Burns Llama Trailblazers Champion Working Llamas
Burns Llama Trailblazers Champion Working Llamas


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SE OREGON LLAMA PACKING

DATES AND TRIALS
Every year Burns Llama Trailblazers hosts a two day PLTA Pack Trial alternating between Myrtle Creek on the Malheur National Forest and an area we refer to as 'Becky's Backyard' on BLM land near Burns, Oregon. This year the event will be held at Becky's Backyard and consist of trials for all levels held twice, once on Saturday and again on Sunday April 25th & 26th, 2015 at 'Becky's Backyard' near Burns, Oregon. Basic, Advanced, Master and Extreme individual and string trials will be run.PLTA Myrtle Creek llama pack trial: llamas in the ponderosa pine forest

LOCATION & AMENITIES
Burns is located in southeast Oregon. The combined population of it and neighboring Hines is nearly 5000, making the twin cities the population center and county seat of vast Harney County. As such it has appropriate amenities including two large grocery stores, a BIG R farm store, a builder's supply, Les Scwab Tire Center, auto dealerships and numerous shops (and the best quilt shop for 200 miles). Most last minute needs can be supplied here.

ACCOMMODATIONS
Burns, Oregon is a way-station on the long drive between population centers. As such it has numerous motels and a Good Sam Campground. Forest camping is available at Joaquin Miller Campground, an equestrian site complete with corrals for your stock. It is located about 15 miles north of Burns and, although a beautiful site, gets very little use. A nice dispersed campsite (no amenities) is located half a mile south of the trailhead. It has room for multiple large trailers and vehicles. You will find links to area businesses at the Harney County Chamber of Commerce.

WEATHER
Weather in Harney County is highly variable. Expect snow any time of year. We typically have one day of snow or cold weather and one day of hot weather (80 degrees or over) during the pack trials. Layering clothing and carrying plenty of it along with sunscreen and a hat with a wide brim are highly recommended.


MYRTLE CREEK PACK TRIALS

ACCESS
The Myrtle Creek Trailhead is reached via paved forest service road. Parking at the trailhead is limited but can accommodate pickups with trailers. To reach the trailhead travel north from Burns on US Highway 395 approximately 16 miles to Forest Service road 31. Travel west on the 31 road to Forest Service spur road 3100-226. The trailhead is located at the end of the spur road. A Printable map of the trail is available at Myrtle Creek Trail, Malheur National Forest.

Llama Pack Trials at Myrtle Creek use trail, logging tracks and cross country routes. THE SITE
Myrtle Creek Trail is located on the Malheur National Forest about 30 miles north of Burns. The pack trial courses are centered around scenic Myrtle Creek as it flows through grassy ponderosa pine forest in a deep canyon. The trials use Myrtle Creek Trail, well-defined elk trails, and old logging trails and roads. Elevation at the trailhead is 5400 feet.

While the Basic and Advanced trials stay at lower elevations along the creek, the Master and Extreme climb to about 6000 feet. Despite what may seem like high elevations to some, this is not an alpine zone. All trials remain well within the ponderosa pine ecosystem.

The map at left shows topograpy and routes used by the courses.


The Myrtle Creek Basic Course follows a maintained hiking trail along Myrtle Creek from the trail head to the creek crossing and back. Lunch is generally taken at the flowery meadow near the crossing. Elevation loss and gain is 400 feet. Elevation at the trailhead is 5388 feet while the creek crossing lies at 5054 feet. The trail drops to the creek crossing via two inclines of about 190 feet each with relatively gentle grades of nine to fourteen percent. The course length is three miles.

Total elevation loss and gain is 400 feet


The Myrtle Creek Advanced Course also follows along Myrtle Creek to the crossing and back but it continues farther as well as climbing away from the creek via the West Myrtle Trail. The entire length is on maintained Forest Service hiking trail. The steepest climb is about 0.2 miles at a 17% grade. The highest elevation reached is 5420 feet. Total distance is five miles with a total elevation loss and gain of about 850 feet.

Total elevation loss and gain is 850 feet


The Myrtle Creek Master Course climbs out of the canyon and well away from Myrtle Creek. It uses cross country routes, old logging roads and elk trails as well as the forest service hiking trail. The route includes a visit to scenic Crane Flat and an interesting juniper scabland. The highest elevation reached lies at 6000 feet while the lowest is at about 4990 feet. The longest single climb is about 900 feet across a third of a mile at a 16% grade. Total distance is about 8.25 miles while total elevation loss and gain is just over 1500 feet.

Total elevation loss and gain is 1528 feet


The Myrtle Creek Extreme Course follows most of the Masters course, but when the Masters return to the trailhead via the Myrtle Creek trail, the Extreme candidates continue downstream along Myrtle Creek before crossing the creek and adding another hill climb. This final loop of the route is almost all either cross-country or on elk trails. The high elevation reached is the same as for the Master's at 6000 feet. The lowest elevation is about 4975 feet. The added long incline climbs 780 feet in about half a mile at a 16% grade. Total elevation loss and gain is just over 2500 feet while the total length of the course is about 10.5 miles

Total elevation loss and gain is 1528 feet


BECKY'S BACKYARD PACK TRIALS
Coming soon: This portion of our page is under construction.

For more information contact Anne Sheeter at sheeterg@hotmail.com or (541) 573-2628

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Last website update: 29OCT14
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