Dude Ranch Life: Dancing and history and Pilates, oh my!

With opening day nearing quickly, we are putting the finishing touches on all the old favorite aspects of the ranch, but also some “new and improved” features.  It’s an exciting time, and a little frantic.  The summer season of 2016 is going to be a launch pad for a few new activities and opportunities for our guests.  From the horse and bike-friendly obstacle course to the dance lessons, Pilates, history on wheels, and the new Confidence Course, there are a lot of new additions.

  • History on Wheels- Join Charlie for a drive around the Elk River Valley to learn some of the history and a lot of great anecdotes about the area surrounding the ranch.  Wait, yes, you did read that correctly. Charlie is hosting an activity.  Hold onto your hats–the Suburban is going to fill up quickly!
  • Pilates- This is one for the early birds who aren’t ready to sleep in and relax.  Devyn will lead an all-levels Pilates class early one morning for those looking to sneak in one more activity during their stay.  Get your core fired up and ready to go for the day!
  • River Read- This activity developed organically over the past couple years, and we decided to formalize it as an option.  If you have a friend or family member heading out to fish, and would like some time on the river, but have no interest in casting a line, then the River Read is for you!  We will have a nice outdoor chair for you, a cool drink, and a beautiful setting for you to relax, read, and watch the river roll by you.  You just need to provide the book.
  • Dance Lessons- You’ve asked, we are delivering.  Get some in-depth instruction prior to all the dancing that MIGHT ensue during the week.  We’ll teach some couples dances, some line dances, and who knows what else.  You’ll be ready to show off your new tricks at the Barn Dance or Music Night.
  • Confidence Course- As our old horse obstacle course started to fall apart, and our mountain bike skills park needed some TLC, an idea sprung.  Why not build one that can accommodate both bikers and horses!  Crazy, right?  We don’t think so.  As we speak we are moving rocks, chainsawing logs, and creating a playground for both bikers and horses to gain confidence and skills.  It doesn’t hurt that the location is in an idyllic setting right by the river and just a short ride from the ranch.  This will be a work in progress, and we look forward to adding to it as the summer goes on and in future years.
  • Round ’em Up- Our fall cattle round-up weeks might look a little different this year, as we have some new cows to work with.  The ones we’ve had the past several years are just a little too scrappy and wild, which made rounding them up so challenging that there were still some left out in the forest at the start of winter time.  Since that is not good for the cows, the forest, or a cattle rancher’s pocket book, we’re starting out this year with some cow-calf pairs.  Rounding up the gals may be a bit more tame, but should also be a lot more successful.  We’re also looking to plan a unique all-day ride during those fall cattle round-up weeks to get out and explore some new terrain.

Whew, it looks like those of you coming to the ranch this summer might want to extend your stay for an extra week.  So much to do and so little time!