”
That’s Julia writing about our month and a half long mule ramble we took last fall. We traveled with little more than a tent, 2 jugs of water… Continue reading

The Mule Ramble Begins

bernie harberts lost sea expedition mule polly tiny house public tv rocky mountain pbs

Julie and I moments before we swung in to the saddle to begin our mule ramble. We are traveling with (L-R) Dusty, Polly and Brick.

We’re off! Today (Friday), Julia and I swung in to our saddles and began our mule ramble. Today we’re riding to the Happy Valley Fiddler’s Convention (Happy Valley, NC). The 10 mile ride should take about 4 – 5 hours. Yeah, the first days of a mule journey are slooooooow. I look forward to posting… Continue reading

Ya Need a Needle

Bernie Harberts, Bernie Harberts photo, Julie Carpenter, ride out the front gate, riverearth.com, mule, horse, trail ride, western North Carolina, packing, adventure, voyage, horse voyage, mule voyage, barefoot hoof trim, pack mule

Where’s the needle in this picture? In my beard, my hat or my bandana? Why do I need it? Read on.

Out here roaming the Virginia Highlands with our mules, we’re in possession of a sliver of steel as important as lentils, hoof boots and butt cheek callouses.
That would be the humble needle. The good old fashioned, honest-as-a-Norman-Rockwell-painting needle. The humble needle that harks back to the days of mending socks and shirts and your britches when they split.… Continue reading

Let the Photos Speak

Bernie Harberts, Bernie Harberts photo, Julie Carpenter, ride out the front gate, riverearth.com, mule, horse, trail ride, western North Carolina, packing, adventure, voyage, horse voyage, mule voyage, barefoot hoof trim, pack mule

Julia working on her relationship with mule Dusty. He’s actually a lovable hard working mule…just has some quirks. She borrowed him from our good friend Ronald Hudson for this trip.

Some days words capture our mule ramble best. Other days it’s photos. Today’s one of those picture days. Julia captures the mule ramble mood on her Saddle Under the Stars blog. Some beautiful scenery and mule interaction is just a click away.


Tent Goodnight

Bernie Harberts, Bernie Harberts photo, Julie Carpenter, ride out the front gate, riverearth.com, mule, horse, trail ride, western North Carolina, packing, adventure, voyage, horse voyage, mule voyage, barefoot hoof trim, pack mule

The tent tonight. For us, this is luxury lodging: we’re set up inside a cow barn.(Damascus, VA)

Goodnight from our tent. It’s been a rainy day for mule travel. Julia and I are holed up waiting dryer weather. We’re here in Mike Johnson’s cow barn (Damascus, VA) cozy and dry, grateful for all the fine folks that have taken care of us during our mule ramble. Here’s what it’s like inside our tent tonight.
Enjoy.
Sleep tight.
Bernie

Bernie Harberts, Bernie Harberts photo, Julie Carpenter, ride out the front gate, riverearth.com, mule, horse, trail ride, western North Carolina, packing, adventure, voyage, horse voyage, mule voyage, tent, barn, cow barn

My mattress… Continue reading

Sought: Lodging for 3 Mules

bernie harberts julia caprenter riverearth.com horse camp tent mule trail ride shadow

Mule time: out here traveling the land with our mules, shadow length, not what the clock says, is how we measure time.

Julia and I are riding our mules across the Appalachian back roads. It’s noon. The sun hangs plumb above our heads before starting its slow descent to the wooded horizon. The mules throw fat shadows, a set of stumpy shadows walking beside their real legs.
The sun slides down the other side of its daily arc, toward the… Continue reading

About the First 100 Miles

Bernie Harberts, Bernie Harberts photo, Julie Carpenter, ride out the front gate, riverearth.com, mule, horse, trail ride, western North Carolina, packing, adventure, voyage, horse voyage, mule voyage, barefoot hoof trim, pack mule

Morning execise: no this isn’t some fancy yoga move like the Upward Mule. It’s Julia shaking the grass out of our tent. Mule Brick is looking on. We do this every morning before we fold up out tent, rope it to Polly’s pack saddle and hit the trail.

It’s about Mile 100 of our mule journey. We have settled in to the mule ramble pace. I say “about” Mile 100 because we don’t really know how far we’ve come. And… Continue reading

Chris: Worm Wrangler

The man hunched over the plastic container on the side of the road was grabbing at the dirt. We’d seen all sorts of sight on our mule ramble. So far, though, nobody shuffling through the damp leaves on the shoulder looking for, what the hell….? Meet Chris, worm seeker.


Current Ramble
Other Cool Reads
Categories
Archives
Follow Bernie!