Characteristics and amenities differ at each dude ranch in the West; however, there are definitive necessities and luxuries that set apart the truly spectacular ranches. What makes for the best dude ranch vacation—horseback riding, fishing, hiking, cuisine, comfort, staffing, cabins, location – is the largest unknown for most potential guests.
Take the curiosity and hours of endless web searches out of your next dude ranch vacation and create the perfect formula for the most exceptional experience out West. These eight ranches have over 480 years of experience, hosted several thousand guests, and are still going strong.
Great scenery and landscape- Flathead Lake Lodge
Located on the shores of Flathead Lake in northwest Montana, is the picturesque, 3rd generation-owned dude ranch aptly named after the majestic lake. There are very few luxury dude ranches in the Western United States that have shorelines on a lake so massive. The backdrop of the 1800-acre ranch includes historic lodges and numerous cabins including hand-hewn log furniture and handmade quilts as example of added personal touches. Flathead Lake Lodge offers countless activities for guests to enjoy the best of the Montana topography including horseback riding, fly-fishing, sailing, lake cruises, guided hikes, national park tours, golf and more!
Amazing evening activities- White Stallion
Evening is a magical time to make the multigenerational connection over authentic and classic entertainment. Very few high end and luxury resorts in the world provide as exciting Western performances as White Stallion Ranch, located 25 miles from the Tucson airport. Come dusk when the stars begin to shine, White Stallion unleashes their own star, Loop Rawlins who provides impressive lasso work and demonstrations. Another night welcomes in creepy critters from the desert, of course accompanied by Phil Garcia, who showcases the thrills and chills of nighttime crawlers. Line dancing with Jennifer of Two Feathers Dance Company all offer up exceptional evenings.
Activities galore- Three Bars Ranch
The horses bring the guests; nonetheless, it’s the other activity that drives the herd. The only ranch One of only two ranches in all of the Dude Ranchers’ Association to be located outside of America, this British Columbia-based expanse has some of the best off-the-saddle recreation in North America! Guided hikes, high-end mountain bikes, trap shooting, guided fly-fishing and equipment, indoor heated pool, outdoor hot tub and Jacuzzi and if that’s not enough, there is also a fully-equipped fitness center, ranch store, tennis court, volleyball court, petting zoo, horseshoe pit, kids fort and outside play area to keep the entire family busy.
Incredible lodging and accommodations – Lost Valley Ranch
Comfort and cleanliness, along with luxury and spaciousness, are desirable, if not, necessities for a ‘vacation’ for everyone in the family, especially mom. Lost Valley Ranch, one of the most accessible dude ranches to Denver International Airport, has 23 secluded cabins, nestled amongst the pine surroundings, all with shaded porches and lounge swings. Many of the authentic cabins feature multiple bathrooms and some even have their own Jacuzzi® tubs. The accommodations also include separate living rooms with fireplaces (wood is delivered daily), including king- and queen-sized beds, mini-refrigerators, Keurig coffeemakers and oversized towels, a must for all the dirt and delight that comes from activity on the ranch.
Great staff and family legacy – Rainbow Trout Ranch
One of the defining atmospheres about a ranch is the ownership. Rainbow Trout Ranch, located near the border of Colorado and New Mexico, is a spectacular representation of a family-owned and operated, legacy property. The Van Berkum Family are authentic and hands-on, all three generation! Linda and Doug, along with their son and daughter-in-law, operate one of the most welcoming and enjoyable dude ranch experiences in the world. A Van Berkum grandchild might be your wrangler, the grandson your fishing guide, or a cousin your pianist while waiting for a meal. RTR is absolutely about the family and best in western staff hospitality.
Authentic Western Experience – The Hideout Lodge and Guest Ranch
Location and setting are prime factors in choosing a dude ranch. Shell, Wyoming, east of Cody airport, which has multiple airline partners, and close to Yellowstone National Park, offers up a backyard of 650,000 acres. The name alone should give indication to the remote tranquility and breathtaking beauty of this northern Wyoming landscape. Throughout a week at the ranch, guests will traverse scenery and altitudes ranging from 4,200 to 13,100 feet, and, they will seldom see the same trail twice. Guest cabins, casitas and even a house are options for bedding down, all luxurious, spacious, and certainly appropriately themed for the experience.
Off the Grid ranch experience – Paradise Ranch
Getting unplugged and disconnected is fast becoming a major factor supporting reasons for a family vacation. Paradise Ranch relishes in the remote landscape and opportunity to get multi-generations back to the original theme of dude and guest ranch vacation. For over a century, Paradise Ranch has attracted families from all over the world due to the activity and experience of being immersed in the rugged Rocky Mountains including horseback riding across sage meadows, fishing for cutthroat trout, hiking throughout wildflowers, a campfire, s’mores and stories beneath a sea of stars, hiking to scenic overlooks and much more. Log cabins are available with one, two, three, and four bedrooms complete with fireplaces, full baths, showers, kitchenettes, washers and dryers and outdoor decks.
Easy to get to plus incredible views of the Teton’s – Triangle X Ranch
Dude ranches are typically located in remote areas, many times hundreds of miles from a major airport, as they occupy massive land acreage and expanses. However, should easy access be a priority in travel, Triangle X Ranch, located inside Grand Teton National Park, is a five-generation family business that understands the ease of quick transfers with luggage and multiple passengers. The ranch is located on Highway 89, 26 miles north of Jackson Hole Airport served by Delta, American, United, and Frontier Airlines with direct flights from Atlanta, Chicago, Cincinnati, Dallas, Denver, and Salt Lake City. Don’t forget, the ranch also provides transfers to and from the ranch from the airport. Oh yea the view is amazing from your porch!!
Give us a call at 307-250-1981 or shoot us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on each of the above spectacular Dude Ranches