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Feb 25th
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Home Places to Visit Dude Ranches Time to Explore Colorado’s Dude & Guest Ranches

Time to Explore Colorado’s Dude & Guest Ranches

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As the temperatures rise and the snow melts in the Rockies unveiling colorful wildflowers and roaring rivers, Colorado's Dude and Guest Ranches start gearing up for the summer season.

Whether you're looking for a long weekend, a short getaway, a full week of relaxation or some horseback riding, you'll want to check out one of Colorado's many dude and guest ranches.
It's like visiting a mini destination. Since most ranches are all-inclusive, all of your activities, meals and lodging are included in the daily rate.

There may be a few activities that are specific to an individual property, such as rock climbing, hot air ballooning or guided fishing, but guests are informed if these activities cost extra prior to their arrival. You decide how active you want to be while at the ranch. One thing is for sure, you'll make a number of new friends.

Each ranch offers a unique experience, so here are few things to consider when deciding where to go.


Accommodations range from rustic to ritzy: Whether looking for a cozy cabin to enjoy a fun family game, or a luxury mountain retreat with all the modern features of home, you will find something that fits your preference. Most ranches have photos of the rooms posted online so guests can check things out.

Home-cooked and gourmet meals

Ranch cuisine has expanded considerably since the days of cornbread and beans.

In addition to the old camp classics of beans and franks, meals have evolved into classically trained chefs, serving gourmet dishes and healthy alternatives.

You might look at whether the ranch serves their meals ‘family style', ‘formal', or have several cookouts throughout the week. Some ranches even offer "romantic" meals without the kids.


The ranches in Colorado offer everything from horseback riding, river rafting, fishing, hiking, tennis and mountain biking to crafts, photo workshops, swimming, hay rides, skiing, sledding, and much more.

You'll need to check which activities are available at the ranch you are considering.

Most ranches also offer a place to soak. Some have a camp hot tub and, at others, each cabin has its own private hot tub. Many offer services such as massages, several have saunas, and one even has its own hot springs.

Children's programs

If you are traveling with kids, be sure to check out the children's and teen programs available at the ranches.

Both educational and entertaining, the programs feature horseback riding and gold panning, to campfire building and archery.

Kids are matched up with others their own age and are led by trained, qualified counselors. The Teen counselors will keep even the most active teen entertained!

Discounted and themed weeks

Many ranches offer early- and late-season discounts as well as special themed weeks such as: Cattle Drives, Women's Yoga Weeks, Native American Weeks, Fall Culinary Retreats/Weekends, Art & Color Weeks, Rodeo Weeks, Couples Weeks, Fall Colors Weeks, Cowgirl Camps, and more.

Check with individual ranches to find out what they offer.

Reserving the dates that fit your schedule

If there is a specific time to you want to visit, your best bet is to book early. The Fourth of July, the first two weeks of August, and Labor Day are among the busiest vacation times.

If you wait too long the week you want or your first choice ranch may be booked. Rates generally range from $1,495 to $3,950 per person per week.

And, don't worry about what to bring. The ranch will send you a complete list of what to wear to cover all the activities offered at the property.

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Places to Visit