Elephant Trekking 

A highlight of the Tented Camp are the elephants. We were taught to mount the elephants in three ways. The first is asking the elephant to lie down. This is hardest on the elephant. We only did that once. The second is asking the elephant to lift up her front leg and help you climb up. And the final is asking her to bow her head and then jumping over it. Brent proved best in class at jumping over Yuki, his elephant’s, head.

  
Yuki has traveled to Japan twice and to the Philippines. She’s much happier living at the foundation where the most traveling she has to do is a stroll to the river.

  
I trained with and road Phuang Pet. She was turned over to the foundation by her family who couldn’t afford to feed her, but they didn’t want her to starve. 

You’ll notice there are no saddles. Saddles aren’t good for the elephants. During our training we had the rope you see in the video, but during our jungle trek the next day we were completely bareback just like a traditional mahout. 

  
We had to sit right up on their neck/head. That’s the best place for the elephant to carry you. I leaned a lot about the economy around elephants in Thailand.

At the end of any ride the elephants go to the river to drink and cool off. Yuki is very silly and she loves to spray all of us with water. 

   
 And here’s Brent’s selfie taken while a top Yuki.  

 

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