Looking to Plan a Last-Minute Vacation? Here is Why You Should Consider a Dude Ranch Vacation!

Have you looked at the calendar lately and thought “oh man, spring is here, summer is right around the corner and we have no plans for an incredible 2019 vacation”? Don’t you worry, the Dude Ranchers’ Association (DRA) has you covered and can help organize a great last-minute vacation! With over 100 ranches scattered throughout the Western United States and Canada, you are sure to find a ranch with availability to make your 2019 vacation one you will never forget. Have you considered taking an early summer vacation or perhaps an early fall vacation? There are many ranches in the Association that are still taking reservations for the 2019 season and are even offering some great discounts, read all about them here.

last-minute vacation

Gros Ventre River Ranch - Wyoming

What is the best time to visit a dude ranch you may ask? Personally, the folks at the DRA believe anytime is the best time to visit a dude ranch, but in reality, it comes down to what you are looking for in a vacation. You may be looking for a relaxing and rejuvenating vacation with crisp mornings, warm days and campfire nights, or maybe you are looking for a high energy and action-packed vacation with more activities than you could ever imagine. Whatever kind of vacation you are looking for, an all-inclusive dude ranch is a great destination.

The DRA has ranches in Arizona, Arkansas, British Columbia, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, Oregon, South Dakota, Washington and Wyoming, so the options are in a sense, endless! Most dude ranches in the North West are open from the end of May until the middle of September; of course, each ranch has their own dates of operation, but they are roughly the same. Memories will be made on a dude ranch vacation no matter when or where you decide to go, but to enhance your experience, choosing the right time is key.

If you are looking for a “kid free”, quieter vacation at a dude ranch, the ideal time to visit would be in early June or in the end of August/September. In June, the kids are usually still in school and the big families have not started vacation season quite yet. The end of August/September is also a great time because kids have gone back to school and the ranches are starting to wind down for the summer. Ranches usually designate adult only or specialty weeks during these times to ensure that guests looking for a “kid free” or relaxing and tranquil vacation get what they are looking for. Early summer and fall are some of the most picturesque times in the West. In the early summer the wild flowers are in full bloom and fill the landscape with bright, vibrant colors. In the late summer and fall the leaves are starting to change and the ranches glow with shades of yellow, orange and red. The sunrises and sunsets are exquisite and watching them from the porch of the lodge or your cabin in something you will always remember. The temperatures are a bit cooler and more enjoyable to be out in during the day; you will truly be able to take in all that the mountains, streams and animals have to offer.

last-minute vacation

Elkhorn Ranch - Montana

If you are looking for a vacation to take the entire family on, experience all of the great activities a ranch has to offer and reconnect as a family, then the ideal time is during the peak season of the summer, July and August. During the peak season you will find big families from all over the world joining in on the dude ranch fun! The kids’ programs for the ranches are in full swing and all ages will be engaged in different activities. The kids and adults alike will make new friendships and will create ever lasting memories together at the ranch. We can promise there is nothing quite like watching your kids play on a big, green lawn with nothing more than their imaginations and new friends to entertain them.

last-minute vacation

Lost Valley Ranch - Colorado 

Now, you might be a little more open to considering a dude ranch vacation and have thought about when you want to experience this adventure. Why is it a good idea to plan this big of a vacation at the last minute? There are three main benefits to last minute vacations. The first being that it is exciting and spontaneous. The best adventures seem to always be the most spotaneous ones! The second is that you are saving time. You are not wasting weeks and months trying to plan a vacation, by the time you get to the vacation it may not be as fun as you would like because the planning was draining. The third benefit is that you could save money! Who doesn’t like to save money? It was mentioned above that several ranches are currently running some stellar deals and discounts on their vacation packages, you do not want to miss out. (Read about them here.)

Although it may seem a little rushed, dude ranches make it easy to plan a quick last-minute vacation with their all-inclusive packages. All meals, lodging and most ranch activities are all included in one price at a dude ranch. No planning meals, planning activities to make everyone happy or having to research and plan lodging accommodations for the whole vacation, the ranch takes care of everything for you (besides travel arrangements.)The biggest worry you will have is deciding whether to go on a breathtaking horseback ride or relax and read a book by the pool.

last minute vacation

Rancho de la Osa - Arizona

All-inclusive packages, minimal planning, discounts and a vacation you will never forget, are you ready? Enjoy horseback riding, fly fishing, shooting sports, zip lining, river rafting, swimming and so much more on a dude ranch vacation. Most importantly though, you will enjoy a vacation creating memories that you will never forget. Contact the Dude Ranchers' Association today and plan your last-minute vacation in 2019 to a dude ranch, embark on an adventure like you never have before, you will be pleasantly surprised! 

Save this Pin for Later!

All-inclusive packages, minimal planning, discounts and a vacation you will never forget, are you ready? Enjoy horseback riding, fly fishing, shooting sports, zip lining, river rafting, swimming and so much more on a dude ranch vacation. Most importantly though, you will enjoy a vacation creating memories that you will never forget. Contact the Dude Ranchers' Association today and plan your last-minute vacation in 2019 to a dude ranch, embark on an adventure like you never have before, you will be pleasantly surprised!

Email Marketing Sign Up newsletter Keep in Touch with Ranch Vacations

 

4 Types of Dude Ranch Vacations

Whether you’re a staunch horseman who loves being in the saddle, or a rider that prefers activities to choose from in addition to riding, one of the members of the Dude Ranchers’ Association will fit the bill. All of the member ranches uphold the highest standards in the industry and are committed to preserving the Western way of life. The below sampling of ranches is sure to appeal to a variety of travelers:

Klondike Guest Ranch

Working Ranches Located at the base of Wyoming’s Big Horn Mountains, Klondike Ranch can accommodate six to 10 guests at a time. Guests are encouraged to work cattle with the ranch hands. Other activities include camping, fishing and hiking.      

Bar W Trail Ride Credit Danny Nestor

Traditional Ranches In addition to the riding program, guests of all ages at C Lazy U Ranch in Colorado can enjoy fly fishing, trap shooting, a ropes course, and an outdoor heated pool and hot tub. At Bar W Guest Ranch in Montana, 30 guests per week can ride on a million acres of varied terrain, as well as skeet shooting, archery and roping. The riding program at Greenhorn Ranch in the High Sierra Mountains of California accommodates all levels of experience and even encourages trotting and loping.   Luxury Ranches

Tanque Verde Recipe Pork Chop

Established in 1868, Tanque Verde Ranch in Arizona is recognized as the last luxurious outpost of the Old West. It provides guests with plush accommodations, unparalleled amenities and an array of things to do including horseback riding, mountain biking, fishing and hiking.      

Hideout Horses Running

Working + Luxury Ranches Guests are treated like family at Red Reflet Guest Ranch in Wyoming, exploring the 25,000-acre ranch via horseback, working cattle, riding mountain bikes, and enjoying abundant wildlife. Hideout Lodge & Guest Ranch is a unique combination of an upscale working cattle, riding and fly fishing ranch. Located nearby Yellowstone National Park, it’s one of the biggest operational ranches in Wyoming. For a complete listing of all-inclusive Dude Ranchers’ Association member ranches, visit DudeRanch.org.


 

Love is in the Air

Love is in the air! Well, maybe not quite yet, but Valentine’s Day will be here before we know it. Make this year truly special by surprising your significant other with a planned romantic getaway and giving the gift of shared memories that he or she will treasure for years to come. The below ranchers, offer effortless planning with all-inclusive vacations located in some of the most awe-inspiring areas of the Western U.S. and Canada.

Savor an Adults-Only Romantic Retreat. Fall in love all over again at Vista Verde Ranch in Colorado. Couples can enjoy a mix of relaxing time in the hot tub or private cabin with shared adventures out on the trail. Amenities at this luxury resort ranch include fine dining, plush accommodations and personal service. With a secluded setting 25 miles outside of Steamboat Springs, the ranch’s intimate setting will rekindle the romance in your relationship in no time. Winter adult only times are Jan. 3 through Feb. 12, 2015.

Vista Verde Dude Ranch Snow Trail Ride

Play a Round (or Two) of Award-Winning Golf. Located in Wickenburg, Arizona (just 75 miles from the Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport), Rancho de los Caballeros is a historic dude ranch that offers the ultimate dude ranch resort experience. Think peaceful horseback rides through the desert, soothing hot stone massages, lounging by the pool and laidback games of golf. Couples that like to bond on the greens will appreciate that the course is a Golf Digest top-five rated course and a top 100 course nationally.

Go Off the Grid to the Ultimate Winter Playground. Active couples can enjoy cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, dog-sledding and skiing in Wyoming at Triangle X Ranch and Triangle C Ranch. Centrally located in Grand Teton National Park, Triangle X offers secluded, quiet and comfortable lodging in cozy cabins highlighted with four-star dining. After a full day, return to the comfortable lodge and relax Western-style with a warm fire and a large outdoor jacuzzi. Triangle C is nestled in the Rocky Mountains between Jackson Hole and Dubois. Explore 600 miles of groomed trails in Wyoming’s abundant fresh powder, or opt for a luxurious snow-coach tour of Yellowstone.

Rancho de los Caballeros Golf Course

Get Up Close and Personal with Nature. Nestled on the banks of Wyoming’s Buffalo Fork River, Turpin Meadow Ranch offers endless views of the Teton Range. Completely restored in 2013, the ranch’s 80-year old cabins now have luxurious bathrooms, gas-lit fireplaces and locally crafted furniture. This winter, stay three nights in a refined Cabin, Chalet or Lodge Room with breakfast each morning and incredible wildlife watching from your front porch, and Jackson Hole Wildlife Eco Tour Adventures into Grand Teton National Park.

Elope to a Quiet B&B. Bed and Breakfast season at Sundance Trail Guest Ranch in Colorado runs from late September until mid-May. Enjoy home cooked, Western-style meals, lodging (with all the amenities you expect but without the big resort atmosphere) and horseback riding on the trails of Roosevelt National Forest in a gracious, quiet and relaxing atmosphere. Many couples have found this to be the perfect destination for a low key, simple elopement wedding – the ranch will even help you plan it! The winter season is also pet-friendly at Sundance Trail, just in case your special day wouldn’t be complete without your four-legged family member.

Latigo Dude Ranch Skiing

Ski to Your Hearts Content. Drink in the views, inhale the crisp mountain air and revel in some of Colorado’s most spectacular scenery during a dreamy Nordic ranch winter getaway to Latigo Ranch. Activities include cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and tubing, along with tempting amenities like a hot tub, historic log lodge (which offers a panoramic view of 100 miles of the Continental Divide) and complete food service. Rental equipment is available on-site, and you can also ski just for the day. You can also find great on-snow Fat Biking fun on the ranch’s groomed mountain trails.


 

Luxury and Kids Go Together at Resort Guest Ranches

Resort-style guest ranches combine the adventure of dude ranch vacations with the luxury of all-inclusive resorts for your kids and yourself. The Dude Ranchers Association has over 100 member ranches across the western U.S. and Canada with many hosting special programs and activities for kids. Below are a few ranches that do Luxury and kids like no other destination vacation spot.

At Colorado’s Tumbling River Ranch kids from age 3 to teen find adventure and independence. Kids are split into groups by age and spend their days going on scavenger hunts, hay rides, camp outs, horseback rides, hikes, and more. Teens love hanging out with the college-aged counselors while rock climbing, rafting, fly fishing, playing capture the flag, and going on an overnight pack trip.    

From morning until bedtime, Montana’s Mountain Sky Guest Ranch offers a variety of fun children’s activities that will entertain and delight all ages - like horseback rides, games in the heated swimming pool, fishing in the ranch pond, sing a longs, arts and crafts, nature walks, rodeos, tennis, and fun surprises cooked up by the creative staff .     

Wyoming’s Lost Creek Ranch and Spa, made famous last fall as the setting for Modern Family’s season premiere, lets kids leave their “boring parents” relaxing at the spa, playing golf, or exploring Grand Teton National park. Special kids-only activities are tailored to the interests and abilities of participants.      

Lone Mountain Ranch has an Outdoor Youth Adventure program that is designed for young people (ages 3-18) to have fun while developing an appreciation for nature and building their self-confidence through a wide variety of outdoor recreation activities. These experiences are geared to entertain and challenge the interests of varying age groups. When you combine the experiences we offer with our kind, energetic and knowledgeable staff, the kids can't help but have fun and look at life from a different perspective. The confidence they gain with their peers outdoors is something they can take with them wherever they go.  

The Home Ranch, in Colorado, is a family-friendly ranch that requires no advance planning, no childcare arrangements, no dinner planning, and no stress. You and your family can simply follow your individual bliss while we take care of everything else for you. Our all-inclusive children’s program and dedicated kids counselors offer a wide menu of daily activities and adventure for kids and teens - and make it very easy for the whole family to unwind, relax, and do what they want, when they want, how they want to do it.    

Lone-Mountain-Winter-Sleigh-Ride-Snow


 

 
This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Review our privacy policy for more information.