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Lowdown

  • Established

    1978. Guest ranch since 1979
  • Owner

    The Stranahan Family
  • Manager

    Brooks Bradbury, General Manager
  • Tel

    970.879.1780
  • Nightly Rates (per adult)

    Summer: $1,014 - $1,290
    Winter: $725 - $885
  • Minimum Stay

    Summer: 1 week
    Winter: 2 days
  • Maximum Guests

    45
  • Works with travel agents?

    Yes
  • Great For

    Romance, Action & adventure, Peace & quiet, Pampering, Solitude, Diverse scenery
  • Memberships

    Relais & Chateaux, Orvis, Dude Ranchers Association, Colorado Dude Ranchers Association

Nestled along the western continental divide, where the Elk River flows from the Sawtooth Range, you will find The Home Ranch, Colorado's only Relais & Chateaux-affilitated guest ranch.

This stunning family-friendly summer vacation paradise offers year-round multi-sport adventures, legendary , Orvis-endorsed fly fishing and picture perfect Colorado winter vacations made in sparkling powder heaven.

If you’re looking for an extraordinary vacation from the stresses and strains of modern life, and a charming place to repair and replenish your body and soul, you’re sure to find it at The Home Ranch.

Good time to go

The ranch is open year-round, so take your pick of any of the gorgeous Colorado seasons; bright, fresh Springtime, beautiful Summer days, golden Fall and crisp, snowy Winters.

Children at the Ranch

Great for children aged 6 and over

The all-inclusive children’s program and dedicated kids counselors offer a wide menu of daily activities and adventure for kids and teens, making it very easy for the whole family to unwind, relax and do what each individual wants, when they want, how they want to do it.

The counselors are available to keep your children occupied and entertained every day of the week, from 8:30 in the morning until 9:00 at night.

Everyone in your family gets their very own horse for the week plus all of your food, lodging, local transportation, fishing gear, kids counselors, guide service, wranglers and endless on-ranch activities and adventures are included in the price of your stay.

During the summertime, The Home Ranch swimming pool is a popular place for our younger guests.

The Home Ranch accepts reservations from families with children ages 6 and up.

Arts & Crafts

coloring, sketching

Activities

hiking, biking, picnics, outdoor play area, cookouts, campouts, whitewater rafting, supervised swimming

Games

scavenger/treasure hunts, board games, horseshoes, soccer, volleyball, badminton, ping pong, pool table

Riding based activities

animal care, horse care, arena riding, trail riding

Baby Sitting

From age 6 to 12. Hourly cost $25.

Baby Sitting Provided By

Home Ranch Staff Members

Ranch History

The Home Ranch was founded in 1978 by Ann and Steve Stranahan, and Ken and Sharon Jones. The families decided to join forces and start their own ranch, wanting to offer other families the unique experience of a high quality Western ranch vacation.

In early 1978, they found an old homestead for sale just north of Steamboat Springs, in a little settlement named Clark. This ranch had everything they had dreamed of for their new venture: 580 acres in the breathtaking Elk River Valley, one of the last Alpine ranching valleys in the American West.

In this wonderful location, they began to build The Home Ranch, modeling the lodge and cabins after the old homesteads still found in the valley. The first guests came for Christmas in 1979. More cabins and lodge rooms were added over the years, and the original 570 acres has grown to 4000 acres available to The Home Ranch guests.

Since its inception, The Home Ranch has been distinguished by the beauty of its setting, its singular charm and style, its gifted and hospitable staff and some amazing food. The quality of the guest experience, it's memorable and challenging activities in both winter and summer, is now legendary. Since 1986, their affiliation with Relais & Chateaux has extended its reach and reputation.

The Home Ranch is now welcoming its second generation of guests, young men and women who want their families to experience the charming traditions, camaraderie and accomplishments that they first experienced as children at The Home Ranch, and still cherish today.

Lowdown

  • Enjoy

    Gourmet, Ranch-style, Health oriented
  • Meals served

    family style, buffet style, everyone eats together, children dine separately, scheduled meals
  • Alcohol

    available for purchase
  • Enjoy dining in

    nature settings, patio, dining room (casual attire)
  • You'll definitely love

    ranch-raised beef, ranch-raised pork, ranch-raised chicken, farm fresh eggs, ranch garden, organic produce, locally grown produce, fresh daily bread, fresh daily desserts
  • Dietary restrictions catered for

    lactose intolerant, vegans, vegetarians, other

Throughout its history, The Home Ranch has built a reputation on providing guests with exceptional cuisine and a complete cellar stocked with very special wines to complement each meal.

The farm-to-table approach provides Home Ranch-raised organic ingredients, including the ranch’s own Sand Mountain Cattle beef, pork and poultry along with all of the produce, herbs and flowers our greenhouse and raised bed gardens can produce in a season.

In the winter season guests enjoy cracking fires, cozy rooms and dining at two common tables in the dining room. During the summer, guests enjoy the common dining room and al fresco venues on the ranch property including the Farm Kitchen, and Campfire Cookout.

They cater to special dietary considerations and preferences.

Your Chef, Jonathon Gillespie

Executive Chef Jonathon Gillespie

Born and raised in Burlington, Vermont, Jonathon acquired his first job as a dishwasher at 15. He has not had a job outside of a kitchen since. After cooking his way through business school in North Carolina, it was clear that had found his true calling, no suits and ties for this guy. The logical path was attending the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY. Upon graduating in 1994, he returned to North Carolina to run the hot line at the local Hilton.

Then in 1997, Jonathon was looking through the Culinary Institute of American job listings and found the listing: “From Coors to fine Cabernets, Mobil 4 Star guest ranch is seeking Sous Chef….” The job was for our neighboring Vista Verde Guest Ranch, a dude ranch here in Clark, and after meeting with the owner he was hired as the Executive Chef.

Now, seven years after leaving Steamboat he has returned, this time with a wife and two young sons richer, to lead the kitchen here at The Home Ranch.

Lowdown

  • Address

    54880 County Road
    129 Clark
    Colorado
    80428
    USA
  • Remote Location

    Yes
  • Elevation

    7200 ft
  • Private Land

    1000-5000 acres
  • Public Land

    more than 50k

Nearest Town - Steamboat Springs

Steamboat Springs has a population of 12,435 (approx), and is situated 18 miles / 30 mins from the Ranch.

Facilities in Steamboat Springs include: grocery store, pharmacy, church, school, post office, medical clinic, hospital, bank, atm, gas station, museum.

For shopping Steamboat Springs offers: small hometown necessity shops, boutique shops, western wear.

Ranch shuttle

FREE

Rental car

Required, 4x4 recommended

Nearest Airports

Hayden (HDN), Clark, Colorado

Distance

50 miles / 45 mins

Airlines

Delta, United, Alaska, American

Ranch shuttle

FREE

Rental car

4x4 recommended


Denver (DEN), Denver, Colorado

Airlines

Delta, United, Skywest, Allegiant, Horizon, Northwest, Alaska, United Express

Rental car

Required, 4x4 recommended


Private Air Travel

Nearest location(s)

Steamboat Springs

Travel by

Helicopter, Airplane

Distance

18 miles

Ranch shuttle

FREE

Lowdown

  • Type of Riding

    Western Riding
  • Riding opportunities for

    Beginner, Intermediate, Experienced
  • Most riders are

    Intermediate
  • Rides are grouped by

    Age, Ability, Pace of Ride, Rides tailored to guest requests, Families ride together
  • Max riders per ride

    6
  • Wranglers per ride

    1
  • Pace of ride

    Walk, Trot, Lope
  • Guest Horses

    75
  • Horse Types

    Quarterhorse, Appaloosas, Draft, Draft Cross, Paints, Tennessee Walkers, Other, Geldings, Mares
  • Hours in the saddle

    Morning - 2 hours
    Afternoon - 2 hours

The Setting

Private Land (1000-5000 acres)

4,000 Acres

Public Land (more than 50k acres)

1 Million acres of public land adjacent to The Home Ranch in the Routt National Forest and Zirkel Wilderness


Our Riding

Program rides

Cattle herding, competition, lessons

Riding Freedom

Must stay with Wrangler.

Good to know

Minimum age of 6 years old, and able to handle their horse independently.

Weight limit for riding

225-250 lbs

Riding considerations

no riding experience needed, We recommend a good level of physical fitness, We consider height and athletic ability as well as a guest's weight

Hours in the saddle

We offer all day rides which may be 3-5 hours.


Why our riding stands out

  • Individualized attention, small rides catered to individual preference
  • High quality orientation and instruction (Your own horse for the week.)
  • Endless terrain in a pristine Rocky Mountain setting

Sample Riding Itinerary

Day 1‬
9:30-11:30am:
Horse orientation for all guests, including outline of riding program, horse and trail safety, basic horsemanship, introduction to horse for the week with ground work, arena riding and a short trail ride‬
2-3:45pm: Trail ride to the Greenville Mines with four other riders of similar riding ability. Aspens and pines, with views back toward Sand and Round Mountains, a few short trots with instruction. Home in time for a massage‬

Day 2‬
9:15-11am: Lesson/ride with three other guests. Start in the arena to develop better control and practice trotting and learning to lope, then out for a ride through the aspens to utilize what you have learned
1:45-3:30pm: Mellow loping with three other guests and a short climb up through the timber to the Whitmer Ridge Overlook; amazing views‬

Day 3 
10am-2pm: Load into the Home Ranch van with eight other guests for a 10-minute drive across the valley to the Murphy Larson Ranch where you meet up with the horses and two wranglers. Ride across hay meadows and up through the aspens to Pete’s Cabin, where you’ll see a herd of Elk. Eat lunch while gazing at Continental Divide before taking a different trail back down the mountain

Day 4‬
9am-4pm: Leave a little early with four other guests and lunch packed in your saddle bags. Ride up Canoe Gulch and lope across Rock Creek Meadows on the way back to Little Joe’s Lunch Spot overlooking Big Creek Canyon and The Mt. Zirkel Wilderness. After lunch, head back down the Narnia Trail in time to meet up with four other guests and their wrangler. Gather the ranch cattle from their pasture in preparation for the weekly cattle competition on Friday morning‬

Day 5‬
9:30-11:30am: The Cattle Competition: Join 11 other guests in the arena for a quick lesson in cowology. Then divide in to teams for sorting and penning games, capped off by learning how to barrel race
2-3:30pm: Cheer on the kids as they compete in their own cattle competition and horse games

Day 6‬
9:15-11:30am: Lope up through aspens until the trail gets too steep, on a family ride up Home Mt. Look down on the Ranch from 1,000ft ,with 360 degree views of the Elk River Valley and Continental Divide
2-3.45pm: One last exhilarating loping ride though open meadows and aspen groves down to Round Mountain and back. Amazing what a difference a week can make!
 

 

 

 

 

Riding Lessons

Details

lessons come with package, basic riding lessons, advanced horsemanship lessons

Given by

wrangler, horse trainer, ranch owner or manager

Location

on the trail, in the arena

Natural Horsemanship Clinic

Clinician

Curt Pate, Tammy Pate

Details

Clinics occur yearly, Included in package, Clinics occur in the arena, Clinics occur on the trail

Focuses on

Natural horsemanship and stockmanship.

Cattle work - pasture gathers

Occasional work with larger groups of cattle on neighboring cattle operations. Check for availability.

When

Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct

Frequency

Weekly

No. of yearlings

10

No. of cow/calf pairs

10

Interaction

Guests participate

Branding work

When

Jun, Jul

Frequency

Yearly

No. of Branding

14

Interaction

Guests watch, Guests participate

Arena Work

Variety of cattle work during weekly cattle competition

Type

indoor arena, outdoor arena

Activities

penning, sorting, roping from the ground, barrels, pole bending, gymkhana

Lowdown

  • Nightly Rates (per adult)

    Summer: $1,014 - $1,290
    Winter: $725 - $885
  • Minimum Stay

    Summer: 1 week
    Winter: 2 days
  • Preferred Arrival Day

    Sun
  • Preferred Departure Day

    Sun

The Home Ranch can cater for up to 45 guests. Accommodation includes Cabins, Houses and Lodges. See below for details and indicative rates.

Cabin | Roo

Rates (Per Couple)

Summer: $1,122
Winter: $885

Minimum Stay

No minimum

Description

Studio cabin with sleeping loft - ideal for a couple or a family of 3 or 4 Charming and whimsical Roo, named after the sweet little character from “Winnie The Pooh”, is a cozy studio cabin with a queen bed, a wonderful sleeping loft with a twin bed, and another twin bed in the alcove. It includes a small seating area, a wood stove, a writing desk and its own jacuzzi on the deck. Roo is an ideal cabin for a couple or a family of three or four. Roo has the advantage of being the closest cabin to the lodge and is always stocked with homemade

Rooms

1

Bathrooms

Private bathroom

Amenities

safe, fridge, crib, hair dryer, seating area, plush bathrobes, wood fireplace

Entertainment

hot tub

Cabin | Kanga

Rates (Per Couple)

Summer: $1,198
Winter: $885

Minimum Stay

No minimum

Description

1 Bedroom Cabin - Just Right For A Couple or a Family of 3 or 4 Kanga is a cozy one-bedroom cabin nestled in the trees overlooking the horse pasture, with a living room and a lovely loft. The bedroom has an ample king bed and a woodstove. The loft has two twin beds, perfect for kids & friends. The living room has two loveseats, an antique dry sink, an armoire and a writing desk. The little desk – modeled after a Molesworth original – is one of Ann Stranahan’s favorite pieces of furniture at the ranch. It makes the perfect little home for a f

Rooms

1

Bathrooms

Private bathroom

Amenities

safe, fridge, crib, hair dryer, seating area, plush bathrobes, wood fireplace

Entertainment

hot tub

Cabin | Birdhouse

Rates (Per Couple)

Summer: $1,122
Winter: $885

Minimum Stay

No minimum

Description

Studio Cabin with Views, Perfect for a Couple or Family of 3 or 4 Birdhouse is a well-appointed, cozy and complete guest cabin. The fireplace in the corner is wonderfully romantic. It is a studio cabin surrounded by aspens, with a great view of the horses. It features a queen bed, a snug sitting area, a sleeping alcove with a writing desk and twin bed, and a very special loft with its own twin bed. The alcove configuration makes it work well for a single parent and child, or two adult friends. The loft is highly prized by children of all age

Rooms

1

Bathrooms

Private bathroom

Amenities

safe, fridge, crib, hair dryer, seating area, plush bathrobes, wood fireplace

Entertainment

hot tub

Cabin | Whistler

Rates (Per Couple)

Summer: $1,198
Winter: $885

Minimum Stay

No minimum

Description

Wonderful for a couple or family of 4 Whistler is a one-bedroom cabin in the aspens,with a living room that looks out over the horses and the pasture. It features a big bedroom with a king-size bed, and a cozy living room with two couches that everyone loves. Whistler is the farthest cabin from the Lodge, so it is much loved by those who want privacy amid the aspens and a long walk after dinner.

Rooms

1

Bathrooms

Private bathroom

Amenities

safe, fridge, crib, hair dryer, seating area, plush bathrobes, wood fireplace

Entertainment

hot tub

Cabin | Sundown

Rates (Per Couple)

Summer: $1,290
Winter: $885

Minimum Stay

No minimum

Description

Happily Accommodates up to a family of 5 Lovely little Sundown sits by itself on the edge of the meadow, looking west towards Sand Mountain, with spectacular views of sunsets across the valley; hence its name. It has one-bedroom with a queen and a twin bed, a living room, and a loft with two twin beds. Sundown was recently remodeled to allow more space in its living room – and also offers a very comfortable sofa bed, if the need arises. It has true treasures on its walls: six fine portraits of Native American chiefs. Part of the famed McK

Rooms

1

Bathrooms

Private bathroom

Amenities

safe, fridge, crib, hair dryer, seating area, plush bathrobes, wood fireplace

Entertainment

hot tub

Cabin | Compromise

Rates (Per Couple)

Summer: $1,290
Winter: $885

Minimum Stay

No minimum

Description

Cheerfully Houses up to a Family of 5 Although it’s the prettiest little cabin, tucked deep amid the Aspens and easy on the eyes, guests always roll their eyes when we tell them they are going to be in Compromise. The name came about because the founders of The Home Ranch, Steve and Ann Stranahan, couldn’t agree on where to place the cabin: Steve wanted it in the aspen grove; Ann wanted it in the meadow. So they compromised. Comp has its share of inquisitive wildlife. Don’t be surprised if a deer stops by to visit when you are in the ho

Rooms

1

Bathrooms

Private bathroom

Amenities

safe, fridge, crib, hair dryer, seating area, plush bathrobes, wood fireplace

Entertainment

hot tub

Cabin | Bunkhouse

Rates (Per Person)

Summer: $2,384
Winter: $1,675

Minimum Stay

No minimum

Description

Accommodates Up to a Family of 6 You smile when you walk into the charming Bunkhouse. Its painted headboards poke loving fun at the cowboy culture and the bedspreads in Bunk have always been a cherry bandana red. “Bunk” is a grand, high-ceilinged Western cabin with two full bedrooms and two baths, separated by a spacious and comfortable living room. The south bedroom has two queen beds; the north bedroom has a queen bed and, of course, a bunkbed. We made a promise to one of our earliest and most loyal guest families to leave the spirit and l

Rooms

2

Bathrooms

Private bathroom

Amenities

safe, fridge, crib, hair dryer, seating area, plush bathrobes, wood fireplace

Entertainment

hot tub

House | Columbine

Rates (Per Person)

Summer: $3,598
Winter: $2,385

Minimum Stay

No minimum

Description

Columbine is our Dowager Countess: tall, imposing, impeccably turned out. It has handsome Arts and Crafts tiles and paneling, and a staircase copied from Stickley’s own. The ceilings are high, the proportions ample. It is a house, not a cabin. There are breathtaking views of Sand Mountain from the upstairs front bedroom and from the big wraparound porch. Our largest and most luxurious cabin features a spacious living room with a stone fireplace and three bedrooms, each with its own bath. The master bedroom downstairs has a king bed and th

Rooms

3

Bathrooms

Private bathroom

Amenities

safe, fridge, crib, hair dryer, seating area, plush bathrobes, wood fireplace

Entertainment

hot tub

Lodge | Lodge Rooms

Rates (Per Couple)

Summer: $1,014 - $1,290
Winter: $725 - $885

Minimum Stay

No minimum

Description

First Floor Lodge Room, close to Common Living Room, Dining Room, Gift Shop

Rooms

6

Bathrooms

Private bathroom

Amenities

safe, fridge, crib, hair dryer, seating area, plush bathrobes, washer / dryer

Entertainment

hot tub


Booking Policy

Week-long stays only in Summer and for Holidays. Two-night minimum in Winter season.

Included in your stay

meals, activities, ranch shuttle, Riding, Beer, wine, spirits, massage therapy, third party outfitters, some off-property activities

Extras

Gratuity

Solely at the discretion of the guest, to be shared among all staff.

Other

15% Ranch Fee

Lowdown

  • You can borrow

    Cowboy boots, Riding helmets, Saddle bags
  • Communications

    Wireless Internet/Wifi.
  • Cell Networks

    verizon.

Onsite

Outdoor Activities

climbing, mountain biking, Yoga

Water based Activities

outdoor pool, hot tub, whitewater rafting-adventure

Spa

relaxation massage, deep tissue massage

Winter Activities

cross-country skiing, down hill skiing, snowshoeing


Fishing & Wildlife

Fishing on offer

fly, river, stocked pond, equipment available, guided inclusive, unguided, instruction available

Additional Services

Corporate Retreats

For groups of 30-40. We will work with groups to provide memorable meetings, retreats and gatherings. Full property buyout based on availability.

Weddings

We can cater for groups of 40-50. Wedding planner available. Please contact Selina Heintz, Guest Services Manager for more information. 970.879.1780 or Selina@homeranch.com


Our comments

Highs

  • Open year-round, you can enjoy the best of every season in stunning Colorado
  • As Colorado's only Relais & Chateaux-affiliated guest ranch, you are guaranteed an excellent hospitality and culinary experience
  • There are myriad activities on offer, from yoga, to Nordic skiing, horse riding, fly-fishing, cycling, rock climbing and more!
  • The charming cabins are thoughtfully located and lovingly furnished with original items. Cozy, rustic yet luxurious cabins, they're perfect for couples, groups or families

Lows

  • Located in the beautiful mountains of Clark at 7,200ft, you may like to take a little time to acclimatise to the high altitudes
  • Your phone may or may not work depending on your provider: Verizon has good service. AT&T's service is improving but may have some issues. Sprint and T-Mobile do not work, currently

Visitor Reviews

Dont just take our word for it, see what visitors like you say...

Serene ,beautiful

Beautiful outdoor surroundings..relaxing and invigorating all at the same time. Their Welcome Home sign is just what it is... Friendly welcoming staff , treated amazingly by all , the other guests were just as friendly . Many other guest are returning guest for years. Truly a retreat .. The meals were so fun , a real experience all their own ! We had The Bunkhouse cabin, very relaxing and comfy ! Ski,snowshoe, sled ride to feed the livestock,horseback, so many activities or just chill and read a good book.

5 stars

You can find more reviews for The Home Ranch on TripAdvisor