Listed below are the items that we feel you should wear and bring for a safe and comfortable trip in the Alberta Rockies. Please bear in mind that the alpine weather can change quickly and without warning, and the night-time temperature can drop below freezing even in the summer. During the day it can reach temperatures in the high twenties.
These items are available to rent if you don’t have your own:
Weight of Gear
Because everything must be loaded on pack-horses, guests must pack their gear in 1 standard sized duffel bag as shown above, weighing no more than 25 lbs. 11 kg). Check out below what you can carry in your saddle bags.
Your trailhorse will have 2 saddlebags tied to the saddle. One is for your personal items to carry on the trail, such as camera, sun protection, water bottle, extra layer of clothes, etc. The other bag is reserved for “group items” such as lunch or first aid kit. Your rainwear will also travel with you tied behind the saddle.
We put a couple of useful information for you together and suggest to print it out and take it with you. Click here for print version.
We are delighted that you will be joining us for a horseback vacation. The purpose of this summary is to advise you of preparations that we recommend you make, a few things you need to bring, and to encourage you to contact us with any questions or specific needs you may have that will enable us to make your trip more enjoyable.
Arrival Details. We ask that you arrive in Calgary on the day posted as the start day for the trip at your own expense, preferably in the early afternoon. In order to coordinate the pick up we need to know your arrival details. Typically a group pick up is organized in the afternoon of your posted first trip day. Should you plan to arrive in Calgary a few days early we can arrange pick up from a downtown hotel as well. The Ranch phone number is (local) 403-949-3329. Please call us if you are lost or need to get in touch with us on your arrival day.
At the Ranch. The shuttle van will bring you to the ranch, where you will meet the guides and have the opportunity to get acquainted. We can answer any last minute questions you might have at that occasion. After dinner you will have time to prepare for the next morning. A kit bag, sleeping bag and mat will be provided if you need it. We will match you with a horse, talk about the route for the coming week and give advise on important gear to bring along.
Accommodation. The first and last night of all trips will be in our recently opened guesthouse. There is a large common area, full kitchen, 2 full bath rooms and 5 bedrooms. Should you prefer a single bed room please inquire in advance. The surcharge is $20/person per night.
Accommodation on the Trail (most trips). We sleep in large canvas wall tents (up to 7 ppl per tent) or lean-tos to enjoy the night sky whenever practical. Sometimes we are treated to a display of the Northern lights by doing so. If privacy is a major concern for you it is best tell us early so we can plan accordingly. We have found that most people are happy to sleep in close proximity to each other when in the wild. Most camps have several tents set up allowing the group to split up. Should you consider bringing your own lightweight tent please contact us beforehand. Please consider that everything has to be loaded on packhorses therefore we are limited in what we can take into camp. Your total weight allowance is 25 lbs/person (11 kg) (not including what you wear and carry on your saddle horse). If you have luggage that is not required for the horse trip you may leave that at the Ranch.
Gear and Equipment. We posted a suggested kit list on our website to help you prepare better for the trip. We provide the following gear if you need it: a warm sleeping bag, sleeping mat and sturdy duffle bag that will fit into the pack bags on the packhorses. You can also rent rain gear for $5/day. The duffle bag with all your gear that you don’t need during the day should be no heavier than 25 lbs (11kg). In addition you will have 2 saddlebags on your horse for things you need during the day (camera, sunscreen, sun glasses, extra layer, rain gear, etc).
Climate and Temperature. During the riding season of June to September, temperatures will range widely, with the hottest daytime temperatures reaching 30 C (85 F). We are riding at elevations ranging from 1400 m (4400′) to well above the tree line at 2700m (8400′), So wide fluctuations in temperature can be expected. This region always cools off at night, and frequently experiences frost even in mid-summer, and so please adhere to the attached kit list. We always take our rain gear with us on the saddle, so don’t pack it in with your kit. Even if it doesn’t rain, it may be necessary to cut the wind when we’re above the tree line. The sun is quite strong in the mountains due to higher elevations – please protect yourself with sunscreen or long sleeve shirts.
Medical Conditions and Food preferences. Please inform your trail guide of any medical conditions you have or medications you are taking. It also important for us to know about food allergies and preferences you may have BEFORE the trip.
Wildlife. The areas we ride through are habitats for a wide range of wild animals from deer, bighorn sheep, moose and mountain goats to black and grizzly bears, cougars and wolfs. Have you camera handy as we often encounter wildlife on the trail. In general, none of these animals mean trouble to us as we travel in groups on horseback. We are careful not to attract bears in camp by hoisting the food on a high tree. Please DO NOT store any food within your personal gear but hand it to the guide at the end of the day.
We hope that you will enjoy your stay with us. We will do our best to make this an unforgettable holiday for you,
Neil & Undine Maclaine, Moose Mountain Horseback Adventures
Reception at the Ranch with a Barbecue
In the higher mountain regions there can be snow fall even in summer.