More parents are realising the value of a digital detox. A chance to uplug from our interconnected world and get back in touch with nature, these holidays are also a win win when it comes to spending quality time with the kids. Tour operator, Ranch Rider has rounded up eight exciting weeks where all ages can trade technology for a taste of the cowboy lifestyle.
Tony Daly, Managing Director of Ranch Rider comments “Ranch stays offer unrivalled opportunities to reignite our passion for the outdoors; cattle drives, team penning, trail rides and guest rodeos ideal for families who want a change of pace, and a chance to experience the beauty of the natural world from the back of a horse.”
With fossil hunts, roping lessons and a Cowboy & Indian adventure day there’s always something new to learn out west. The children’s program at Montana’s Triple J Guest Ranch is packed full of pursuits, and on request the owners will organise a day of guided fly-fishing for the whole family. Perfect for the brood who love the outdoors the ranch adjoins the Bob Marshall Wilderness, the jewel in America’s back country crown. 6- nights with Ranch Rider from £1,235pp (two sharing), from £1,335pp (13-17 years) and from £1,223pp (6-12 years) including accommodation, meals, most ranch activities, taxes, transfers and gratuities. Excludes return flight from £879pp and from £765pp (under 12 years). Departures 15 June to 16 August.
At Wyoming’s Vee Bar Guest & Working Ranch families can participate in the weekly cattle drives and little ones also have the opportunity to practice sheep herding. A holiday where guests can kick back at the end of the trail, the ranch features a hot tub and saloon. 6- nights with Ranch Rider from £1,349pp (two sharing) and from £1,180pp (6-13 years) including accommodation, meals, ranch activities (including riding), use of ranch facilities, taxes and gratuities. Excludes car hire from £243 and return flight from £789pp and from £687pp (under 12 years). Departures 08 June to 30 August.
Siwash Lake is a luxury guest ranch surrounded by 80,000 acres of pristine British Columbia wilderness. Totally off grid and aiming to work in harmony with nature, the eco-friendly property is entirely self-sustained and generates its own electricity from solar power. Its ethical stance also translates to the ranch’s activities including, animal tracking, horse care, nature walks and pony rides. 6-nights with Ranch Rider from £3,560pp (two sharing), from £2,665pp (13-18 years) and from £2,219pp (4-12 years) including accommodation, meals, most ranch activities, taxes and gratuities. Excludes car hire from £289 and return flight from £859pp and from £748pp (under 12 years). Departures 15 June to 30 August.
America’s first national park is just begging to be explored, and at Lone Mountain, an upscale guest ranch, guided horseback rides and nature hikes are available within Yellowstone’s boundaries. Families can also experience a day of leisurely fly fishing, saddle up for a wildlife safari or book a “Vinyassa” style yoga class. In the evening teens have the option to head off on an overnight camp out while the adults enjoy a gourmet dining experience. 7-nights with Ranch Rider from £1,799 (no single supplement), from £1,625pp (13-17 years) and from £1,349pp (6-12 years) including, accommodation, meals, house wine and draught beer, most ranch activities (including riding), use of ranch facilities, taxes and transfers. Excludes gratuities and return flight from £899pp and from £783pp (under 12 years). Departures 31 May to 18 October.
The Ranch At Rock Creek in Montana was once a billionaire’s home. Now a luxury resort, the ranch is home to the “Little Grizzlies” kids club. Children from four to 12 years can participate, the schedule of themed activities including; Rivers & Ponds, Cowboys & Horses and Plants & Rocks. The accommodation brings a whole new meaning to the term “glamping,” the four family canvas cabins furnished in a rustic camp style. 6-nights with Ranch Rider from £3,995pp (two sharing) and from £3,225pp (6-12 years) including accommodation, meals, most ranch activites, taxes. Excludes car hire from £243, gratuities and return flight from £879pp and from £765pp (under 12 years). Departures year round. The Colorado Trails Guest Ranch offers a wide range of horseback adventures from family breakfast rides to cattle drives for the more experienced. Complete with it’s own western town parents and kids can stroll down “Main Street,” which features a trading post, soda fountain, jail, saloon, and an opera house for live evening entertainment. 7-nights with Ranch Rider from £1,355pp (two sharing) and from £1,219pp (5-12 years) including accommodation, meals, most ranch activities, taxes and gratuities. Excludes car hire from £243 and return flight from £849pp and from £739pp (under 12 years). Departures 01 June to 21 September.
The Red Horse Mountain Guest Ranch tops the list when it comes to adventure. Families have the option of zip-lining across 1,100 metres, searching for hidden treasure on a geo-caching trek, or shooting their bow and arrow at a life size mountain lion on the 3D archery course. And, not forgetting the opportunity to schedule family rides across the ranch’s stunning 300,000 acres. Where city slickers meet modern day luxury, gourmet dining and fine wines are on offer to guests. 6-nights with Ranch Rider from £1,819pp (two sharing) and from £1,620pp (6-12 years) including accommodation, all meals, ranch based activities, taxes and gratuities. Excludes transfers from £60pp and return flight from £869pp and from £757pp (under 12 years). Departures 08 June to 23 August.
There’s an adventure for all ages at the Western Pleasure Guest Ranch. Horseback rides lead to hidden waterfalls ripe for a quick dip, and bear, deer and Red Tailed hawks are often spotted out on the trail. Blue Ribbon trout fishing, kayaking (on Lake Pend Orielle, Idaho’s largest), skeet shooting, cattle sorting competitions and the children’s guest rodeo have genuine appeal for wannabe cowboys. 6-nights with Ranch Rider from £1,295pp (no single supplement) and from £1,020pp (6-12 years) including accommodation, all meals, ranch activities, gratuities and taxes. Excludes car hire from £243 and return flight from £869pp and from £757pp (under 12 years). Departures 01 June to 13 September.