There is truly nothing comparable to smelling the fresh breeze roll through the plains and of the western states or watching the sunset behind some of the most gorgeous mountains in the world or, most importantly, making memories with your family while you all experience the great outdoors together. Across some of the states that might come up least on people’s bucket lists are actually some beautiful and inspiring destinations. We are going to give you a little sneak peek into some of the very best dude ranches in Wyoming, Montana, and Colorado.
I remember our families first trip to a dude ranch in Arizona, my boys and husband were a bit skeptical. It turned out to be one of our favorite trips of all time. Trust me when I say, these dude ranches won’t just put you to work in some of the most rewarding ways but they are actually at the top of our list when it comes to luxury as well. That’s right over the last 10 years or so, many of these ranches have come to be luxury resorts in the hopes of attracting families that want to experience the best of both worlds on their vacations.
A Peek at the Best Dude Ranch – Wyoming, Montana, and Colorado
Best Dude Ranch – Wyoming
Brush Creek Ranch
Tucked among the Snowies, as Wyomingites belovedly call this stunning mountain range, you will find the hidden gem of Brush Creek Ranch in Saratoga. With their 30,000 acres, you surely would miss this place if you didn’t know just what to look for. We rate this as the absolute best dude ranch in Wyoming, Montana and Colorado. It is extremely luxurious and offers some of the best hospitality you can find. They offer all-inclusive packages, so once your vacation begins all is smooth sailing. It is an amazing place to learn about ranching, practice yoga with a view unlike any other, experience spa treatment that is guaranteed to bring you relaxation, hike, fish, or go shooting. Even though the ranch feels extremely secluded and private, there is a private airport quite close and the ranch will assist you in each step of planning. Check Current Prices Here!
A Bar A Ranch
If you are looking for tradition in your search for the best dude ranch there is no better place to look than one of the oldest establishments in the country. Get this according to Travel + Leisure’s research on the ranch, their insurance policy is so old that it is possibly the only ranch left where you do not have to ride without a wrangler if you are deemed skilled enough on your own (Magill, 2010). It is also still both an operating and a guest ranch. As for activities, the list includes just about anything you can think of. Guests love the option of both swimming at the pool or floating down the river in a tube, as well as tennis, golfing, mountain biking, and of course all the typical dude ranch activities.
Best Dude Ranch – Montana
5. MONTANA – PAWS UP RESORT
Paws Up Resort is the most luxurious glamping resort in the United States. The ranch is situated in some of the most gorgeous land located on 37,000 acres in Greenough, Montana. With 10 miles of the Blackfoot River flowing on their property, they are known for some of the best fly fishing in the United States.
The location is absolutely stunning and there are plenty of activities to enjoy, including fly fishing, hiking, and more. In addition, they have over 100 miles of trails on property for horseback riding, biking, hiking, running, and walking.
Paws Up has a special Spring Break Package that is pretty much All Inclusive –
- Three nights of accommodations (Book 3 nights and receive a 10% discount off lodging rates. Book 4+ nights and receive a 20% discount off lodging rates.)
- A $500 prepaid Resort credit per person per stay (included in package pricing) to use as you wish on activities and excursions or spa treatments
- All daily meals, nonalcoholic beverages and a selection of beer, red and white wine and well liquors
- Access to a plethora of on-property activities including Wilderness Workshops, cooking demonstrations and your choice of activities in the Montana wilderness
2) The Ranch at Rock Creek
Glamping is a trend that has recently taken storm and this ranch does it just right. It’s our pick for the best dude ranch in Montana because they have found the perfect balance between luxury and the experience of a dude ranch. They’re rated a 5 Star resort by Forbes, making them the first ranch to receive this honor. Whether you’re looking for a romantic getaway or a family retreat, you can find exactly what you’re looking for at Rock Creek. Their rates are all inclusive, meaning whatever food or activities you desire are right at your fingertips. Check Current Prices Here!
Rocking Z Guest Ranch
The Rocking Z was a fully operating ranch until the early 2000s when it was switched over to a guest ranch, and we sure are all lucky it did. It’s a gorgeous property and we absolutely love their focus on staying green and eco-friendly. They also treat their horses with so much love and train them without coercion techniques. Despite recently being an operating ranch, they have an extremely laid back mentality. Their goal is to provide a relaxing and restoring retreat by allowing you to explore on your own terms. Check Current Prices Here!
Triple J Wilderness Ranch
Nestled among the fittingly named Sun River and many acres of untouched wilderness, the small magnificent Triple J Wilderness Ranch is waiting for you! The ranch holds just 24 guests, so you can count on becoming a close-knit community even if your stay is short. In the summer months, this ranch will keep your visit full of outdoor activities. Obviously, riding is what you will be spending most of your time doing but the fishing out in Montana is also incredible as well as hiking.
Best Dude Ranch – Colorado
Obviously, family vacations are all about making great memories together but let’s be real, mom & dad needs some time away to make it a truly relaxing vacation. Latigo Ranch makes sure to specialize your trip to make that happen by balancing out time spent together and separate adventures. Your kids will absolutely love the outings made just for them which even include a campout. You have just got to see the photos of this ranch and it’s unbelievable views to understand why it is one of the best ranches in Wyoming, Montana and Colorado overall.
Rainbow Trout Ranch
There is definitely something about Colorado that awakens your adventurous spirit and maybe it’s the fact that men like Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid once roamed the west. In fact, they spent much of their time right on the land of what is now the Rainbow Trout Ranch, so you know their won’t be any shortage of storytelling among the cowboys and ranchers here. It’s still family owned and operated giving it a homey feel, but of course once you leave the homestead it’s all about adventure. They even offer whitewater rafting down the magnificent Rio Grande!
Smith Fork Ranch
Last but not least, we bring to you Smith Fork Ranch in western Colorado. Their farm to table food is unbeatable and right off property, you can find some awesome wineries and orchards to visit. The lodgings have a true old western touch, but have all been updated to meet modern standards of luxury. This is also another small ranch where bonds form quickly and you’ll feel like you’re leaving with a whole new set of friends.
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