[Cdt-l] Experience with Llamas

Karen Somers kborski at yahoo.com
Tue Apr 28 14:09:25 CDT 2009

Thanks, Jonathan.

I'm really wanting specifics on names of outfitters or ranches in Montana that provide llamas to unwitting people like me (I will definitely know my bailout options ahead of time!).  Has anyone out there been on a llama-attended hike, used an outfitter or know someone who has?  


From: Jonathan Ley <jonathan at phlumf.com>
To: cdt-l at backcountry.net
Cc: Karen Somers <kborski at yahoo.com>
Sent: Tuesday, April 28, 2009 1:56:57 PM
Subject: Re: [Cdt-l] Experience with Llamas

While I don’t have any direct experience with llama-packing, from the people I’ve talked to and stories I’ve heard, it seems to me that there is a great deal of variation in the temperament & training from one llama to the next – i.e. all llamas & outfitters are not created equally. I talked to one llama packing outfitter, and they only used less than half of their total herd for pack animals (perhaps even fewer if I remember correctly). This particular outfitter was pretty reputable and experienced. They said that some of the llamas that weren’t used would do things like just “sit down” when they felt like they had enough walking, or be aggressive (sometimes only to the other llamas). But, the good ones, were just great; they said there was really nothing to learn – you just start walking and they follow along… Anyway, my 2 cents would just be to get the llama from someone you trust, or has good references, etc. Also, you might
 consider structuring your trip so that you’re not too far from a “bail point” after your first couple days, so if things aren’t going well, it’s easier to adjust…


Karen Somers wrote: 
Have any of you on this forum ever had experience taking llamas on the CDT?  I am looking to "rent" a few llamas in Montana this summer.  I have absolutely no experience with them (other than reading Cindy Ross's book, "Scraping Heaven").  


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