Set in some of the most beautiful scenery in the American West and covered in blankets of snow for months, these dude ranches offer a secluded yet active winter getaway for all ages. Whether for skiing or enjoying seasonal activities like sleigh rides and snowmobiling, these ranches have it all when the weather turns cold.
1. Bar W Guest Ranch – Whitefish, Montana.
The Bar W Guest Ranch in Whitefish gets up to 300 inches of snow every year. The ranch offers terrain for every level of skier, including cross-country, downhill and backcountry skiing. Kids love dog sledding, taking a sleigh ride and ice skating or playing hockey on the ice rink. You can even try ice fishing for trout. End the day with down-home cooking, Montana-style.
2. Western Pleasure Ranch – Sandpoint, Idaho.
A favorite activity of visitors to Western Pleasure Guest Ranch in North Idaho is a scenic horse-drawn sleigh ride by one of the ranch’s draft teams. A two-mile loop trail takes passengers through a forest and offers snow-covered views of the nearby Selkirk Mountains. There’s also snowmobiling and plenty of scenic skiing for all levels.
3. Lone Mountain Ranch – Big Sky, Montana.
Located just six miles from some of the country’s best skiing, Lone Mountain Ranch is a skier’s paradise. Guests can also take a short shuttle ride to explore Yellowstone National Park or Gallatin National Forest by skis or snowshoes. If you’re feeling daring, try out winter fly fishing, too. Cap it all off with a sleigh ride under starlit skies to the North Fork Cabin for a family-style prime rib dinner.
4. Sundance Trail Guest Ranch | Red Feather Lakes, Colorado.
Head out on horseback into winter’s crisp morning air for a ride through Roosevelt National Forest at Sundance Trail Guest Ranch. A small horse ranch with a lodge and cabin suites for accommodations, Sundance Trail even welcomes dogs to join owners during winter months. An outdoor Jacuzzi helps guests stay warm as the snow softly falls.
5. Seven Devils Lodge Guest Ranch – Council, Idaho.
Just south of the Seven Devils mountain range, Seven Devils Lodge Guest Ranch sits on 18,000 acres among canyons, high desert and mountains. A working ranch since the early 1900s, it is one of the most sought after destinations for backcountry snowmobiling (“boondocking”) because of its widely varied terrain, which begins right out the front door.
6. C Lazy U Ranch – Granby, Colorado.
While the ground might be covered in white, count on plentiful sunshine and clear blue skies at C Lazy U Ranch. Take advantage of private skiing with no lift lines, where the snowcat delivers guests back up the hill, or pop the kids on a tube or sled for a wild downhill ride.