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Pack Goats

 
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  #113  
Old 10-21-2011, 12:10 PM
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Re: Pack Goats

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Originally Posted by royinidaho View Post
Not worried much about daylight hours and any bad animal. Actually feel that louring a woof into a threatening distance would be quite pleasurable.

Biggest concern is at night when I tend to sleep very sound. Don't know if very loud snoring is an attractant or a deterrent.

Also, just bought a trailer big enough to carry a couple of Gs plus all the other stuff. Next step is to improve fencing. Gonna be a very busy summer in 2012
I hope you update us regularly, Roy. This has my interest peaked and I'll be curious to see how things go for you in this regard.

You get that big 375AM barking yet this fall?
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  #114  
Old 10-21-2011, 12:22 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Rigby Idaho
Posts: 39
Re: Pack Goats

Well, I have spent quite a few nights in the woods with my goats, nearly a months worth this year alone, and havent had an issue with a predator yet. I actually tend to sleep a little more soundly with them nearby, as I know their sence of smell and hearing is working even when Im asleep. Although, as best as the terrain will allow, I generally do pick camping spots that are wide an open vs deep in thick timber so as to remove possible stealthy approach routes for a night predator.

Trailer wise, the best transport option I have had yet is simply an inexpensive stock rack in the back of my halfton 6ft pickup bed. I can get six goats into my six ft bed with the stock rack on it. My next favorite is a old truck bed trailer I picked up for a $100. Its got an 8ft bed, and a shell on top. I put a wood divider up the middle incase I want to take some horned and some non horned goats at the same time. I routinely haul 6 goats inside it, and its so light that my friends v6 pickup tows it with ease.
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  #115  
Old 10-22-2011, 12:26 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Blackfoot, Idaho
Posts: 8,121
Re: Pack Goats

jmden & packgoatguy,

The 375 won't get goin' till March of 2012. Ain't that the pits.......

Had the kid buy a bigger trailer. The first one was one of those 4X8 small things with the itty bitty wheels. Folded up nicely for storage but is too small and rough riding. I haven't seen this one yet. I think its 5 by 9 feet. Its about the largest thing I can pull with my Habitat Invasion Vehicle (HIV) Carrier. (A aged beater but reliable mountain machine Suzuki Sidekick)

The stuff I tote packs in at around 75 pounds on a heavy day plus the rifle. I figure a couple of goats can pack all of stuff and I'll carry the rifle.

I plan on packing in and setting up camp for a couple of days early in the season then caching most stuff and leave it there until the season's end or I shoot something.

For the most part the only worrisome predator would be a mountain lion and/or a black bear.

Been thinking of upgrading my Springfield XD 9mm to a 45 just in case..... But with 16 shots I otta be able to put the hurt on something.....
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  #116  
Old 10-31-2011, 03:51 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Rigby Idaho
Posts: 39
Re: Pack Goats

RoyinIdaho, your normal hunting pack weight is 75lbs? I can see why you could use some goats, that would break my back hauling that around a long day of hunting. Ive gotten into a bit of an 'ultralight' kick this year so that I could take a few less goats when I solo hunted. Although I never weighed it before, Im sure my previous gear weights before and after the goats were in the 50 to 75 pound range like you have experienced. But, this year, I got my total gear weight, including food, water, pack, etc (everything except the boots on my feet, the shirt and pants on my person, and the bow or rifle in my hands) down to 28 pounds for a 4 day 3 night solo hunt. That way, I could take 3 goats and they could haul out a mature bull elk for me if necessary. (boned out, a bull elk weighs in around 160-200lbs in my experience, so each goat would have 50-65 lbs each for the trip out, and I would have my 28lbs of gear plus the antlers on my back.) At first, I thought I would have to sacrifice a lot to get my gear weight down that much, but that weight still includes; pistol, range finder, binos, calls, bugle, rope, warm clothes, rain gear, water filter, 0 degree sleeping bag, thermarest, 1 man tent, first aid kit, boning knives and game bags, and even a small fishing kit (as there are some great lakes to fish where I hunt, and makes for a nice afternoon diversion after a long morning of hunting) It only includes about a liter of water, as I mentioned I also carry a water filter and am always within a half mile of some spring, lake, or creek where I hunt. Ive got about a pound of food for each day, over 2000 calories per day. It took me all summer and a lot of trial and error to come up with my current gear list, but it was worth it.
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  #117  
Old 10-31-2011, 05:10 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: SW Idaho
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Re: Pack Goats

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Originally Posted by packgoatguy View Post
RoyinIdaho, your normal hunting pack weight is 75lbs? I can see why you could use some goats, that would break my back hauling that around a long day of hunting. Ive gotten into a bit of an 'ultralight' kick this year so that I could take a few less goats when I solo hunted. Although I never weighed it before, Im sure my previous gear weights before and after the goats were in the 50 to 75 pound range like you have experienced. But, this year, I got my total gear weight, including food, water, pack, etc (everything except the boots on my feet, the shirt and pants on my person, and the bow or rifle in my hands) down to 28 pounds for a 4 day 3 night solo hunt. That way, I could take 3 goats and they could haul out a mature bull elk for me if necessary. (boned out, a bull elk weighs in around 160-200lbs in my experience, so each goat would have 50-65 lbs each for the trip out, and I would have my 28lbs of gear plus the antlers on my back.) At first, I thought I would have to sacrifice a lot to get my gear weight down that much, but that weight still includes; pistol, range finder, binos, calls, bugle, rope, warm clothes, rain gear, water filter, 0 degree sleeping bag, thermarest, 1 man tent, first aid kit, boning knives and game bags, and even a small fishing kit (as there are some great lakes to fish where I hunt, and makes for a nice afternoon diversion after a long morning of hunting) It only includes about a liter of water, as I mentioned I also carry a water filter and am always within a half mile of some spring, lake, or creek where I hunt. Ive got about a pound of food for each day, over 2000 calories per day. It took me all summer and a lot of trial and error to come up with my current gear list, but it was worth it.
Wow, that is impressive. I did a 3 day hunt this fall and had right at 50lbs. That was with 2 liters of water but still you are almost 50% lighter than I am. I need work! I know I had more than a lb of food a day. I did realize this year that I don't eat much when I am working really hard so I likely could have packed about half as much food as I did.

I have a late season archery hunt that would be perfect for goats. Wish I had my herd up and running! Maybe next year.
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  #118  
Old 10-31-2011, 07:48 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Wa. State
Posts: 75
Re: Pack Goats

Excellent thread,

I use pack goats too, so far to make back packing better, next year I do intend to take mine hunting with me, I am in NE Wa.

There is a good list group on yahoogroups, called Packgoats, but there is a much more informative forum at The Pack Goat Forum, google it, a lot of excellent info there and a great many photos. We are having a four day seminar in July not far from Ranier, be about 70 people there, most with goats.

The forum members are literally from all across the country but many of the members are in Wa, Id, Mt, Or, Ut and Co. And many of us hunt.

I have heard of brush goats being a vector for diseases but never knew of any actual pack goats carrying anything. Most of us with our goats make sure they are up on all shots and give them good care year round.

Most common breeds are the dairy breeds, especially Saanens and Alpines and their crosses, but all dairy breeds are used. Over the last 7-8 years a few folks have found that about a 1/4 of meat goat, Kiko or Boer puts more muscle on the frame and we get ultimately bigger wethers that can carry more and do it easier. I have one Boer cross but am breeding my does to a Kiko in the spring as they have bigger frames then the Boer and are longer legged.

Come over to the forum and take a look if you are wanting more information, there is a LOT there in old threads and folks are always glad to handle questions.

Enjoy,

Jake
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  #119  
Old 10-31-2011, 09:13 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Rigby Idaho
Posts: 39
Re: Pack Goats

Ive had a few guys ask about what it takes to transport goats easily, so I figured I would give my quick two cents. Honestly, the ease of transport is one of the things I enjoy most about using goats vs other pack animals. My favorite is a simple stock rack that sits in the back of my half ton short bed truck. I routinely haul 6 full size horned goats in that space, and have never had any problem. Cost of my stock rack was only a couple hundred bucks used. My second favorite is a 'truckbed' trailer made from an old ford longbed pickup with a shell on it. With a divider down the middle, I can easily get 6 goats inside, and they travel out of the weather as well. My truck only seats 6, so if my group is larger than six, I take the F350 van (ie on scout outings) which I will pull the truckbed trailer behind it. My third favorite option is my 20 ft double axle enclosed trailer, it is large enough that I can take two or even three strings of goats and gear (12-18 goats) with no problem. I have even transported a string of goats and a couple llamas at the same time in it. I have tie down rings on the floor every couple feet, so I can tie the leads to the floor during transport. The truckbed trailer is lighter and easier on gas, but it is easier to put one goat at a time into the bigger trailer, tie them to their own tiedown spot, and then go get the next goat. Sometimes its a bit of a hassle with the smaller trailer to have to load one, turn around to load the next, only to have the first decide he wants to jump back out. With the shell on the truckbed trailer, its too small to climb in with the goats to tie them off. The truck bed trailer usually works best with a partner to help. My favorite option, the stock rack in my truck (which could also be put into a truckbed trailer without a shell) works well because I can load one goat at a time, tie them off to the stock rack, then get out and load the next. I have no problem loading or unloading six goats all by myself in a minute or two. Plus, a stock rack or a truck bed trailer is a far cheaper upfront investment than is a 20ft enclosed sled trailer. The only issue I have with hauling the goats in the back of my truck is that there isnt anywhere to put all my gear and stuff. For that though, I have a hitch mounted rack that I can stack rubbermade type tubs on. My hitch will easily support several hundred pounds, so I can put pretty much all the gear there that I need. A simple stockrack option can be devised by using the welded fence panels that can be purchased at any farm and ranch store, then cut a length for each of the two sides of the truck, one for the back and one for the front, then wire the corners together. Certainly this configuration wouldnt be strong enough to haul cattle, but for goats it would be perfect, cheap, and easy to remove when not in use.
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