Canada Cattle Ranch riding holiday in Canada - Far and Ride
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Canada Cattle Ranch, Canada




Programme


• Ranch stay

 

Reviews





 

Horses



Type of horses:

Quarter horses, appaloosa and paints.

Nature of horses:

Calm, obedient and surefooted

Height of horses:

14.3hh - 16hh

Weight limit:

105kg (heavier riders may be accommodated if they are experienced)

Tack type:

Western

 

Travel Advice



Please ensure you read the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) advice before you travel.
 

Ride Description

This authentic working guest ranch is nestled in the beautiful Saskatchewan river valley, along the shores of Lake Diefenbaker, in the heart of Canadian cattle ranching country. Guests can enjoy a taste of the cowboy way of life with a true ranching adventure, featuring lots of hours in the saddle each day, on the ranch's well-schooled Quarter horses, Appaloosa and paints. Become truly immersed in the culture and feel the slow pace of the land whilst riding across the seemingly endless rolling prairies.

You will be welcomed to the family ranch by owner George, who has been hosting guests and "city-folk" at his ranch since 1996. All guests are encouraged to participate in the seasonal and daily cattle and ranch work during their stay. You may need to help check and move cows from pasture to pasture. Or it may sometimes be necessary to help gather and catch some of the young calves to administer treatments and brand or tag them. Although the daily work can be long and often challenging, the team here certainly know how to relax and unwind after a satisfying day of working the range. You'll enjoy a good lunch break each day, with coffee cooked over a fire and a nice snooze in the sun to regain your energy for the afternoon's activities. In the summer months, you may pack up the horses for an overnight trip and camp out under the stars: a cowboy dream! At certain times of the year, there will also be chances to get involved in some of the special events of a working ranch calendar. Events such as "branding week" in early June, when the young calves of the year are marked with the ranch brand to show where they have come from. Or the "Fall round-up" the largest cattle round up of the year when the cows are brought back to the ranch from their summer pastures to be counted, checked, vaccinated, sorted and prepared for sale if necessary. Guests looking for a truly authentic and hands-on ranch experience would do well to visit during one of these events.

See Programmes.

 

Food & Accommodation

During your stay, you will be accommodated in one of six comfortable wood cabins decorated in true western ranch style. Any cowboy is sure to feel at home here. Each cosy log cabin features 2 double beds and a private bathroom with shower. There are also two larger 1.5 storey cabins with a loft/mezzanine floor, suitable for families or groups of friends. These sleep up to 6 guests in each, with 2 double beds and 2 bunk beds. All bedding, bath towels and basic toiletries are provided for your stay and rooms are cleaned each week, or with each arrival.

Most guests are happy to share cabin accommodation. However, single occupancy can be offered at an additional cost if you would prefer not to share with other guests.

The ranch has its own private saloon with pool table, table football and darts for the evenings. There is also an outdoor hot tub which guests are able to use at any time.

There is no Wifi at the ranch - the closest available internet connection is at another ranch 3km away. You will be able to truly disconnect during your stay.

Food at the ranch is hearty and plentiful, with the opportunity to sample the ranch raised, melt-in-your-mouth Canadian beef, as well as a host of true to form ranch meals, with campfire cookouts and cowboy coffee brewed over the fire.

Breakfast is truly the most important meal of the day here, large portions and extensive options, with scrambled eggs, toast, ham, fried potatoes, fruit, juice, and coffee available.

Lunches are generally much lighter, consisting of sandwiches and snacks packed in your saddle bag and eaten on the move or whilst enjoying a break on the grass, listening to the sounds of nature, horses and cattle all around you.

Dinners are then prepared and enjoyed back at the ranch cookhouse each evening, with all guests and ranch staff eating side-by-side, sharing stories from the days' adventures.

Beers are available from the Saloon bar in the evening, simply write down what you take and pay for it at the end of your stay. If you would like to bring wine, spirits or soft drinks with you then you are most welcome. The cabins have small fridges these can be kept in.

 

Activities

Whilst at the ranch, the main activity will be horse riding which is a way of life here. Everyone rides and so it is assumed that everyone visiting will want to ride as well. Guests of all levels and backgrounds are welcome to take part in the daily activities, with lessons offered for those who would like to learn new skills, as well as how to handle their ranch horse.

When not in the saddle, there are a number of other activities to take part in. During the summer you can swim, canoe, water ski on the lake below the ranch (roughly 150 meters away) with the ranch’s own little motorboat. There is also the chance to go fishing on the lake if you wished.

The ranch covers a large area which can be great for exploring on foot. Among the rolling hills and pristine wilderness, you may see deer, coyote, skunks, owls, eagles and pelicans. Or you could find your own private spot on the 15 km (9 mile) long sandy beach at the edge of the lake.

The day often ends with a little rope-play (lassoing), a visit to the ranch saloon for a drink or just gathering around the campfire to recount stories or hear country songs. Sometimes you can visit the White Bear Saloon nearby, which is famous in the region for its unique decor, for hot wings and drinks.

The region around the ranch has a very old ranching tradition. People often arrange joint excursions to local rodeo competitions, where cowboys test their skills and bravery, competing to see who can stay on the bucking horse the longest. There are also many excursions for those who are interested in nature and western history.

 

Further Details

Languages: English & German

Health requirements: No special health requirements

Age limit: 5 and above for riding (must be happy to ride a horse)

Tuition: Some basic tuition in the arena, but otherwise you will learn as you do on the trail!

Included: Accommodation, full board meals, soft drinks & riding.

Not included: Flights, insurance, transfers, alcoholic drinks & gratuities.

 

Travel Information

Saskatoon airport is the closest to the ranch, at approx. 2 hours driving time. Transfers are offered for guests arriving on Saturday, Monday or Thursday during the week. Transfers are NOT available outside of these days.

On arrival, you will be met at the airport by 8 pm at the very latest, depending on the flight time of the last arriving guest that day.

On departure, you will return to Saskatoon from 10:15 am, according to the time of the first departing flight that day.

Transfers can be booked through Far and Ride, but paid for directly in cash on arrival. The costs for the round trip are as below;

1-3 pax: CAD$189 per person
4+ pax: CAD$157.50 per person

Arrival and departure can be scheduled for any day of the week, but you will need to have your own car in order to reach the ranch outside of the allocated transfer days. Alternatively, travel is available by bus from Saskatoon to Kyle or from Calgary to Swift Current. The ranch team can pick up guests in either town for a very small fee. For bus schedule from or to Saskatoon - www.stcbus.com and from or to Calgary - www.greyhound.ca

Airport: Saskatoon International Airport

Alternative Airport: Calgary International Airport

 

Programme


Ranch stay



This ranch is able to offer a lot of riding for those who wish to take part. At times you might be working with cattle, other times just relaxing on a ride across the prairie. All guests are welcome to participate in the work that needs to be done with the cattle and on the ranch. However, this is not a requirement and you can be as hands-on or hands-off as you wish. The amount and type of work required will vary across the year, with some weeks being busier than others. However, every day it will be necessary to check the cattle to ensure they are safe and well or move them if they require fresh grazing, so there is always plenty to be getting on with.

In general, your daily routine will go as follows: After breakfast, it will be time to round up the horses from the huge pasture for the day's work. This part will be done by the staff with the help of a quad-bike but is a wonderful spectacle to watch. After a while, you'll spot the herd coming trotting up from the lake or down from the hills to the corral at the centre of the ranch. After meeting your horse for the week, you will be able to take part in grooming and saddling up before it's time off for a full day of riding. Roaming across the range, you will check the cattle, maybe help to fix damaged fences or search for missing cows & calves. On a normal day, you can expect to ride for between 5-6 hours per day. Sometimes it can be more if the work calls for it. The pace of the ride will vary but will be slow overall, as your horse will need to keep his energy for the long and challenging days on the ranch.

Those who do not have much riding experience will receive basic lessons in western riding and horse handling at no extra cost. Everyone will get the opportunity to learn how to correctly throw a lasso and to work with the livestock; be it horses or cows. The more interest you show, the more you can learn!

For those interested in a real hands-on experience, then look out for the special events on the ranching calendar:

Season Opening: The first week of each season, around the end of May, will see the arrival of this year's new calves on the ranch - plenty of opportunities to check on the herds and ensure the safety of the new and precious arrivals.

Branding Week: From the beginning of June, it's time to brand all the new cattle. Here you will have plenty of opportunities to drive and rope cattle, helping to catch the new arrivals for branding and administration of any required medications.

Fall Round-up: During the first week of October it's time to bring all the cattle down from their summer pastures to be counted, checked, vaccinated, sorted and prepared for sale if necessary. Again, plenty of opportunity for cattle driving, roping and handling of the livestock.



Minimum group size: 1
Maximum group size: 16
Ability description: Novice to experienced - please note that this is slow paced riding with just the occasional brief canter. Nearly all of the riding is at a walking pace, often one behind the other, which is ideal for enjoying the scenery and the company but not for those riders looking to go at different paces.
Type of ride: Cattle ranch
Total riding time: full days: roughly 5-6 hours per day - sometimes more
Departure dates: 2018: Saturday to Saturday from the 19th May to the 13th October.
Shorter stays may be possible on request.

*Fall Round-up: 6th-13th October 2018
 
Pricing: 2018:

Shared/double room: £863 per person
Single room: £1068 per person
Children (aged 8-12 years): £589 sharing room
Children (aged 5-7): £478 sharing room

All prices include 7 nights accommodation, all meals from dinner on arrival day to breakfast on departure day, soft drinks with meals, use of the ranch facilities, as well as daily riding and cattle work on the ranch as required.