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Riding holidays for budget broncos and luxury city slickers

8th January 2013 Print
Las Vegas' National Rodeo Finals

Whether budget bronco or luxury city slicker, everyone will appreciate the 2013 Ranch Rider brochure, as all of the latest additions have genuine cowboy appeal. The tour operator is also running two new escorted tours covering the Calgary Stampede and the Las Vegas Rodeo Finals, as the team is keen to showcase its firsthand knowledge of the west, now spanning 16 years.

Tony Daly, Managing Director of Ranch Rider, comments “No matter what the budget, our new brochure will satisfy the cowboy cravings of anyone looking to live out their western dream. There are numerous ranches scattered across North America, but as a specialist we see it as our job to handpick riding holidays that allow travellers to truly appreciate how the west once was, and still is.”

Due to its remoteness, the Island Ranch is perfect for more intimate ranch holidays, but in 2013 Ranch Rider will be offering additional private bookings for couples who want to have this unspoilt wilderness all to themselves. Composed of 5,000-acres and situated on an actual island on the Cimarron River, devoted duos will be able to soak up the surroundings and enjoy a list of tailored activities for a minimum four nights, with the option to extend their exclusive stay or head off on a 6-night starry-eyed self-drive from £450pp (two sharing) with Ranch Rider including car hire and accommodation. Currently exclusive to the tour operator, private hire of the ranch for a minimum of 4-nights costs from £935pp (two sharing) including sparkling wine and strawberries dipped in chocolate on arrival, moonlit/romantic buggy ride, breakfast out on the trail over looking the sage brush hills, accommodation, meals, most ranch activities and taxes. Longer stays can be arranged. Transfers available at £75pp. Departures April through November. Return flight from £739pp.

The New Haven Working Ranch in Wyoming might as well have fallen off a film reel. Situated on the border with South Dakota, the surrounding landscape showcases the very same backdrops featured in “Dances With Wolves” movie. Devils Tower is also only a short drive from the ranch, however, Cisco the spotted donkey certainly grabs his share of the limelight – the talented mule often pitching in for greenhorns as a live steer. Natural “Parelli” horsemanship lessons are available and on a hot day guests can cool off with their mounts and swim the horses in the lake. Hiking, target shooting, boating and trout fishing are alternative pursuits, with off ranch excursions to local rodeos, country dances, and horse auctions appealing to true wild west enthusiasts. 7-nights from £995pp (two sharing) including, accommodation, meals, most ranch activities, taxes and gratuities. Excludes transfers £75pp. (16-years +). Departures May to October. Return flight from £789pp.

Guests at Wyoming’s Brush Creek Ranch & Spa might be horse lovers first, but the luxury resort takes indulgence to a whole new level. Inspired by Native American healing and the surrounding landscape, its spa treatments can be enjoyed by the sparkling banks of the creek, in a teepee or in a remote mountain top yurt. A personal trainer is also on hand, and proving that this wilderness is food for the soul there’s even the option to practice sun salutations on the expansive deck of Falcon Peak Overlook. Guided ATV wildlife tours, geo-caching, mountain biking and zip-lining are just some of the pursuits complimenting the daily horseback rides – and guests can still drive the cattle. Western décor with a touch of glamour, there is a choice of lodge or cabin rooms, secluded private cabins or the Magee homestead (situated 5-miles from the main ranch) catering to larger parties of 10-24. 6-nights from £2,549pp (two sharing) including, accommodation, meals, most ranch activities, premium drinks and beverages (including alcohol), taxes and gratuities. Excludes car hire from £249 per week. (4-years +). Departures 24 May to 05 October. Return flight from £799pp.

Rustic luxury is a new travel trend on the ranch scene, and one where guests have the opportunity to experience the rugged cowboy lifestyle without having to rough it. At the Tod Mountain Ranch in British Columbia, the result is the combination of a tailored stay focused on riding, and unadulterated creature comfort indulgence. Taking only 16 guests there is also more flexibility, with options to head off on morning, afternoon or all day rides. The trails are full of fresh challenges, the terrain made up of old logging roads, streams, and cattle trails that extend high into the mountain alpine, and the more adventurous can sign up to be a wrangler for just one day. Stetsons are optional and there’s no reason to dress for dinner, but epicureans can certainly expect more than hearty western fare from the resident chef, the cuisine described as gourmet with a ranch twist. For those who want to enjoy a little Native American flavour Kamloops is only a 45-minute drive from the ranch, the Kamloops PowWow scheduled for 02-04 August 2013. 6-nights from £979pp (two sharing) including, accommodation, meals, most ranch activities, taxes and transfers. Excludes gratuities. (8-years +). Departures 01 May to 02 September. Return flight from £859pp.

The Calgary Stampede may have just celebrated its centennial, but city slickers who choose to travel with Ranch Rider in 2013 will be able to make even more of “The Greatest Outdoor Show On Earth”. The tour operator is running a NEW 11-night escorted tour including, the event and 7-night stay at La Reata in Saskatchewan. From £2,985pp (two sharing) including all accommodation (full board at the ranch), two-day ticket to the Calgary Stampede, ranch activities, taxes, all transfers and internal and return flights. Excludes ranch gratuities. Departing 04 July. The tour operator is also introducing a NEW 11-night escorted tour covering the Las Vegas Rodeo Finals and 7-night stay at the White Stallion Ranch in Arizona. From £2,195pp (two sharing) including, all accommodation (full board at the ranch), one-day ticket to the National Rodeo Finals, ranch activities, taxes, gratuities, all transfers and internal and return flights. Departing 01 December.

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Las Vegas' National Rodeo Finals