RanchSeeker Blog

Adorable Mini Horses. Cuteness Overload

1/11/2016 5:39:37 PM

Miniature horses do exist! While miniature horses are usually the size of a very small pony but many retain horse characteristics and are considered "horses" by their respective registries. They come in a variety of colors and patterns. Miniature horses are friendly and interact well with people and are often kept as pets. They are also trained as service animals to assist people with disabilities similar to guide dogs. They are generally quite hardy, often living longer on average than  full-sized horses with the average life span of miniature horses ranging from 25 to 35 years. Makes you want to get one of your own doesn't it? Now get ready for some cuteness overload!

mini horse
A girls best friend

mini horse
Racing with the mini horse 

miniature horse
Teeny tiny mini horse

mini horse
Size means nothing to this mini horse 


Cat & mini horse
Best friends

mini horse
Easily fits into the front seat!     

RanchSeeker Welcomes YD Guest Ranch

1/4/2016 8:46:15 AM

Located in Ashcroft, British Columbia, Canada this authentic dude ranch has been operating as a guest ranch for 70 years. Here you will find a rich history, rustic elegance, delicious food and signature “Cowboy Service”. There is lots to do while staying at the ranch so you can be as active as you want to be or simply kick back and relax. Kids love the ranch as they discover new adventures and enjoy being in the beautiful outdoors. It’s also the ideal venue for secluded corporate retreats or the perfect ranch wedding.

Horseback-riding

If you have ever dreamed of being a cowboy or cowgirl then this is the vacation destination for you. Horseback rides with experienced wranglers will take you along sun drenched dusty trails or through grassy fields with snow-capped mountain peaks off in the distance. You will feel transported back to a simpler time like the days when the pioneers and homesteaders used these very same trails to herd cattle. At the beginning of your vacation you will be matched up with the best horse to suit your riding experience level and then you and your new equine friend will enjoy trails that lead through rolling meadows and shaded trails lush with sagebrush, western hemlock trees, and towering Douglas fir and ponderosa pines. With two hour guided trips, all day guided trips and even overnight pack trips to choose from your dream of being a cowboy or cowgirl is bound to be fulfilled.

BC Guest Ranch
YD Guest Ranch

Covered Wagon Trips

For those vacationers looking for a truly unique experience the ranch offers “Covered Wagon Trips”. Your first and last night will spent at the ranch and then once you have been matched up with a horse and feel confident in the saddle your wilderness horseback trip will begin. A master team driver will lead the covered wagon out early in the day. You can choose whether to ride in the wagon or on your horse with experienced guides to your first overnight destination. Camps are set up by YD crew members beside a little lake or a mountain stream and the wilderness kitchen provides delicious, hearty meals to enjoy around a blazing campfire. Guests have spacious private tents with cots, waterproof floors, and screen windows. Portable showers are available for your comfort, although the more adventurous wash away the days’ dirt in the creek – talk about invigorating! Be prepared to be “wowed” by this incredible adventure!

Covered Wagon Trips
Covered Wagon Trips

 Other Ranch Activities

When not in the saddle YD Guest Ranch offers ATV and ARGO Touring adventures against the beautiful backdrop of the Cascade Mountains. Experienced guides will teach you all you need to know to get the most out of this exhilarating activity. A driver license is not required and minimum age of participant is 16 years old to drive own ATV. Helmets are provided. Other fun outdoor activities include archery hiking, and fly fishing. Guests also enjoy soaking in the hot tub after an action-packed day.

ATV and ARGO touring
ATV and ARGO Touring

Accommodations

You will experience down-home hospitality in an informal atmosphere that blends the creature comforts of home with a Western flair. Tastefully decorated, authentic Native Tipis, Cliffside miner tents (with Decks) and one beautiful Tree House are nestled privately between the aspen and fir trees. To preserve the quiet sanctuary and sounds of nature, the tents and Tipis do not feature wireless internet, televisions or phones. Take time to disconnect from your devices and reconnect with nature and your loved ones. For those that can’t completely disconnect there is free WiFi access, a guest phone, laptop and printer available in the main ranch lodge.

Miner tents
Miner tents

Dining

Most meals and social gatherings take place in the main ranch lodge. Here you will always find hot coffee and a friendly face. Meals consist of wholesome, hearty “western gourmet” fare with a variety of fruit, local produce, Montana beef and other fresh meats as well as tempting home-made breads and other goodies. Aside from dining in the lodge expect traditional cowboy cook-outs and BBQ’s. Special diets for food allergies or dietary restrictions can be accommodated within reason with advance notice. If you like a nip or two now and then be sure to bring your own since the ranch does not have a liquor license.

Home-cooked meals
Home-cooked meals

In a Nutshell

A YD Guest Ranch vacation offers the opportunity to try out new adventures, meet interesting new people, and enjoy delicious western gourmet food while staying in secluded peaceful accommodations.

Horse Care Resolutions For The New Owner

12/28/2015 4:59:57 PM

Have you recently become the proud owner of a horse or involved in helping to look after one? Maybe you're even thinking about having your own horse one day? If you fit any of these categories, then the following resolutions on how to properly care for and bond with your horse might be useful.

Brush and groom your horse regularly and often.  A well-groomed horse is a happy horse and the amount of care and attention a horse receives is fundamental in creating a unique bond between horse and owner. This special closeness is essential in having a good working rapport during riding sessions and will translate into quicker responsiveness by the horse to your commands in any given situation.

Horse Grooming

Spend lots of time giving your horse positive re-enforcement. The more your horse feels connected and lovingly controlled, the more willing it will be to follow your instructions and be better behaved.

Clean horse stalls at least twice a day and paddocks once a week. No-one likes to live in a dirty environment and this includes horses.  Your horse will appreciate and be more comfortable living in well-maintained quarters.

Clean Horse Stalls

Improve your cardio and you'll have better control and stamina while on the horse.  Also, this ensures you are fully energized to make split second decisions while riding. Improving physical fitness in general will improve your riding performance.

Improve your balance.  A good exercise is to sit on a balance ball while lifting one leg off the floor at a time. This will improve your overall balance and will facilitate your body control and awareness in the saddle, which will allow for clearer, more precise communication with your horse.


Seated Leg Lifts

Ride without stirrups at least once a week. This helps your overall strength and position, making you a more effective and secure rider.  It's a good resolution to work without stirrups at least once a week and if youre feeling really ambitious, increase that to two or three times weekly.

Ride other horses if possible. When riding unfamiliar horses, you have to adjust your style to accommodate their quirks and responsiveness. Riding different horses occasionally makes you more aware of your own strengths and weaknesses as a rider, and think about training, riding, and how to convey your desires accurately.  This will help you to ride your own horse better.

Buy some good riding clothes. A well-made jacket and jodhpurs will do wonders for your confidence and self-image as a new horse-owner.

Take lessons with a fully-qualified instructor.  Regardless of any previous riding experience, you can always benefit from having lessons and an instructor can help you and your horse get acquainted properly right from the get-go and not develop bad habits as you embark on an exciting new endeavour as a fully-fledged horse owner!

Have Your Dream Wedding and Honeymoon at a Dude Ranch

12/22/2015 4:06:38 PM

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding!  It takes a lot of work to make this the most perfect day of your life. The biggest concern is the wedding venue and honeymoon destination. You want to be able to celebrate, relax and spend time as newlyweds without a worry in the world. A dude ranch is the perfect combination for a dream wedding and honeymoon..... a truly unique outdoor wedding for you and your guests away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Dude ranch weddings

Why Is A Dude Ranch The Perfect Choice? Staying in a private log cabin in an idyllic setting is the perfect adventure as a newly married couple. Your entire family and friends can join you for a beautiful and romantic wedding. Ranches can normally accommodate everyone on the guest list, depending on group size, which will relieve you of the responsibility of booking hotel rooms.  Dude ranches also offer a wide range of activities that your guests (and kids) can enjoy, which also saves you the job of providing entertainment.

dude ranch honeymoon

At a dude ranch, you will be up close with nature, surrounded by panoramic views and wildlife sightings, making it the perfect backdrop for an outdoor wedding. Also, your schedule can be customized for you and your guests to participate in many of the various activities on offer, be it trail riding, shooting range, hiking, swimming, fishing or rafting. For relaxation, many dude ranches now offer fully-equipped spas, for that all-important massage to soothe away the stresses of wedding planning and beauty treatments to help you look your very best on this most special day!  In-house spas are usually much appreciated by your guests as well.

Perfect Dude Ranch Destinations for Your Wedding and Honeymoon While there are many dude ranches that can make your big day a memorable experience, here are three that are situated in amazing locations and which offer a variety of activities:

Geronimo Trails Guest Ranch

This dude ranch is located in the Southern USA among the beautiful mountains of the Gila National Forest in New Mexico. It is a small ranch, which is why booking the entire place for your wedding and honeymoon will give you and your guests the freedom of feeling entirely at home. You can hike or horse-ride through the luscious forest among the wildlife all the way up to the hill for a breathtaking view of deep canyons and streams of crystal-clear water. They also provide tours for several historic sites and swimming in the creek! Geronimo Trails Guest Ranch offers 5% off to honeymooners.

 Geronimo Trails Guest Ranch

Chilcotin Holidays

This dude ranch is located in the Canadian north among the snow-capped mountains of British Columbia. Here you can go trail riding, target shooting and also take lasso lessons. This ranch will give you a true cowboy experience. They have a vast selection of packages which include animal tracking, hiking and mountain biking, fishing, and other adventurous activities. The ranch has a secluded honeymoon cabin available that promises the utmost privacy during your stay. You can upgrade from any package to the honeymoon cabin as well.

Chilcotin Holidays

Echo Valley Ranch

Echo Valley Ranch is also located in British Columbia, about a 5 hour drive from Vancouver. This luxury dude ranch has an East-West theme and boasts 2 world class spas. One spa focuses on European spa treatments while the other on Thai spa treatments. If you are looking to get pampered during your wedding, then Echo Valley Ranch is the dude ranch for you.

spa treatment

Weddings at Echo Valley Ranch & Spa are a perfect opportunity to bring together the family and celebrate in a spectacular and serene setting. Wedding parties have the exclusive use of the whole ranch, so your family and friends can settle in, spread out and be comfortable. The ranch can accommodate up to 50 persons for overnight stays and has an awesome, discreetly located, honeymoon cabin for the bride and and groom. From hair to makeup, from the wedding cake to the reception, the Echo Valley team help you plan the perfect wedding, so you and your guests can simply relax and enjoy this all-important day. So, if you are looking for an active and fun-filled honeymoon amid unforgettable scenery for a wedding to really "wow" your guests and become a cherished memory, then a dude ranch is the perfect choice!

How a Dude Ranch Can Revive Your Life

12/17/2015 4:57:28 PM
It’s time to put away your cell phone, kick off the stilettos and replace them with a cute cowboy hat, jeans and riding boots. It’s Dude Ranch time!  Be prepared to live out your City Slicker fantasies by heading out to an authentic dude ranch and staying awhile. There are many reasons to have a well-earned break at a dude ranch and one reason is to immerse yourself in the true history of the old American West. So go ahead and summon your inner cowboy to ‘Saddle-Up Partner,’ and enjoy the many delights and challenges that a dude ranch vacation or get-away can offer.

Cowboy-Boots-And-Hat

Imagine the thrill of riding a beautiful horse amid mind-blowing scenery with expert, friendly wranglers on hand to ensure you have a safe and wonderful day, as you detox and decompress from the cares and concerns of your normal city life!  Whether a beginner or experienced rider, the exhilarating joy of a day spent in the saddle is hard to beat. And after a fantastic day riding the trails, treat yourself to a long, leisurely soak in the hot-tub, before sitting down to a satisfying home-cooked meal along with the company of some great folks to while away the evening hours.

Horseback riding

In addition, you get to roam around a spectacular piece of land with wide-open spaces usually with rivers or streams; participate in some campsite sing-alongs and meet like-minded people.Most importantly however, you get to walk around with your thumbs placed in your belt loops and tip your hat to everyone that walks by and say things like: “howdy” and “yee-hah."  The greatest part is that you can do it with a straight face, without sounding completely out of place. You will also have the freedom of just being yourself without worrying about what people are thinking or who is watching. Since many Dude Ranches discourage the use of a cell-phone or access to the internet you can experience a much-needed technology detox.  For a little while at least, you can absent yourself from all the depressing news and celebrity gossip and get to enjoy a real relaxing time-out surrounded by great down-home people.

Dinnertime

There’s nothing more American than the Old West, and there’s no better way to hit the reset button on your life and go back to the reality of waking up to the sounds of birds singing at dawn. Find your bliss in the wild and find your happiness in dude ranch life. It’s too easy to be constantly connected and to allow the material and the tangibles run your life. A visit to a dude ranch will give you a much-needed respite from the constant demands of being "on-line!" It will connect you with friendly, down-to-earth people and send a shot of yearning for the simple life deep into your soul. Yee-hah!

Some Amazing Horse Facts

12/8/2015 4:49:33 PM

Horses have played an important role in human history. They are magnificent creatures that have served dutifully alongside humans in times of war, farming and hunting as well. In addition, people have always relied on equines for transportation during ancient times. Horses were the first “engines” and were originally used to pull chariots and wagons until the invention of the automobile.

Horse Facts

Horses have been admired through the ages for their beauty, speed and strength. They also have many other characteristics and abilities that may not be as well- known but are still fascinating. There are plenty of horse facts and horse trivia to learn. Horses are a fun and clever animal. Here are some horse facts and trivia for you to enjoy. Amazing horse facts and horse Trivia:

  • Horses cannot vomit
  • Horses can sleep standing up or lying down
  • Horses are herbivores
  • Horses are able to run shortly after being born
  • In 2003, Italy, the horse was first cloned, which is Halflinger Mare
  • Horses like sweet flavors and usually reject anything bitter or sour
  • The teeth of the horse will never stop growing.
  • In 680 B.C, Chariot racing was the 1st Olympic sport.
  • Horses have bigger eyes than any other land mammal
  • The word chivalry comes from the French word for horse
  • Horses will poop 14 times per day
  • The weight of the average horse is about half of a ton and its brain is the size of a potato
  • The hoof of the horse is analogous to a human fingernail and the horses will stand on the middle fingers.
  • Horses have more memory power than elephants
  • No gall bladders for horses
  • Horses distinguish tones instead of specific words.
  • Horses see a different image in each eye, so horses can see 2 different images or pictures at the same time. They have binocular vision.
  • Horses are found in the cave paintings which date to about 15000 B.C
  • Freshly mowed grass cuttings may cause colic in horses
  • Horses will drink up to 25 gallons of water per day.
  • Horses can see better than a human at night but it takes the horse eyes longer to adjust from the dark to light and light to dark than humans.
  • Horses can see almost 360 degrees at any given time with the exception of blind spots directly in front or behind them
  • Horses have better senses of smell and hearing than humans
  • Horses cannot breathe through their mouths
  • Horses will produce approximately ten gallons of saliva per day.
  • The heart of the horse weighs about 10 or 9 pounds.
  • There are about 300 horse breeds and ponies available worldwide.
  • The teeth of the horse occupy more space in the head than it’s brain.
  • Generally, adult female horses have 36 teeth and males 40 teeth.

Horseback Riding For Beginners at a Dude Ranch

11/23/2015 12:00:52 PM

Horseback riding can be both a thrilling and challenging experience since interacting with such a large animal requires a specific level of expertise and patience. When done properly, horseback riding can be exciting, therapeutic and relaxing all at the same time. There are studies that show that horseback riding is beneficial for intellectual and emotional processes. Also, you’ll gain an appreciation of the symbiotic relationship created between you and your horse.

horseback riding

Horseback riding is one of the main activities you can enjoy while on a dude ranch vacation. If you have never ridden a horse before, you can prepare yourself in advance before your trip. Horseback riding for newbies can seem a little bit daunting at first but once you get going you’ll catch on quickly. Here are some tips to help beginners get started:

1. Get a head start.
Find an equestrian center or horse ranch in your area and get some practice time in the saddle  or lessons before your trip. Most dude ranches will give beginners some instruction but if you want to arrive ready to hop on a horse and ride, taking some lessons beforehand will allow you to get ahead of the game.

Riding Horses

3. Get proper riding attire.
As a beginner rider, you must have a helmet specifically made for horseback riding. A riding helmet should be purchased since riding helmets covers more of the head and are designed to protect riders against falls while riding. Other types of helmets aren’t suitable for riding.

Boots needs to be flat-soled, pointed, and they should have a short heel, all to aid the simple removal of the boot from the stirrup in case anything goes wrong.

4. Prepare yourself mentally.
It is very important that you are able to control your feelings while riding a horse. A relaxed and calm demeanor is best as your horse can sense the way you feel. If you lack confidence your horse will sense this and will be harder to control. Remember, your horse doesn’t know that you are a beginner so act confident and trust yourself and each other. 5.Prepare yourself physically. Strength and balance work together to help you relax and communicate with your horse so you can have the best ride possible. There are various exercises available that can help strengthen a rider and make them feel more secure in the saddle. Many of these can be found here

5. Start with an experienced horse.
Once you start riding, it is very important that you begin with a very experienced horse so at least one of you understands the routine. As you become more comfortable in the saddle you will have the opportunity to ride horses more suited for experienced riders. As you do, you’ll soon realize they're all different, just like people.

Experienced horses

Horseback riding for beginners is very exciting and with the proper training you will be able to enjoy all that this fun activity can offer you.

8 Signs You Need a Vacation

11/17/2015 11:52:14 AM

Веtwееn wоrk, kids, house chores, a social calendar аnd еvеrуthіng еlsе in between lіfе саn сеrtаіnlу bе quite hесtіс. Аftеr а whіlе, уоu can stаrt tо fееl lіkе а rоbоt running on auto-pilot. Іt саn bе ехhаustіng and  mаkе уоu fееl оvеrwhеlmеd аnd rundоwn.

need a vacation

Еvеrуоnе nееds а lіttlе rеst аnd rеlахаtіоn frоm tіmе-tо-tіmе. Ѕоmеtіmеs, уоu јust nееd tо tаkе а brеаk frоm thе rеgulаr rоutіnе аnd focus on your happiness and wellness. Аftеr аll, уоu саn’t ехресt tо bе hарру whеn уоu аrе fееlіng run-dоwn аnd оvеrwоrkеd.

Ѕо, whаt’s thе bеst wау tо еаsе thе strеssеs аnd tеnsіоns thаt hаvе  mаdе уоu fееl sо оvеrwhеlmеd? Тhе bеst wау tо dо thіs іs tо tаkе а vасаtіоn.

Неrе’s а lооk аt sоmе оf thе surе-fіrе sіgns thаt уоu shоuldn’t іgnоrе thаt dеfіnіtеlу іndісаtе thаt уоu nееd tо tаkе а vасаtіоn.

8 Signs Іt’s Тіmе tо Рlаn а Vасаtіоn

1.) Do you feel more irritable, impatient and on edge that even thе smаllеst lіttlе thіng (lіkе а sрооn fаllіng оn thе flооr) becomes a huge issue and mаkеs уоu snар at others? If so, you may be overstressed and headed for burnout

Feeling irritable

2.) Аrе уоu аlwауs feeling tіrеd аnd rundоwn? Are you wаkіng uр mоrе ехhаustеd thаn уоu wеrе whеn уоu wеnt tо bеd even though уоu gоt рlеntу оf slеер? Do уоu fееl lіkе уоu аrе drаggіng уоursеlf аrоund every day and fееl lіkе уоu саn’t snар оut оf іt? Sounds like you have already burned out and need a recharge

feeling tired

3.) Are you making more mistakes at work? Chronic stress often leads to increased errors in the workplace and counterproductive work practices. Try to finish up any open projects while double and triple checking your work and then plan a vacation.

4.) Dо уоu fееl lіkе уоu јust аrеn’t hарру? Еvеn during tіmеs whеn уоu shоuld bе very hарру, уоu саn’t seem to fіnd thе јоy іn аnуthіng? Dо hоlіdауs, bіrthdауs, sреndіng tіmе wіth уоur lоvеd оnеs, оr еvеn јust sіttіng dоwn аnd trуіng tо rеlах sееm lіkе mоrе оf а chore  thаn sоmеthіng enjoyable? Іf sо, thеn іt’s рrоbаblу а рrеttу sаfе bеt thаt уоu nееd tо hаvе sоmе tіmе аwау.

Feeling unhappy

5.) Do you constantly have aches and pains in your body? Headaches? Back problems? Tightness in the shoulders. When people are in stressful situations their bodies release chemicals that trigger inflammation and increase their sensitivity to pain. It’s time to take a well deserved break.

6.) Do you have trouble sleeping? Stressed or overworked people tend to have trouble winding down and falling sleep and also feeling rested. This could lead to daytime sleepiness as well from the lack of sleep.

7.) Do you rеmеmbеr thе lаst tіmе уоu sаt dоwn аnd hаd а соnvеrsаtіоn wіth уоur sіgnіfісаnt оthеr оr уоur fаmіlу thаt dіdn’t hаvе tо dо wіth wоrk or chores, thеn іt іs аbsоlutеlу tіmе tо рlаn а vасаtіоn to spend lots of quality time with your loved ones.

family dinner

8.) Are you overindulging in food or alcohol? Many who are stressed will reach for their favourite comfort foods or drinks as a coping mechanism to get them through their days. This could lead to unhealthy addictions. It’s best to address the problem and take some time off.

Overeating & overdrinking

Іf аnу оf thе аbоvе dеsсrіbеs уоu аnd hоw уоu аrе fееlіng, thеn іt іs сеrtаіnlу tіmе thаt уоu stаrt thіnkіng аbоut рlаnnіng а vасаtіоn. Whеrе shоuld уоu gо аnd whаt shоuld уоu dо? Wеll, оnе аwеsоmе орtіоn іs tо go оn а dudе rаnсh vасаtіоn. Νоt оnlу wіll уоu hаvе thе орроrtunіtу tо hаvе а grеаt tіmе with your loved ones in the great outdoors and not have to worry about meals (they are included and many have gourmet chefs), You can also enjoy many different types of vacations from relaxing and pampering to adventurous and active! Search our database of dude ranches and start planning that well deserved break!

Be a Cowboy for a Week at a Working Ranch

11/11/2015 11:18:50 AM

For your next vacation why not consider a working ranch. A working ranch differs from your typical guest ranch in that guests can choose to take part in a hands-on ranching experience as well as other fun activities.  If you have ever dreamed of being a cowboy or cowgirl then this is the ideal vacation choice for you. So grab a pair of cowboy boots and a cowboy hat and take a look at these two working ranches and book your vacation today!

Burnt Well Guest Ranch, Roswell, New Mexico 

Burnt Well Guest Ranch is an authentic working cattle and sheep ranch. They take on a few guests per year on the side to help supplement their ranching income. Because they can only accept small numbers this means that your vacation will be tailored to your needs. Whether you are an avid rider who would like to participate in actual ranch work or whether you are just a beginner who wants to work on your riding skills Burnt Well can accommodate you. If you are looking to take part in a cattle drive be sure to contact the ranch in advance to see which dates are programmed for these events. They offer two types of working ranch vacations: Dude Ranch Style and Authentic “Old West” Style On the Dude Ranch style cattle drive any number of cattle are driven from point A to point B. This drive could be from one to ten miles. You will typically sleep and eat most, if not all, meals at the ranch house. You may have the occasional sack lunch in the saddle bags. Since they are a working cattle ranch on 15,000 acres there is always plenty of cattle work to be done. The need to round up cattle and drive them various distances to pastures or pens could have you in the saddle from many miles and/or hours a day. The ranch can take about any age and any level of riding experience. This type of cattle drive is very common, if not the norm, at Burnt Well with most regular ranch stays.

New Mexico Cattle Drive
Burnt Well Guest Ranch

The Authentic “Old West” Style drives are a little more active for guests as you will camp out on the trail for at least three nights; however it can be four or five nights depending on the drive. You are usually in the saddle between five to ten hours a day. They start early, driving cattle by sun up and will try to be at camp by early afternoon. This drive can be between ten and fifteen miles a day depending on the location. Burnt Well provide a “cowboy” bedroll very similar to the ones cowboys had to use on cattle drives. The bedroll is a three inch mattress made up with sheets and blankets and rolled in a tarp. (Those cowboys probably didn’t use sheets, but they did have a padded bedroll with blankets which was rolled up in a tarp to keep out the dust and rain). They also provide cots for those who are a little squeamish about being right on the ground. Burnt Well has plenty of “cowboy” teepees in case of inclement weather and an outdoor privy. Your comfort is in their best interest.

New Mexico Cattle Drives
Burnt Well Guest Ranch

Hot meals are cooked in a Dutch oven and over a campfire for breakfast and dinners. You pack your own lunch right after breakfast from the wide variety of choices laid out for .Nightly campfires, a blanket of twinkling stars on a New Mexico black velvet sky and sweet fiddle music are some of the things to be enjoyed on these drives. The Authentic “Old West” Style cattle drives are adult drive only and for those who are in fairly good shape since you will be out on the range land for the duration of the drive. You will be actually driving cattle for miles and living out under the stars just as the cowboys did before trains and trucks came to being. At times the weather can be trying and unpleasant. This drive is for adventurous adults with plenty of stick-to-itiveness! The stuff memories, stories and bucket lists are made of.  

Laughing Water Ranch, Fortine, Montana

During selected weeks in May and September adults can sign up for a cattle drive at Laughing Water Ranch. For the first few days you will only be trail riding so that you can get acquainted with your horse and make any needed adjustments. There will also be a “Cattle Clinic” to prepare you for what to expect once you join the herd. This is a great opportunity to see some breathtaking Montana scenery. Then it’s time to get to work. Depending on the week you come out to the ranch, you will be rounding up, sorting, branding and moving cattle from their winter pasture to summer range in May or from summer range to the home ranch in September. The horses really love it and you'll love it too. It gets you off the beaten path - chasing cows and calves that have their own ideas of when to stop, and where to go.

Montana Cattle Drives
Laughing Water Ranch

You will be working approximately 170 head of cattle. The cattle belong to their local Judge and rancher, Terry Utter. Terry will be joining everyone on the drives and he is as helpful as he is entertaining. After a day of working cows your appetite will be hearty and the camp cook will put out a spread like you can only get out west. When the workday is done you will gather round the campfire for some entertaining story- telling and lots of laughter while you discus the day’s events. Guests will have the choice of either staying at night at cow camp, or returning each evening to the comforts of The Ranch. Cow Camp will be set up with spacious wall tents with comfortable cots. Remember to bring your sleeping bags, slickers, and sense of adventure!!!

Montana Cattle Drives
Laughing Water Ranch

So make sure to head to a dude ranch before its upcoming cattle drive. Search our extensive list of ranches by defining the ‘cattle drive’ criteria and book your spot before someone else nabs it.

Happy Trails!

What to Bring On a Dude Ranch Vacation

11/7/2015 7:44:36 PM

A dude ranch, or a guest ranch, is a ranch that opens it’s doors to people for tourism purposes. Especially for first time visitors, many people have a little dilemma of what to pack. Well, here is a generalized list of items you should bring on your dude ranch vacation.

Echo Valley Ranch & Spa

Shoes

Riding boots are an absolute must They should have a short heel which makes it comfortable for you to walk on uneven and rough terrain. They can be cowboy boots or another low heeled boot. Some dude ranches sell them  or offer a selection on site so ask beforehand. Some dude ranches have a formal dinner setting where you may need dressy shoes so confirm before you head out. Sneakers or runners are also recommended for other activities such as hiking or trail jogging. Some dude ranches have a pool or in the Summer months so flip-flops might be needed.

cowboy boots

Clothing

Casual attire is widely accepted and encouraged at most dude ranches. Jeans are a necessity for many dude ranch vacation activities so be sure to pack a few pairs. Padded pants, like cycling shorts, for riding are also advisable, especially for beginner riders. The other clothing you may pack will mostly depend on the weather and the season. If it’s Summer and the weather is bound to be hot and sunny, pack breathable light clothing. It will help to keep you cool but still protect you from the sun’s rays. Include light shirts, vests, shorts, jeans and light jackets. For protection from the hot elements bring a hat with a brim and sunglasses. If it is Fall or Winter and predicted to be cool, pack some heavier clothing for warmth and layering. Include wool or fleece jackets, long sleeve shirts, long pants, scarves, gloves, hats and socks. If you plan to be outdoors riding or on an excursion, bring a something to cover and protect your ears. Rain coats should be packed if it is going to be rainy at the ranch. Hats are essential to protect you against the heat from the sun. They should fit well to avoid being carried off in the wind, especially when riding. They don't necessarily have to be cowboy or cowgirl hats, baseball hats can also work. Most dude ranches sell hats as well so it's not necessary for you to carry one from home.

Cowboy-Boots-And-Hat

Gloves will be necessary if you plan to do a lot of riding or if you are attending a working ranch or cattle drive. Pick a pair that are made of flexible, but strong, leather. If you are planning to do any swimming or working out at the dude ranch, make sure you bring the proper attire for those activities as well.

Personal Items

Seeing as it is a dude ranch vacation, a camera/video camera should tag along with you. Make sure it isn't bulky because you may be carrying it with you on horseback and other excursions. Don’t forget to also bring the camera charger.  If you are planning on doing any bird watching or wildlife viewing a pair of binoculars will come in handy. Other essentials include phone chargers, hair dryers. Some ranches supply hair dryers so ask first because If they do, that's one less bulky item to carry.

Toiletries

Sunscreen and insect repellent are absolute musts for a dude ranch vacation. After being out in the sun or cold, keep your skin smooth with some moisturizer and chapstick. Depending on the dude ranch, you may need to bring your own shower items. You should always try to stay hydrated at the ranch so also bring a water bottle that's suitable for carrying around. Lastly bring and open mind and your sense of adventure. You may be exposed to new things out of your comfort zone. Throw caution to the wind and try something new!

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