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Having been into hunting for recreation and my living all my adult life I have used a lot of different things to add to the success I've had. One of the very best for back country hunting and access to remote roadless areas has been the Pack goats I have. There buggers will eat what they find, drink almost nothing, and pack about 40-50 pounds each day. At two miles an hour of walking and about 1.2 MPH climbing steep trails in 5-6 hours you can be well away from almost all the other hunters.

My "boys" have packed hundreds of miles or roadless and much of it trail-less areas of the high alpine for me. If you have two goats which need about a 1/2 acre to live. You can pack close to 100 pounds of gear, or pack out the same in meat and hides. They also spot more game then you will. Often when walking they will stop and stare. look where they are and a deer, coyote, or bear will be off in the distance. They have spotted game 200 yards away for me!

Anyhow I wanted to share some photo's here:










 

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I've seen many a horse, and a # of lamas when in the hills...but never goats. 50lbs is a BIG load for a small critter like a goat. They must be really hearty!
 

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They pack about 25-30% of their weight. My bigger goats were in the 200-230 range in mid summer. During the winter they weigh a bit less. I had two white Saanens for a while they were pushing 300 lbs. The bigger one Casper packed out 65bls for 11 miles over a day and a half, mostly down hill. They pack bear or lion meat without hesitation.
 

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Wow!!! I had know idea they made such good pack animals, or that they were that large. I am not framiliar with those breeds. Where are the from?
I know that no livestock are no maintenance, but I bet being a goat...They have to be somewhat low maint.
You must be able to turn your back on them too...lol! I do see in your pic you are a ways ahead of them....
 

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They are zero maintainace. After a secure fence is put it with hot wire they eat what ever they find. Look close at that photo of them eating devils club.

When they are born they are taken that day from the mother. They are castrated and raised with a bottle in a small barn with a talk radio station on. By the time they are 8 weeks old they only know human voice and imprint with Humans. After that they never go with other goats. Mine all know their names and come to me when called.

They can walk anyplace I can, and carry much more. I sold my goats when I moved in Feb Last year. I had no place for them at the time. I have quite a lot of Tack, saddles, and bags remaining for anyone interested in getting some goats for packing. I may get some more in the future but for now I have a few other priorities. There is simply nothing better then this for hunting the alpine. If there is a short coming it's that your hiking with bait. Lions always worried me at night. I did have a goat killed by a lion. I killed that lion but it's the one thing that is tough to overcome. I suppose that there is one other thing. It's about 4 years to get one to pack very good. Finding a good pack goat ready to go is difficult and expensive. A top line packer should sell for close to a 750-1000 bucks. If your lucky to find a 4 year old expereinced goat for less buy it! If you can wait til they are 4 years old then it's way cheaper. Even a 1-2 year old goat can pack for you. He can carry 10-15 pounds, still better then you having to carry it.
 

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Jim, Thanks for sharing. I have often wondered what your goats looked liek packing. Those are great pictures. I pack horses & mules and we are definately limited at times where we can take them. Pretty cool!
 
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