RanchSeeker Blog

Crane Workshop at Zapata Ranch -March 11 – 15, 2013

11/20/2012 11:44:04 AM

Crane Workshop at Zapata Ranch
Crane Workshop at Zapata Ranch

For the third consecutive year, Mike Forsberg, Dave Showalter and John Rawinski will be joining us for this outstanding Photo Trip at Zapata Ranch. Each year approximately 27,000 Sandhill Cranes migrate through the San Luis Valley, one of the most ecologically and geologically diverse landscapes in the world.  World renowned photographers, Michael Forsberg and Dave Showalter, along with expert naturalist and birder John Rawinski provide you the opportunity for behind-the-scenes access to this natural phenomenon. 

Join us on an intimate journey into public and private lands and wildlife preserves where Mike and Dave will share state of the art photo skills, while John will share his unparalleled knowledge for the area and the Sandhill Cranes. You will leave with a portfolio of beautiful photos (focused primarily on cranes, but also inclusive of other wildlife, landscape and bison), first-hand knowledge of this magnificent landscape and the management, history and conservation work that is being done to preserve it. 

Guests will stay at the Zapata Lodge and enjoy meals cooked by our gourmet chef, Mike Rosenberg. Don’t wait to reserve your spot for this one-of-a-kind opportunity!  Space is limited to 12 participants. Cost: $1,700pp includes all meals, activities, lodging and instruction.

Guest Ranch Vacations Are Fun!

10/10/2012 11:23:46 AM

Are you looking for a new, fun way to spend your next vacation? If so, look no further. A guest ranch vacation is lots of fun. Guest ranch vacations are an ideal way to spend time with your friends or family. RanchSeeker provides you with the opportunity to find the perfect guest ranch vacation for your family and friends from the U.S. to Canada to Mexico, Ecuador and Argentina. Guest ranch vacations offer wide open spaces, unsurpassed majestic scenery, a taste of adventure, peace and quiet, and a chance to live life the way it used to be lived.

Guest Ranch Activities

Ranch Seeker guest ranches offer a wide variety of activities from horseback riding for beginners to daylong treks for the more experienced rider, from swimming in pristine lakes to heated indoor pools; tennis, hiking, water rafting, archery and so much more. Each guest ranch offers different activities so be sure to ask before booking your next vacation.

Guest Ranch Accommodations

Guest ranch accommodations vary from guest ranch to guest ranch. From rustic to deluxe one thing for sure you will be comfortable in either your own cabin or room.

Rooms at Echo Valley Ranch & Spa
Rooms at Echo Valley Ranch & Spa

Guest Ranch Mealtimes
 Mealtimes at guest ranches are always a special event. It’s a time to enjoy delicious home-style cooking or gourmet fare with your fellow guests. Food is usually bountiful and at most guest ranches alcohol is also served.

Nightime at Guest Ranches

After the sun has dropped below the horizon it is time to enjoy campfires, singing, dancing and roasting marshmallows over an open flame. If you went riding that day you may wish to soak in a nice hot Jacuzzi and gaze at the stars. There are also games and movies to entertain the young and the old Whatever you decide to do on your next guest ranch vacation I am sure that you will agree that there are plenty of options for everyone. Let RanchSeeker help you find your ideal guest ranch vacation using our user friendly Dude Ranch Finder.

Happy Trails,

Horseback riding is fun!
Horseback riding is fun!

The Guest Ranch Experience in Pictures! (Part 1)

11/4/2011 11:25:01 AM

They say that a picture is worth a thousand words so today I thought that I would share some of the many beautiful photos of guest ranches listed on RanchSeeker.

A guest ranch vacation is an excellent alternative to just sitting on the beach with your friends or family. It enables you to reconnect with nature and loved ones while surrounded by breathtaking scenery. There are always lots of fun activities to do while staying at a guest ranch like horseback riding, hiking, skeet shooting, roping, swimming and spa treatments. Many guest ranches are open all year round so you can choose to celebrate special holidays away from home in a guest ranch setting.


 Marble Mountain Guest Ranch  in Somes Bar California offers steel-head flyfishing trips as just one of their many fun activities.


  Bar Lazy J Guest Ranch  in Parshall, Colorado provides non-stop activities for kids as part of their Kid's Program.


  Southern Cross Guest Ranch  in Madison, Georgia is best known for its exceptional hands-on horseback riding program.


 Red Horse Mountain Guest Ranch  in Harrison, Idaho offers guided kayak tours that explore the chain lakes of the Coeur d’Alene.


 Bonanza Creek Guest Ranch is in Martinsdale, Montana. Here the focus is on horseback riding where you can help move herds of cattle.


 Get in touch with your inner cowboy at Burnt Well Guest Ranch in Rosewell, New Mexico.

There are many guest ranches to choose from for your next guest ranch vacation. Use RanchSeeker's Dude Ranch Finder to help you find the ideal ranch for you.

Happy Trails,

Kids and Guest Ranch Vacations

10/20/2011 12:55:10 PM

When school lets out for the holidays either for spring break, summer, Thanksgiving or Winter break parents find themselves wondering where to go with their families. A great option is a guest ranch vacation. Many guest ranches are kid friendly and offer fun kids programs. Be sure to check with each individual guest ranch before booking your vacation to make sure your little ones and not so little ones will have lots of activities to keep them entertained. Many kid friendly guest ranches will allow children as young as 6 years old to ride but this can vary from ranch to ranch. Make sure you ask whether they have babysitting available should your kids be too young to ride with you.


Most ranches offer horseback riding lessons so you and your kids can take some lessons before hitting the trails whether it is your first time or just to perfect your riding skills. Be sure to ask for a helmet or bring your own. Some guest ranches offer discounted rates for children but if they are old enough to ride this may not be the case. Guest ranches may offer very extensive kid’s programs or they may have a lot of kid friendly activities to choose from. Many ranches have swimming pools, farm animals, river tubing, gold panning and fishing which are all suitable for children of varied ages.


 The more extensive kid’s programs may include a counsellor for each group of kids in certain age ranges. They supervise all activities such as nature hikes, riding, scavenger hunts, fishing and arts and crafts. They may even host separate campfire cookouts complete with roasted marshmallows and ghost stories. Your kids can choose to spend their days playing with new found friends or with you. Taking your family to a guest ranch will create lasting memories of fun times spent together as a family.  A guest ranch vacation is a fun option for a family vacation where your time will be spent enjoying the outdoors, learning new skills and away from the television and video games.


 RanchSeeker features many guest ranches that are kid friendly and that offer entertaining kids programs. Use our simple Dude Ranch Finder to find your next family vacation.

Happy Trails! 

Fun Winter Activities at a Dude Ranch

10/7/2011 12:17:53 PM

As the temperature starts to drop many of RanchSeeker’s dude ranches are gearing up for their winter season. Gone are long, hot sunny days paving the way for winter fun. There are many activities that you can still enjoy at a dude ranch during the cooler winter months. Different dude ranches offer different winter activities depending on location, ranch amenities and the size of the dude ranch. Below are just some of the fun activities that you can find on your next dude ranch vacation.

1)      Skiing & Snowboarding. Some dude ranches like, Vista Verde Guest Ranch, are located near world famous ski resorts. You can enjoy all the amenities of staying at a dude ranch and spend a few days hitting the slopes. Check with your ranch of choice, in advance, to see whether they can provide you with ski equipment and transportation to the mountain base.

    2)      Cross Country Skiing & Snow Shoeing. At many dude ranches like, Ranch 4 Saisons, you can strap on a pair of snow shoes or cross country skis and head out to explore the snowy woods or meadows. A great way to spend the day outdoors and work up an appetite for a hearty dinner.


3)      Sleigh Rides. Various guest ranches, like Bar W, offer sleigh rides accompanied by hot chocolate and cozy blankets. It’s a special way to spend time with family and friends.  

4)      Snowmobiling. Explore the back-country wilderness by snowmobile on your next winter dude ranch vacation. Western Pleasure Guest Ranch is just one guest ranch that offers a snowmobile package.  

5)      Horseback riding. Winter horseback riding at a dude ranch is an unforgettable experience; one of the highlights of a winter ranch vacation when weather conditions permit.  

6)      Dog-Sledding. Dog sledding is now being offered at some of the dude ranches and is a great opportunity to experience what can only be described as a truly one-of-a-kind adventure.    


 7)      Spa. For a truly relaxing winter-getaway many dude ranches offer spa treatments that you can enjoy in a winter setting.  

Whatever you decide to do on your next dude ranch vacation RanchSeeker’s Dude Ranch Finder can help you find the ideal guest ranch.   Happy Trails,

Here Comes the Bride! Guest Ranch Weddings!

6/8/2011 7:59:01 AM

The snow has finally stopped falling and temperatures have begun to rise and brides to-be all over are starting to plan their weddings.Do something different than everyone else and have a guest ranch wedding. Every bride dreams of the perfect wedding that is unique and won’t soon be forgotten by them or their guests. With so many great locals to choose from it can be a daunting process when trying to decide where to get hitched. Many brides nowadays opt for a tropical destination when planning their wedding but how about tying the knot at a guest ranch wedding?

A guest ranch wedding is a unique experience and many guest ranches today offer special services that cater to the bride to-be. Some ranches such as The Three Bars Ranch provide you with a guest ranch wedding planner to help you organize everything down to last detail. Imagine saying your vows in front of family and friends with a backdrop of hundreds of acres of pristine wilderness and spectacular views? Many guest ranches offer several different guest ranch wedding packages from indoor to outdoor locations.


Echo Valley Ranch & Spa is recognized as the premiere guest ranch wedding destination in the Cariboo region of British Columbia, with fifteen years of experience of hosting guests and special events from all parts of the world. Choose from a variety of ceremony settings including the Baan Thai wedding pavilion, the outdoor covered barbeque area, outdoor decks, the hay barn, or in a forest or meadow setting for your destination guest ranch wedding package.


 Or how about hosting your guest ranch wedding beside a lake and arriving by a horse- drawn carriage?

At Meadowlake Ranch you can do that and so much more. With various guest ranch wedding packages to choose from and different types of accommodations from cabins to tipis there is bound to be something for every bride.


A guest ranch wedding is a great alternative to your typical wedding venue and a beautiful spot to start your life together as husband and wife. Your guest ranch wedding can be as formal or casual as you like and with accommodations on site you can spend more time with your loved ones and create memorable moments that will last a lifetime.

There are various ranches that offer guest ranch wedding packages on RanchSeeker so be sure to ask them for more information when planning your upcoming guest ranch wedding.

Happy Trails!

Picking the Right Dude Ranch for You!

5/25/2011 10:22:11 AM

There are many types of dude ranches that one should be familiar with before deciding on where to go for a ranch vacation. On RanchSeeker’s easy to use Dude Ranch Finder we allow people to search by ranch category to better find what they are looking for in a ranch vacation. There are so many different dude ranches to choose from that offer a variety of activities and services that sometimes it can be confusing if you don’t know which types of ranches specialize in what.

A Guest Ranch is ideal for people who are looking to go away on a dude ranch vacation for 2 or more days.Ranch packages include accommodation, food and horseback riding and may offer more services. Many of these ranches are also children friendly.

A Dude Ranch B & B is similar to a typical bed and breakfast.It offers bed and breakfast for overnight visitors but it also offers horseback riding to its guests. They are generally smaller and offer cozy accommodations A Dude Ranch Resort is a guest ranch that offers activities at the Ranch in addition to horseback riding such as swimming pools, mountain bikes, tennis, golf, skeet shooting etc. This option is great for people looking to experience lots of varied activities.

A Dude Ranch Spa is a Ranch that offers a "Health and Well Being" program together with a full service spa.This is ideal for people who want to be pampered after a long day's ride. The Hill's Health and Guest Ranch is a great example of a ranch spa. They offer guests a refuge of renewal and rejuvenation while being surrounded by peaceful countryside reflecting the true Canadian west


 Finally last but not least a Working Ranch is a dude ranch that has its own cattle operation with the herd managed by cowboys .Guests can often participate by helping the resident cowboys with their day to day work.This is a great option for those who want to try their hand at being a “real cowboy”. Other features offered by guest ranches could also be available. McGarry Ranches is the perfect ranch to earn your spurs.They are a working cattle outfit that work the herd as the need arises, not a specific activity at a specific time.

Most of the week is spent tracking and gathering strays, trailing cattle to new units for range management, doctoring sick or injured stock, putting out salt, riding fence, sorting in the open, riding herd in some of the most scenic country in the world. You won't find nose to tail riding here.


 So what are you waiting for? Check out the many dude ranches listed on RanchSeeker and book your next dude ranch vacation today. Happy Trails   

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