Wyoming Working Ranch riding holiday in USA - Far and Ride
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Wyoming Working Ranch, USA




Programme


• Ranch Stay

 

Reviews



If I could take time off work I would already be booking my flight back to work at the ranch for the summer. Long, hard and sometimes tough days but I loved it all (plenty of riding)! My favourite memory was the last cattle drive late in the afternoon, blue sky, sun shining, everything went just right, horses were great, everyone laughing and joking all the way home. I rode various horses, all were different but good. They were happy to discuss which horses you prefer and what kind of horse you liked. I couldn't ask for better hosts and guides, they really make you feel part of their life. Recommended for the 'outdoorsy' type. Excellent!

Katherine R.
The five days at Black Hills were very nice. We enjoyed staying together with the family and sharing their table - Brandy is a wonderful cook! Our son had a lot of fun feeding the young cow named Annabelle and driving the mule. We went fishing on the ranch's lake and the trout we caught tasted very good. I was shown wonderful places by riding together with Mike, the cowboy on the ranch - we enjoyed moving cows, changing fences and practicing roping. The Black Hills area is a really peaceful place.

Lydia Z.
 

Horses



Type of horses:

Quarter horses, Paints. Appaloosas, Gaited, Draft Cross, TB

Nature of horses:

Responsive

Height of horses:

14-16 hh

Weight limit:

90 kg but 100g may be possible for experienced riders

Tack type:

Western

 

Travel Advice



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

Ride Description

This is a family owned and operated working cattle ranch which is situated on the grounds of an old ghost town in North Eastern Wyoming. The closest town, Hulett, is 18 miles away on a gravel road. About 150 years ago the first settlers, called "homesteaders", came to the area. The small farmers were up against the rough climate, down-and-dirty cattle barons, hostile Indian tribes and the depression of the early 20th century. Many gave up and left.

Here they work livestock in timbered canyon and rim rock country as well as in open sage brush praire. Since 2003 they have been inviting guests to share their life with them. Four generations live and work on the ranch. Today they work cattle on their ranch as well as on neighbours properties. The old buildings and machinery, though bare witness of times that nowadays we only know from movies.

The ranch have many confident and surefooted quarter horses, paints and mixes that carry the guests safely over the rough terrain. They live outside all year round and only get extra feed when they have to work very hard or the snow is too deep. They are healthy - physically as well as mentally. Jack rabbits or turkey chicks that move right under their feet usually don't scare them. They are "cowy" which means they like to chase cattle. Some are beautiful, some not. But they all like people and that's what's most important to your hosts.

Aside from horses and cattle - the reason why they continue to ranch - there are lots of other animals : dogs, cats, sheep, goats, donkey as well as ducks and geese. And, of course, around there are wild animals like deer, antelope, bob cats, porcupines, skunks, raccoons, prairie dogs, turkeys, eagles, beavers, coyotes, snakes, mountain lions and many more.

See Programmes.

 

Food & Accommodation

The Lodge has five comfortable rustic bedrooms, each with their own bathroom. (Towels, hair dryer, soap and shower gel are provided). There is also one cabin which sleeps up to three. A furnace and a wood stove provide warmth on cooler days. On hot days, the central air conditioning can be turned on. There is a washer and dryer.

After returning from their rides the guests can sit on the balcony with a view of the Missouri Buttes, play a round of pool or relax in the hot tub under stars. Adventurous souls can ride their horses down to the lake and stay in the tipi for a night or two!

The ranch has an open kitchen which is attached to the dining and living area. Here they serve a full homemade breakfast and hearty supper and - if you don't eat out on the trail - a lighter lunch. Snacks and drinks are available for everyone at all times. You need to bring your own alcohol or sodas but if taking a transfer, it is possible to stock up at Walmart on the way to the ranch. Once a week if the weather allows, there will be a BBQ at the lake.The owners and staff share most meals with the guests. Some diets can be catered for on request but it is not possible to accommodate vegans.

 

Activities

When time and the season allow you will visit rodeos, country dances and horse auctions with your hosts. If you want to combine a ranch vacation with travelling though the Wild West, you should plan a trip to Yellowstone National Park in Western Wyoming, the Badlands in South Dakota or the battlefield on the Little Big Horn where in the 19th century General Custer and Chief Sitting Bull fought one last big battle.

Just half an hour away is the first National Monument, Devils Tower. The ancient volcanic vent which was exposed by millions of years of erosion is the setting of many movies and a holy place for the Lakota Indians. The old gold digger town of Deadwood, the Harley Davidson mecca Sturgis and the famous presidential heads of Mount Rushmore can be reached in two hours or less.

 

Further Details

Languages: English & German

Health requirements: None .

Age limit: 16-70

Tuition: No

Included: Full board accommodation, lodging and meals, taxes, 10% gratuities, riding and all other ranch activities, and towels. Saddle bags, water bottles and slickers are provided.

Not included: Transfer from airport (can be arranged and the cost added to your invoice), alcohol and sodas (can be bought en-route).

 

Travel Information

The ranch is about 2.5 hours (100 miles) away. We can arrange a return transfer for $150 per person. It is a 5 hours round journey. Guests can be picked up until 6pm on a Saturday (from the airport or motel in Rapid City). Return transfers can leave the ranch at 6am for those with early flights. Sometimes guests may have to wait a while so everyone can be transferred together. Many guests prefer to arrive the night before and are picked up about noon from their hotel so they can get some shopping done. Most Saturdays you will arrive back at the ranch for supper and departure days they usually do not leave until 8.00 am Guests with rental cars can arrive after 2pm and leave by 11am on departure day. Arrival day is Saturday only but departure can be Saturday or Wednesday.

Airport: Rapid City

 

Programme


Ranch Stay



Riding is in the centre of all the activities on the ranch. Cattle need to be moved to different pastures, you will check fences and reservoirs, look for strays or practice "roping" and "cutting". Here they also work cattle on neighbours properties. There is no head to tail riding.  You may learn how to rope and shoot, practice team penning and ranch sorting or just go out on a trail ride enjoying the scenic views and abundant wildlife. To operate the ranch on a sustainable fashion, they mimic the grazing behaviour of large migrating buffalo herds which historically roamed the prairies. This entails frequent cattle moves and long hours in the saddle.

Some of the ranch work is on the ground, i.e.branding calves or loading and shipping cattle. The ranch provides timbered canyons, high plateaus and endless sage brush prairie so you will ride through diverse scenery.

They practice Natural Horsemanship and love to involve the guests in the training.  They run about 40 horses and will match each guest with two horses as working partners for the week. Whilst more novice riders should be physically fit and not too timid, they must be willing to learn and some riding lessons prior to visiting the ranch is recommended.  Experienced riders will enjoy the challenges of riding on the ranch, be it climbing up a  steep canyon wall on their sure footed horses, crossing creek bottoms or going after a stray at a full canter. Not to mention trying their luck at cutting in the arena, roping livestock and going on a night ride.

When not in the saddle, you can hike and watch the abundant wildlife. Or go swimming, boating or fishing.  Non-riders who like to be away from it all will also be able to enjoy the  wonderful countryside and activities.

When time and the season allow you can visit rodeos, country dances and horse auctions with your hosts. If you want to combine a ranch vacation with travelling though the Wild West, you should plan a trip to Yellowstone National Park in Western Wyoming, the Badlands in South Dakota or the battlefield on the Little Big Horn where in the 19th century General Custer and Chief Sitting Bull fought one last big battle.



Minimum group size: 2
Maximum group size: 8
Ability description: Riders need to be able to ride in all three gaits and stay in the saddle for at least 3 hours
Type of ride: Trail
Total riding time: Flexible riding
Departure dates: Saturdays mid May to mid October.
25% last minute discount between 21-28 September and 28 September-5 October 2019

2020 dates: 23 May - 17 October
 
Pricing: Prices are per person and please note there is a minimum stay of seven days. The price includes state taxes and 10% gratuities.

Daily Rate: £198
Weekly rate: £1387
Non riders: £616 per person per week
Seven day minimum stay
If you require transfers a cost of £116 return paid locally.

10% discount for a 2 week stay
15% discount for a 3 week stay
10% discount for groups of 3 or more
15% late season discount in October starting 26 September
10% early booking discount for 2020 holidays booked before December 2019
Discounts cannot be combined and are offered on the base rate (not gratuities and taxes or transfer)

Special offer 21 & 28 September - fantastic 25% discount and free transfer!!!
NO SINGLE SUPPLEMENT



Note: All programmes and itineraries are weather dependent; in the face of adverse, or unexpected, weather conditions reasonable attempts will be made to provide equivalent riding.

All programmes are accurate at the time of writing. However, the team may adapt or modify details, whilst aiming to provide a similar experience.