Dude Ranch Vacations
Reservations
Reservations

Ranch Vacations in the USA

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to live the life of a cowboy? Well, you can enjoy a weeklong cowboy vacation on one of the many "Dude Ranches" located across the USA. Guest ranch vacations are great fun for everyone in the family.

Most Dude ranches are owned and operated by real cowboys and cowgirls. They offer rooms or cabins for "city slickers" or "dudes". The cost is about $150 to $250 a day per person or $1000 to $2000 per week. These prices normally include a comfortable room or "bunkhouse" cabin, plus home-cooked meals and a variety of entertaining activities such as trail riding, cowboy picnics and rodeos. At most ranches the price includes your daily use of a horse, but some ranches charge extra for the horse, and give you the option of bringing your own.
Dude Ranch© C. Reno
Daily activities usually include riding lessons, trail rides, picnics, sightseeing trips and rodeos or roping and riding demonstrations.

Two types of ranch vacations in the USA

The resort ranches specialize in offering entertaining vacations for tourists. They can be very comfortable with luxurious rooms and numerous activities designed to keep their guests entertained. Daily activities usually include riding lessons, trail rides, picnics, sightseeing trips and rodeos or roping and riding demonstrations. They often host nightly entertainment or dancing.

Working ranches usually offer more rustic accommodations and less organized activities. As the name implies, they are real working ranches that are in the business of raising cattle or horses. They usually offer accommodations for a limited number of guests. Daily activities include a lot of riding and sightseeing, but also add an opportunity to see real cowboys at work and a chance to assist in the daily ranch work.

You can make reservations from here

Here are a few really great Dude Ranches in various parts of the USA. We have tried to give you a brief description of what each ranch offers and the prices they charge. You can click on the links to get more information or to make your reservations. Accommodations are very limited at some of these ranches, so try to make your reservations far in advance.
Kay El Bar Guest Ranch, Wickenburg, Arizona

Located in the Sonoran Desert country of central Arizona about one hour northwest of Phoenix and just four hours from the Grand Canyon and the spectacular Sedona Red Rock Country. Luxurious accommodations are available in a historic adobe ranch lodge or in several small cabins. Activities include daily rides in the surrounding Sonora Desert, cowboy cookouts, hiking in the nearby mountains and swimming in the heated pool. Prices begin at $200 per day or $1300 per week. Children are welcome. Season is from November through April and minimum stay is two days.

Bar Lazy J Guest Ranch, Parshall, Colorado

Nestled in a peaceful valley along the banks of the Colorado River and near the Arapaho National Forest. In operation since 1912, this "old-west" ranch can accomodate 42 guests in cozy, comfortable log cabins sleeping from two to eight. Each cabin has a screened porch with a view of the Colorado River. Activites include GOLD MEDAL trout fishing on the Colorado River, horseback riding in the Arapaho National Forest, whitewater rafting, mountain biking, 4x4 Jeep rides in the high country, heated swimming pool and jacuzzi, and comprehensive children's program. Weekly rates are adult (13 and over) $1,650, children (7-12) $1095, and children (3-6) $895. Discount weeks during late May/early June and September. September is adults only. Season is May to September.

Wilderness Trails Ranch, Durango, Colorado

Located about 4 1/2 hours from Albuquerque, NM and 7 hours from Denver, CO in the beautiful San Juan Mountains of southwest Colorado. Wilderness Trails borders the magnificent Piedra Wilderness Area containing secluded meadows, high mountain vistas and vast mountain forests covering thousands of acres. Guests of the ranch stay in well-appointed rustic cabins ideal for families of 4-5, or cabin suites with three bedrooms and baths. Activities include horseback riding, hiking, fishing, water skiing, river rafting, Mesa Verde tour, heated 72-foot swimming pool, and hot tub. Weekly adult rates range from $1550 to $2700, youth rates (age 3-5) $1150 and (age 6-10) $1625. Discount weeks in May and June. Season is late May to early October.

Lake Mancos Guest Ranch, Durango, Colorado

Located in the beautiful southwest Colorado Mountains near Mesa Verde National Park and about 4 hours north of Albuquerque, this gracious ranch offers flexible lodging choices. From their location at 8,000 feet looking out on the La Plata Range of the San Juan Mountains, you can ride the most beautiful horse trails in Southwest Colorado with over two million acres of National Forest to explore. Rates for the Regular Season (June 24-August 18) are $1350 for adults, $1095 for children 6-17, and $945 for children 4-5 years old. In the Low Season (June 3-June 23 and August 19-September 29 are $1225 for adults, $990 for children 6-17, and $850 for children 4-5 years old.

Lone Mountain Ranch, Big Sky, Montana

Lone Mountain Ranch is located in the mountains of Southwest Montana and close to Yellowstone National Park. They offer a combination of quality amenities, a wonderful staff, a comfortable informal environment and a wide variety of activities focusing on the discovery of nature. Guests can enjoy horsebackriding, flyfishing, canoeing and hiking in the summer months. Winter offers activities such as skiing, snowshoing, and sliegh rides. Weekly rates for adults start at $2,595 in the summer months and $2,040 in the winter.

Bar H Dude Ranch, Clarendon, Texas

Located on 5,500 acres in the heart of the Texas Panhandle about an hour southeast of Amarillo, Texas. Live the cowboy life on this working cattle ranch. Depending on the season, you'll have the opportunity to watch the cowboys, feed the livestock, mend fences, move the herd and engage in dozens of other ranch chores. You can climb in the saddle and join in the work, or just watch. Family-type rooms in the bunkhouse have private bath, air conditioning and heat. Rates include lodging, three excellent meals each day, and two horseback rides daily. Other activities include volleyball, fishing, pitching horseshoes, wagon tours, and some of the best deer and game bird hunting in the region. There are great birding opportunities for all seasons and over 60 species of birds have been seen here in one day. Swimming pool is open during season. Weekly rates start at $540/adult. Children welcome. Open year-round. Special group rates for companies, churches, and reunions.

Running-R Ranch, Bandera, Texas

Adjoining 5,500 acres of the Hill Country State Natural Area in the "Cowboy Capital of the World" and only 45 miles northwest of San Antonio, Texas. This guest ranch focuses on horseback riding and offers a variety of rides - for every skill level -- every day. You can also relax in the Round-Up room where you can meet other guests, play pool, watch TV or just sit on the beautiful porch and enjoy your stay under western skies. You can also go hiking, play ping-pong, pitch horseshoes or swim in the pool. Fishing and tubing is available at one of the nearby rivers and lakes. Accommodations include cozy cabins, which sleep up to four people and the bunkhouse which sleeps six. All have air-conditioning/heating, private bath, refrigerator and a beautiful porch to enjoy the Texas Hill Country Scenery. Daily rate starting at $130/night in High Season includes two meals/day (breakfast and lunch), two hours horseback riding, swimming, and all other ranch activities. Additional horseback riding is $20/per hour. Riding for children age 6 and older. Weekly and group rates available upon request. Children of all ages welcome. Open year-round.

Double E Guest Ranch, Gila, New Mexico

Adjoining 5,500 acres of the Hill Country State Natural Area in the "Cowboy Capital of the World" and only 45 miles northwest of San Antonio, Texas. This guest ranch focuses on horseback riding and offers a variety of rides - for every skill level -- every day. You can also relax in the Round-Up room where you can meet other guests, play pool, watch TV or just sit on the beautiful porch and enjoy your stay under western skies. You can also go hiking, play ping-pong, pitch horseshoes or swim in the pool. Fishing and tubing is available at one of the nearby rivers and lakes. Accommodations include cozy cabins, which sleep up to four people and the bunkhouse which sleeps six. All have air-conditioning/heating, private bath, refrigerator and a beautiful porch to enjoy the Texas Hill Country Scenery. Daily rate starting at $130/night in High Season includes two meals/day (breakfast and lunch), two hours horseback riding, swimming, and all other ranch activities. Additional horseback riding is $20/per hour. Riding for children age 6 and older. Weekly and group rates available upon request. Children of all ages welcome. Open year-round.

Bar M Ranch at Bingham Hot Springs, Adams, Oregon

Built in 1864, as a stage coach stop during the Civil War, the Bar M Ranch has been providing one of the most rewarding guest ranch experiences in the west. The tradition continues today, making it the ultimate destination for a fun, relaxing and memorable western vacation. Everybody is welcome here at the Bar M, from large families to individuals. The peace, quiet, and beauty of the ranch also makes it an ideal location for weddings, corporate retreats, meetings and other group events.

Heading up the Umatilla River, the Bar M Ranch is located just 30 miles east of Pendleton, Oregon in the foothills of the Blue Mountains. The 3,000 acre guest ranch is located along the river in the canyon amid tall pine, fir, and cottonwood trees. Experience the wonders of the West upon the back of one of our 45 beautiful horses. Enjoy the fresh mountain air, natural hot springs pool, spectacular scenery and sports and recreational opportunities. These amenities make the Bar M Ranch a perfect year round vacation spot.

Weekly rates start at $506 in the off season and $1075 in the summer season for adults and $354 in the off season and $753 in the summer season for children.


Written by: USATourist Staff
Top Photo Credit: © C. Reno
Photo Description: Wranglers on horseback drive a herd of cattle across the open hills.