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Ranches by Experience

Small Dude Ranches Make for a Special Vacation

Quiet, relaxing, and rejuvenating vacations are highly sought after, especially with the crazy, busy world that surrounds us. Vacations, in reality, can be a bit overwhelming though, the planning and amount of people at the vacation destinations can be a lot to handle! You shouldn’t have to “handle” anything when you go on vacation, that is why small, intimate dude ranches are the perfect destinations for a quiet, relaxing, and rejuvenating vacation.

Small, intimate dude ranches offer an ideal setting for guests to truly relax and escape from the real world for a bit. The Dude Ranchers’ Association represents over 100 fantastic ranches and several of them have a small capacity and create a family-like environment that you will fall in love with. A handful of these small ranches let you disconnect to the level of not having cell phone service or internet, it may sound a little crazy but once you experience being totally disconnected, you will appreciate the vacation and ranch even more! Continue reading to learn about a few small, intimate DRA ranches that would make the ideal destination for your next vacation.

Small & Intimate Dude Ranches

Allen’s Diamond 4 Ranch – Lander, Wyoming

At the end of the road and at the base of the Wind River Mountain Range is where you will find Allen’s Diamond 4 Ranch. The Allen family has been around the Lander area for six generations and they know the true meaning of Western hospitality. With only five guest cabins on the ranch, all built by hand by the Allen’s, you truly become part of the family and experience the intimacy the ranch offers. Allen’s Diamond 4 Ranch is the highest and most remote dude ranch in Wyoming, here you will be able to escape reality and get back to your roots with no cell phone or internet service. Beautiful horseback rides through the Wind River Mountains and incredible fly-fishing opportunities await you. If you are looking for a ranch that is “off the grid”, Allen’s Diamond 4 is the place for you!

Allen's Diamond 4 Ranch

McGarry Ranches – Rexburg, Idaho

At McGarry Ranches in Idaho, you will find the real cowboys of the West! This working cattle ranch will offer you the experience of working alongside the cowboys in all of the day-to-day work and chores that take place on a working ranch. This ranch is located about 90 miles west of Jackson Hole, WY, far enough away from the hustle and bustle, but close enough to enjoy the famous tourist town either on your way to the ranch or after your stay. When you are at the ranch, you will feel like you are in a different world! With a capacity of only 10 people, this is the epidemy of a small, intimate dude ranch. The ranch crew is made up almost entirely of McGarry family members so you will definitely feel like part of the family here. Quaint cabins, delicious food, hard-working horses and a lot of cattle await you at McGarry Ranches.

McGarry Ranches

Medicine Bow Lodge and Adventure Guest Ranch – Saratoga, Wyoming

In 1917 Medicine Bow Lodge opened as a guest ranch and ever since it has been providing memorable vacations for all its’ guests! The history runs deep in this ranch and the owners, Tim and Debbie Bishop, do a fantastic job of keeping this history alive. With the ability to host just 15 guests, the ranch is the definition of small and intimate. The horseback riding, hospitality, and accommodations are family-oriented, and this ranch ensures an environment that will help you disconnect from the world and reconnect with the people and amazing things that surround you. The scenery is incredible, wildlife is abundant and activities such as horseback riding, fly fishing, hiking and more are offered for guests. Medicine Bow Lodge and Adventure Guest Ranch will leave you feeling refreshed and with memories that will last a lifetime!

Medicine Bow Lodge and Adventure Guest Ranch

Rawah Guest Ranch – Glendevey, Colorado

Rawah Ranch was started in 1948 to provide their guests with an original Western experience that was tailored to fulfill their guests dreams of coming West. Over 70 years later, they are still fulfilling those dreams for their guests! Rawah is an ideal vacation destination for families, couples or even solo travelers to disconnect from their busy everyday lives and reconnect with their roots and the world around them. Beautiful and well-trained horses, award-winning fly-fishing and top-notch food are just a few of the incredible things you will experience at this ranch. They can host up to 30 guests and they always do their best to meet their guests’ needs and make a personal connection. If you are looking for an incredible intimate ranch in the breathtaking Rocky Mountains, don’t overlook Rawah Ranch!

Rawah Guest Ranch

For more information on small, intimate dude ranches or to learn about other types of ranches, visit or contact a ranch vacation expert at the Dude Ranchers’ Association.


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Quiet, relaxing vacations are highly sought after that is why small, intimate dude ranches are the perfect destination for a rejuvenating vacation!