MONO COUNTY, Calif. – Pack Trips by mule and horseback in Mono County are a unique and memorable way to experience the wilderness of California’s Eastern Sierra, a tradition in the region dating back to the early 1800s.
Ten different pack stations, and one historic guest ranch, are located throughout Mono County, and provide the opportunity to get into a different part of the region’s spectacular backcountry without shouldering a heavy backpack – an ideal way to access remote high alpine terrain and pristine, rarely-visited lakes, meadows and valleys.
"There is no better way to see the high country wilderness areas than on a pack trip,” said Jennifer Roeser, owner of McGee Creek Pack Station. “The best part is that multi-generational families can camp together and not worry about carrying all their food, gear and supplies in heavy packs.”
Joining a pack trip, folks can choose between riding in the saddle, or hiking the trail themselves but having their camping gear and supplies transported by pack mules. With mules hauling the weight, pack trips provide a lot more luxury than normal backpacking outings – which means that participants enjoy significantly more comfortable camps and gourmet meals while still experiencing the rugged and magnificent beauty of the Sierra Nevada high country.
For those wanting more independence and solitude, hikers can arrange a meet-up with the pack outfit of their choice during a backpacking trip. This affords hikers more time in the wild without the need to return to civilization for food supplies, and makes it possible to carry a much lighter-weight backpack.
Rock Creek Pack Station and Frontier Pack Train offer unforgettable pack trips to view wild mustang herds in the remote Pizona region in May and June, and Hunewill Ranch, a working cattle ranch for more than 125 years, provides an authentic ranch experience for guests, as well as backcountry trips in the beautiful Bridgeport Valley.
Only have a day? Join in on a half-day and full-day ride with any of the ten pack stations in Mono County (not available at Hunewill Ranch).
Mono County offers a wide variety of high alpine options with horseback riding and pack outfit operations throughout the Eastern Sierra – from the Antelope Valley, Sonora Pass, Virginia Lakes and Bridgeport in the north part of the county, to Mammoth Lakes, Convict Lake, McGee Creek and Rock Creek in the south.
Find a complete list of outfitters, please visit www.MonoCounty.org and click on “Summer Activities,” then “Horseback Riding” – or call Mono County Tourism at 800-845-7922 for trip planning assistance.
About Mono County: Located approximately 315 miles north of Los Angeles, and 280 miles east of San Francisco, Mono County accesses the east entrance to Yosemite National Park and beckons visitors in all seasons. Whether taking advantage of convenient direct flights on Alaska or United Airlines from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), San Diego (SAN), San Francisco (SFO) and Denver (DEN) to Mammoth Yosemite Airport (MMH), or arriving by car on the all-weather US Highway 395, the Eastern Sierra’s vast playground is an easily reached destination. US Highway 395, which traverses Mono County from north to south, is a State Designated Scenic Byway offering motorists tremendous vistas right from the steering wheel and countless side-roads, hiking trails, lakes, and roadside villages to explore. For more information or to request guides, visit MonoCounty.org or call 800-845-7922.