Virginia Highlands Horse Trail Mule Ramble Update: Cripple Creek

Howdy. Mules Brick, Cracker and I wanted to give you a quick update about our pack trip up the Virginia Highlands Horse Trail. We’ve been on the road nine days now and have traveled about 70 miles. Cell phone reception has been pretty much nonexistent, but I finally got some coverage in Cripple Creek.

Brick, Cracker and me on Grayson Highlands (photo by SheRa)

 I thought you’d enjoy these photos from the last few days. The Virginia Highlands horse trail is an absolute treasure. I traveled for two full days without seeing anybody. 

Brick and Cracker on the Virginia Highlands Horse Trail
You’ve been warned. Horse and muleback riders beware: a sign at Hussey Mountain Horse Camp. Some parts of the trail can be dangerously rough. (Virginia Highlands Horse Trail, Virginia)
Brick and Cracker’s Renegade hoof boots on a rocky section of the Virginia Highlands Horse Trail
Some people say hoof boots aren’t good for rough terrain. I say steel shoes aren’t perfect, either. So far, I haven’t lost a single hoof boot in 60 miles of sometimes really rough going.
Showing me the route
Cody and Clay giving me routing advice (Fox Creek Camp, Virginia Highlands Horse Trail)
Meet my forest neighbor, Mrs (or Mr?) Slug (2 miles from Raccoon Camp, Virginia Highland Horse Camp)
I’ve been cooking all my meals on a BioLite wood stove. I use fatwood from our farm to light the stove in rainy conditions. Here, I’m wedging a piece of rhododendron into my fatwood bundle to keep it tight.

I’m currently camped at Nancy and Bill Sluys’ in Cripple Creek. Thank you guys so much for putting up the mules and me. I apologize for the way rhe microwave stinks of burned croissant. I think I’ve been in the woods a little too long to operate other peoples’ appliances. 

Camped at Bill and Nancy Sluys’ farm. That’s Keith Smith holding Brick. (Cripple Creek, Virginia)
Renegade hoof boot repair party: rebuilding Renegade hoof boots with Hannah and Lisa and Bill and Lisa’s. My boots have held up great in the rough going. (Cripple Creek, Virginia)

The Next Leg in the Mule Ramble

The mules and I plan to get back on the trail tomorrow and head toward Ivanhoe on the New River.

 Happy rambling! 



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