By Michael Mulligan for Get Out Magazine
Jul 14, 2021
Horsewomen and horsemen of the Valley, including die-hard mule devotees, can now claim membership in a chapter of the national organization of the Back Country Horsemen. Founded in 1973, this group thrives in 32 states and is dedicated to perpetuating the commonsense use and enjoyment of horses in America’s backcountry and wilderness. BCH works to ensure that public lands remain open to recreational stock use and assists the agencies responsible for the management of public lands in meeting their goals. Members volunteer to clear and repair trails and to undertake projects such as building pathways and bridges to protect wetlands. Devoted to “leave no trace” principles, BCH and the Teton Valley chapter are committed to keeping our backcountry and wilderness lands wild. This past summer, in conjunction with the Forest Service, members of TVBCH restored parts of three different wilderness trails and linked arms and loppers with HAPI Trails to clear their riding trail. Experts also partnered with HAPI Trails to offer a day of instruction to members and the public on how to pack and camp with stock.
Teton Valley is a historical stronghold of Western horsemanship. In recent years, though, our Valley has experienced exceptional growth: an explosion of home construction and home rentals; the building of several golf courses; burgeoning interest in bicycling both on the roads and in the backcountry; the advent of electric bikes, as well as the long popular use of motorized two- and four-wheelers...