RanchSeeker Blog

Pet Friendly Dude Ranch Vacations

3/5/2014 9:49:20 PM

When a pet is truly part of our family, having a vacation experience without them may just not feel right. Or, it may be that due to the personality of our pet, including their physical or emotional wellbeing, perhaps they can not be entrusted to the care of a reputable boarding  facility. In such cases, many people opt to keep their pets with them. If a vacation is a vacation only if our pet is along for the ride, the good news is that many dude ranches are pet friendly. With each pet friendly dude ranch, the policies as to permissions regarding pets will vary. Some dude ranches have a weight restriction and usually there are specific areas pets may not be allowed to enter. As well, there are likely other ‘house rules’ in place to preserve the comfort and safety of all guests. Often, additional charges may be incurred on a per night basis for pets to be accommodated at the dude ranch. Rather than having a negative, or potentially costly experience due to an unclear understanding of pet policies, when considering bringing a pet to a dude ranch it is best to speak to them in advance if you have any concerns specific to your pet.

Some Pet Friendly Dude Ranches

One dude ranch that is pet friendly is the Echo Valley Ranch, located in Canada. The interior British Columbian mountains offer majestic views, and the natural serenity of the unspoiled forests, valleys, ponds and grasslands around the ranch are the perfect compliment to this world class ranch and spa. Whether guests are seeking an oasis of relaxation, or an exhilarating experience - Echo Valley offers it all.

Echo Valley Ranch
Echo Valley Ranch

At The Sugar & Spice Ranch camp, a very unique and undoubtedly memorable experience is available for mothers and daughters to share a week together at a ranch. Specially catering to “bonding families through horses”, their week long camps are designed be a treasured time spent learning the ropes of tacking up, grooming and riding together - in addition to all the other activities available to enjoy.

The Sugar & Spice Ranch
The Sugar & Spice Ranch

 The Resort at Paws Up is not just a ranch, it is an incredible experience! Located in Montana, they offer accommodations of two styles, vacation homes or luxury tents. Dogs are allowed only in the vacation home style units. The perfect blend of wilderness adventure with unparalleled food, wine, spa treatments and decadent extras -Paws Up is true bliss.

Paws Up Dude Ranch
Paws Up Dude Ranch

Planning a Pet-Friendly Dude Ranch Vacation

Traveling with a pet does bring with it some challenges, however, with a little research and advance planning most of those challenges can be overcome. A vacation can then be enjoyed by everyone, including your pet, by planning a dude ranch vacation that allows your pet to be part of the experience. The best way to ensure you have a great vacation is to be clear on the specifics of the pet policies at the dude ranch you have in mind before booking. With activities and accommodations that cater to each member of the family, including your pet, a dude ranch vacation can be the perfect fit! 

Use Ranchseeker’s dude ranch vacation finder tool to find a pet-friendly dude ranch suitable for your vacation plans.

Sherry’s Amazing BBQ Brisket From Elk Mountain Ranch

2/24/2014 4:11:43 PM

Nothing compares to some good BBQ brisket. This BBQ brisket is cooked in the oven but you wouldn't know it! It is packed with flavor and oh so tender.  Get this all-star, easy-to-follow recipe from the folks over at Elk Mountain Guest  Ranch.

Sherry's BBQ Beef Brisket
Sherry's BBQ Beef Brisket

5-6 pound brisket
1 large onion, peeled & sliced
4 gloves garlic, minced
½ cup brown sugar
¼ cup red wine vinegar
¼ cup soy sauce
¼ cup water
1 (8 oz.) bottle chili sauce
2 bay leaves
1/3 cup Dijon mustard
3 Tbsp. molasses

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 325.
  2. Sear meat on both sides.
  3. Stir marinade ingredients together and pour over meat.
  4. Cover with foil and seal tightly.  Cook until tender.
  5. Remove meat, slice and return to juices.  Discard bay leaves.
  6. Refrigerate overnight.  Reheat for 1-1 ½ hours before serving.

Big Bar Guest Ranch A Cariboo Adventure

1/20/2014 11:59:45 AM

Big Bar Guest Ranch is nestled in the rolling hills of the Cariboo and offers year round fun and spectacular scenery. With lots of activities there is truly something for everyone to do. From hiking archery, canoeing, and fishing in the summer to cross-country skiing, ice skating, ice fishing and more in the winter.

Big Bar Guest Ranch
Spectacular views at Big Bar Guest Ranch

Horseback riding at the Big Bar Guest Ranch is at the heart of your guest ranch experience. Follow natural trails through forested areas or enjoy the wide-open grasslands and mountain meadows of Cariboo cattle country. Feel the freedom that can only be experienced on horseback. Whether you are a first time rider or have lots of experience in the saddle The Big Bar Guest Ranch has the perfect horse for you.

Big Bar Guest Ranch
Wide open spaces at Big Bar Guest Ranch

With plenty of types of accommodations to choose from like guestrooms or cabins you are sure to enjoy your stay while away on your Cariboo guest ranch vacation. The rooms and cabins are comfortable and have a rustic feel without sacrificing the creature comforts of home and they are well suited for a family get-a-way or an adventure retreat.

Big Bar Guest Ranch
Cabin at Big Bar Guest Ranch

Meals at The Big Bar Ranch are healthy and plentiful and guests dine at large communal tables. It’s a great way to get to know other guests and provides an opportunity to make new friends.

Big Bar Guest Ranch
Dining room at Big Bar Guest Ranch

So for your next vacation trade your deadlines and stress for fresh mountain air, a good horse, and a trail that leads from one spectacular view to another.

Happy Trails! RanchSeeker

Corporate Retreats At A Dude Ranch

1/15/2014 1:56:07 PM

A lot of planning is required for a successful corporate retreat, and this includes choosing the right location. There are many places to have such an event – a beach resort, a new swanky hotel or a nearby outdoor activity center.  But what if you could take your employees to a venue where they can unplug from everything and actually communicate with one another while getting in touch with nature at the same time? You could – by taking them to a dude ranch corporate retreat.

Vacationers Love Dude Ranches

Guest ranches or dude ranches are steadily becoming popular among vacation goers because they cater to a variety of interests and needs. The vast grounds, often surrounded by breathtaking views of wide open fields, tall mountains or bodies of water offer the perfect venue for quiet introspection or an ideal spot to just sit down and read a book. Guests looking for a fun time will find no shortage of activities – such as trail hiking, horseback riding, fly fishing or swimming.  Interaction is also very easy through a myriad of outdoor activities, campfires and dinners at the main hall.

Some Dude Ranches To Consider

There are many vacation ranches all across the country, but not all of them specialize in dude ranch corporate retreats. If you are looking for venues that cater to such, you might want to consider the following: Echo Valley Ranch – located at the heart of British Columbia, Echo Valley Ranch caters to individuals and groups. The ranch has 20 rooms and cabins that can accommodate up to 5 people (on shared occupancy) and has a state of the art corporate events space that can seat up to 150. They offer worry-free corporate packages that include accommodations, meals and drinks and entertainment for a minimum stay of two nights.

Echo Valley Ranch Corporate Facilities
Echo Valley Ranch Corporate Facilities

Bar W Ranch – set in the small mountain town of Whitefish, Montana, the Bar W is an excellent corporate destination whether it be in the summer or winter. The ranch caters to small or large groups ranging from 5 to 300 participants. They offer complete packages and itinerary planning but are also very flexible, so you can create the itinerary or agenda yourself.

The Hideout Guest Ranch and Lodge – This small “little piece of heaven” in Shell, Wyoming provides the perfect venue for a private dude ranch corporate retreat. They can handle groups up to a maximum of thirty guests, and offer equestrian and non-equestrian related activities for everyone to enjoy.

Lone Mountain Ranch – Set in the heart of Montana ski country is the Lone Mountain Ranch. This historic guest ranch has facilities that can accommodate up to forty guests. The ranch features two large meeting rooms, a recreation room and six large bedrooms, ideal for small groups. They feature an individualized program that utilizes the beautiful southern Montana setting to inspire creativity and provide motivation for participants

The Resort At Paws Up – Also set in Montana, the Resort at Paws Up is a 37,000 acre working ranch that is unrivaled when it comes to luxury accommodations. The resort offers first class service and amenities, with fifty two accommodation setups ranging from private vacation homes to luxury tents. They also a variety of activity spaces from 10 to 200 people.


Corporate Events at The Resort at Paws Up

Vista Verde Ranch – Vista Verde is a secluded ranch in Colorado that promotes focused social interaction, while offering diverse adventures for your guests. They are also known for their luxury log cabin accommodations, and offer great solutions with their inclusive packages and pricing.

Why Go To A Dude Ranch For A Company Retreat

Dude ranches provide a breath of fresh air from most corporate set-ups. You get people close to nature, take them off the grid and place them in a relaxed atmosphere where they can connect with one another. Guest ranches vary in size, so you can pick one that best matches the size of your group. Although charmingly rustic, modern ranches now offer excellent facilities like meeting rooms with HD screens and high speed internet access where you can conduct your work related sessions and exercises. When all these activities are over, acres of ranch space welcomes everyone, allowing them to go around and have fun at their own leisure. Whether it’s fun, light hearted gossip at the ranches’ main room, songs and some beer in front of a warm fire or a quick horse ride, there is something for everyone to do.

Honey Mustard Pork Tenderloin Recipe

10/21/2013 1:46:04 PM

This delicious pork tenderloin recipe is brought to you by the folks over at White Stallion Ranch in Arizona. This family run ranch has been in business since 1965 and is known for their exceptional hospitality. It’s located next to Saguaro National Parks just at the foot of the Tucson Mountains. At this dude ranch you will really experience the rugged Wild West but with the comforts of a top resort. White Stallion is a working cattle ranch and it's great fun to watch the Longhorn cattle come in to water.

Here is a recipe from their beloved collection.

Honey Mustard Pork Tenderloin

¼ c.        Vegetable oil
2 Tbsp.     Brown sugar
2 Tbsp.     Honey
2 Tbsp.    Lemon juice
1 Tbsp.     Dijon-style mustard
2 tsp.        Beef or chicken instant bouillon
1 (3/4 to 1-pound)  Pork tenderloin

  1. In a large pan or plastic bag, combine all ingredients, except tenderloin.
  2. Add tenderloin. Cover; marinate in refrigerator 6 hours or overnight.
  3. Remove tenderloin from marinade.
  4. Grill or broil 30 to 35 minutes at 350ºF or until loin reaches 160º in center. Baste frequently with heated marinade.
  5. Remove from over and let rest for 5 minutes. Slice and serve.


    Honey Mustard Pork Tenderloin
    Honey Mustard Pork Tenderloin

    Makes 2 to 4 servings

Drowsy Water Ranch Chocolate Chip Cookies

8/20/2013 3:55:23 PM

When guests from the Drowsy Water Ranch leave to head home from their dude ranch vacation, sure they talk about the fun they have had horseback riding. They also may talk about the great food and the how much the kids enjoyed themselves. But, they will surely talk about the Drowsy Water Ranch Chocolate Chip Cookies. These chocolate chip cookies are large, round, gooey and full of chocolate! We are very lucky that the nice people at Drowsy Water Ranch have generously shared their recipe.

1 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
2 cups flour
2 cups old-fashioned oats
6 oz chocolate chips chopped pecans or walnuts to taste

Preheat over to 350 degrees F In medium bowl, combine the baking soda, baking powder, salt, flour and oats. Mix gently to combine

Making Chocolate Chip Cookies

In a large bowl combine the butter and sugar and beat until combined. Next add eggs one by one. Lastly add the vanilla

Mixing Chocolate Chip Cookies


Now it is time to add the dry ingredients to butter mixture. Use a wooden spoon or mixer on low to mix well.  Next add the chocolate chips and nuts stirring well. The dough will be stiff. This will be an arm workout.

To shape the cookies, drop about ¼ cupfuls onto greased baking sheet with 3-4 inches between each cookie. Using an ice cream scoop is a good way to get uniform sizes.


Dropping Chocolate Chip Cookies

Bake 10-15 minutes at 350 degrees until edges are golden brown but middle is still spongy. Cool for a few minutes before removing from cookie sheet and enjoy.

Drowsy Water Ranch Chocolate Chip Cookies

Brandied French Toast Recipe

6/4/2013 2:58:33 PM

Make this tasty french toast recipe your next weekend breakfast or brunch, provided generously by Elk Mountain Guest Ranch located in Colorado where you will surely dine well. High and remote with off-the-beaten path charm, Elk Mountain Guest Ranch is a convenient 2.5 hour drive from Denver Airport.  Horseback through unspoiled wilderness or go on a thrilling white water raft trip. Maybe take a vehicle trip to Aspen or camp overnight high in the Rockies. All these activities are available at Elk Mountain Guest Ranch.

Yield:  1 loaf French bread

5 eggs
1 cup cream
1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
1 Tbsp. almond extract
1 Tbsp. Brandy
¼ cup sugar
1 loaf French bread, sliced about
¾ inches thick

  1. Whisk together the first 6 ingredients together until well mixed.
  2. Dip a bread slice and then and grill on both sides until golden brown.
  3. Serve french toast with syrup and also delicious with sauteed bananas
Branded French Toast
Branded French Toast

Dude Ranch Vacations For Foodies

5/27/2013 12:57:10 PM

Ranch vacations are perfect venues for those who want to experience the wild outdoors. Because many ranch vacations offer no frills accommodation, you may also think that the food they serve is no nonsense, but that is far from the truth! Although exquisite cuisines are not really the primary goal when one visits a dude ranch, foodies may love the idea that many ranches are now offering gourmet meals. Just like in hotels and other tourist destinations, creative chefs are now serving scrumptious dishes in enchanting and natural environments. If you are a foodie, then you will definitely find your home away from home in these following ranches:

Lone Mountain Ranch

Lone Mountain Ranch in Montana offers meals which are epicurean exercises all by themselves. Their chefs make use of local cuisines, making a menu that’s worthy to fullfill cravings induced by a full day’s worth of outdoor activities.

Lone Mountain Ranch
Enjoy the dining as well as scenery at Lone Mountain Ranch

Breakfasts are served in a buffet and feature platter of fresh fruit, oatmeal and other grains, scrambled eggs, and pancakes. Lunch features a healthy salad and soup along with hot meat or poultry. At the end of the day, guests gather together over a three-course meal which consists of the ranch’s very own recipes: Iron Roasted Statler Chicken Breast, Crispy Panko Fried Jumbo Tiger Shrimp, and Grilled All Natural Angus New York Striploins.

This makes up a hearty meal to cap off the day.

Red Reflet Ranch

Looking for fresh food?

Well, the meals in the Red Reflet Ranch are all made from ingredients which come straight from the ranch. Their first rate resident chef personally prepares all of them making certain that the foods are nutritious and extraordinary.

Red Reflet Ranch
A chocolate fountain at Red Reflet Ranch

Spending some me-time in the ranch and worried about eating lunch alone?

The Red Reflet Ranch lunch and dinner meals usually include the staff and the owners, who all live on site. This allows you to connect with people and make new friends. If you’re in for some unwinding after a long day out, choose from 20 beer brews or 100 wines sourced from all over the world.

Marble Mountain Ranch

Fresh, original and healthy – these words describe the meals served in California’s Marble Mountain Ranch. Many ingredients are sourced from the ranch’s very own garden to ensure freshness. The meals are designed as an accompaniment to the outdoor activities, thereby heightening one’s overall experience in the ranch. All meals are designed and prepared by the ranch owner Heidi Cole who is also the executive chef, who has been in the food industry for thirty-five years. The menu is based on American traditions but have a wholesome twist to it.

With great food, a stay is Marble Mountain Ranch is not just a ranch vacation but a culinary travel within itself.

Vista Verde Ranch

Vista Verde Ranch takes pride at being "not just any luxury ranch," they also characterize luxury with what delicacies they serve and how they serve them. To accomplish this, their chef and kitchen staff makes use of the freshest ingredients and prepare them, artistically to give a sparkle of gourmet to even just a recreational picnic. Dinners are the main event in Vista Verde Ranch, and with a very upscale menu, you would definitely think that you are in a five star restaurant. That said, their meals appeal not only to the taste but to the other senses as well.

Vista Verde Ranch
5 Star Meals at Vista Verde Ranch

If you are a foodie, big cities and large resorts are not the only destinations where you can find fine dining. Dude ranch vacations now offer five star cuisine and dining experiences.

Plan your dude ranch vacation with Ranchseeker's easy to use dude ranch search tool

Agnes' Chicken Wing Dip Recipe From Elk Mountain Ranch

5/1/2013 5:32:41 PM

The kind folks over in Colorado at Elk Mountain Guest Ranch have provided us with one of their treasured recipes to share on Ranchseeker. Elk Mountain Ranch is unique for its spectacular location, horseback rides of unmatched beauty, variety of activities and superb menu. Elk Mountain Ranch offers a complete one-week package that includes the best activities Colorado has to offer at a very reasonable all-inclusive rate. In the meantime, why don't you try Agnes' Chicken Wing Dip

Ingredients:

5 boneless skinless chicken breast halves
1 (17-oz.) bottle of your favorite chicken wing sauce
1 (8-oz.) pkg. cream cheese – room temp.
1 cup Ranch dressing
3 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Directions

  1. Boil or cook chicken and then shred.
  2. Combine other ingredients
  3. Mix in the chicken.
  4. Put in a baking dish and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.
  5. To serve, put in a crock pot to keep warm.  Serve with celery sticks, Fritos or tortilla chips.

Dude Ranch Vacations, Why Not?

4/10/2013 11:12:32 AM

It is already April, and before you know it, spring will come bringing about sunshine and blossoms. Then, you know what comes next – summer, which everyone definitely looks out for. That said, you might already be planning your summer vacation. Why not go off the beaten path this year and head out to dude ranches. Many dude ranches are having summer specials such as:

Elk Mountain Ranch in Colorado  has a special rate offer for June 2nd and June 16th. Save $200 off the adult rate and $100 off the children's rate for the weeks of June 2nd and 16th. This offer is valid from February 27, 2013 through May 31, 2013

Elk Mountain Ranch

Planning a girls trip?

Many might go to the beach or to a city, but this year, you might want to try something else. A quick weekend away at on a dude ranch might just be a perfect thing for you to try. 

White Stallion Ranch is offering the Ultimate Wild West Cactus Cowgirls package which includes the following for the all inclusive price for a single is $1,475 and per person in a double, $1,375:

White Stallion Ranch
White Stallion Ranch

  • Lots of riding with a daily lesson
  • Margarita welcome party
  • Country, Western dance lessons
  • Team penning
  • Tequila tasting
  • Target shooting with a gun safety class.

The all inclusive price for a single is $1,475 and per person in a double, $1,375.

This offer is valid from April 17, 2013 through April 21, 2013 Dude ranches are perfect vacation destinations for the whole year round, but it is worth visiting during the spring and summer months, when you can fully enjoy the outdoor activities. If riding is not your thing, you can go swimming, walking or hiking while taking in the fresh and clean air.  If you choose to bring the kids, many dude ranches have kids programs to keep them busy.  This allows you to enjoy yourself while they are having fun, too!  

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