Originally Posted by ~*~anebel~*~
I think the oil is still your best bet.
2 1/2 gallons would be enough for all the horses for one day versus a pelleted feed or something that if you're feeding around 2 cups (which is half the recommended daily for most of them) that's 44 cups a day which is over 3 gallons and you're getting fewer calories. Go with the full recommended daily 4 cups and then you're at over 6 gallons per day. As opposed to feeding 2/5 of a cup of oil to each horse a day and that's only 2.5 gallons per day. And if they only need 1/4 of a cup per day, the one jug will last you almost 2 days.
There are just two problems with this...
#1 the weight - but that said, I still need to look into how much it REALLY weighs (like, per calorie if you will), so maybe it's not too bad.
#2 I need to find something that can be pre-mixed and ready to go when we buy it (IDEALLY), or at least simple for us to mix up in big batches at the beginning of the season. It sounds silly, but when there is a large string of horses to round up (which includes finding them in the morning which can sometimes take hours), saddle, pack, etc along with breaking/setting up camp, making meals, etc etc ect that comes along with being out there each day.... stuff needs to be kept to a minimum. It doesn't seem like a lot of extra work, but I can for sure see guides neglecting it.
That said, I'll definitely keep it in mind because you're right - as far as calories go, it's pretty ideal!