Bill, are you also going to take the burros? We haven't heard about them for a while!
Thank you for asking...
You know, when I found this forum that was my plan. I learned enough here to lighten my load enough to carry it all myself so that hasn't been a priority since. I really didn't expect that to happen.
Right now I don't have a way to transport the burros to the trailhead. It's been that way since shortly after I got them. We had a big Ford Expedition and a horse trailer back then (we used to have a horse). First we sold the Ford, then we sold the horse trailer. I had a little Suzuki Samurai and I bought a utility trailer to haul the donks but the Samurai wouldn't pull them, actually, it wouldn't stop. I finally sold the trailer, then got tired of driving the Samurai and bought a little Ford pickup that can tow the burros, but I need a trailer now.
One of these days I will get things all lined up and get the burros on the trail, but we still go for hikes in the forest behind the barnyard and pasture and they love it.
I'm really looking forward to bringing Ruby with me this year too though. She's fits in the truck with me and she's great off trail. She's very protective too, not aggressive at all towards people, but while we're in the forest out back she runs circles around me, just like my old dog Tucker used to do, checking the perimeter and making sure it's all safe for me. And when we're just sitting there she'll catch a whiff of something and jump up and sound the alert and go check it out if need be. She's just fun to hang out with.
She's the only dog we have that will go into the barnyard alone. The others are all afraid of the burros, and for good reason. I've seen those burros smack cats and dogs around quite a few times. I'm not sure what happened, but those burros show Ruby a great deal of respect now. I've never seen her be vicious to anything, but I have seen her growl at those donks if they get too close to her, and they just don't even do that anymore now. They give her all the room she wants. If Ruby follows me when I feed the burros all the other dogs will too, but they never go back there without her.
She's a good dog and should be fun to have along backpacking. I've hiked with a quite a few dogs, and camped with quite a few more. I've only backpacked with a few. Some of them have been great, and some have been real pains, most were just dogs being dogs, but I'm pretty sure Ruby will be right up there with the best of them.