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I'm about six foot four, and my weight varies, sometimes being on the wrong side of 90 kg. Am I likely to be too heavy or too tall to ride a camel for health, animal welfare, operator legal liability or any other reasons?

Likewise, is height or weight likely to be an issue for horse-riding? I've heard that Mongolian horses are fairly short.

I've ridden horses and camels before, but only a couple of times. I plan riding as a single-day experience, not a multi-day one.

While checking the limits for camel riding, I came across http://www.redsuncamels.com.au/index.php?EXP=166 , which is for Australia, not Mongolia, having a restriction of 95kg for an individual and 165 kg for a couple

As additional questions, is body tone an issue? (If that is an issue, then it might indicate I'm ok, because I would have better body tone than someone a foot shorter with the same weight) Also, can I trust Mongolian tour operators to be both competent with regards to animal health, and reasonably concerned about animal welfare?

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It's not usually about tone, you could have a six pack and still weigh 120kg, look at a lot of rugby players! And the camel/horse still has to lift it and carry it, no matter what shape you are.

It looks like you'll be ok, for the most part, as long as you don't go too far past that 90kg. Some sources:

  • Visit Mongolia cites the max weight for a horse at 100kg (220 pounds)
  • a blog about camels cites their 'comfortable' capacity at 150kg. This explains how I've seen two tourists riding a camel in the past - if 90kg was a limit, the camel would have been in dire straits!

It's interesting to note your source, Red Sun Camels specifies 95kg per person and 165kg per couple. Given Australia is pretty good for animal safety, I'd consider this a good guideline. If the company you use is trying to put more than that on a camel you're on, it's time to refuse!

Finally, a reddit thread about some people being too heavy for camels. There's a lot of fluff about obesity etc in there as well though. There's definitely some views there that camels should not take more than one person, however.

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