Having just 10 or less guests at a time allows us to offer everyone a very individual experience. Guests can become part of the operation and participate in the various ranch activities as much or as little as they like. And to be honest: We enjoy getting to know our guests beyond their names – many of them coming back year after year
Due to our goal to operate our ranch sustainably, we mimic the grazing behavior of large migrating buffalo herds which historically roamed the prairies. This entails frequent cattle moves and thus a lot of hours in the saddle.
We work cattle on our ranch as well as on neighbors’ properties. There is no head-to-tail riding. When we don’t move livestock or check reservoirs and fences, we may be learning how to rope, practice team penning or just go on a trail ride enjoying the scenic views and the abundant wildlife. Guests coming for the first time are always awed by the wide open spaces of the Western wilderness. It’s like getting to live in a different world – and maybe even a different time.
We run about 40 horses and will match each guest with two horses as working partners for the week. We practice Natural Horsemanship and love to involve our guests in the training, last but not least for their and the horses’ safety. Since the work and the terrain can be quite demanding at times, the minimum age for riders is 16. Beginners should be physically fit, not too timid and willing to learn. Riding lessons prior to visiting the ranch are highly recommended.
Experienced riders will enjoy the varied challenges of riding on New Haven, be it climbing up a steep canyon wall on their sure footed horse, 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.
The New Haven Ranch is part of an old ghost town. 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. Today the old buildings and machinery found all over the ranch bear witness of times that we only know from novels and movies.