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Bighorn Mountain Ranch Hideout


Itinerary for Bighorn Mountain Ranch Hideout




With close to 650,000 acres to explore you will seldom ride the same trail twice or feel crowded. The terrain in which we ride ranges from mountain tops to meadows, alpine forests to Sedona-like red rock country, high deserts to mountain creeks and lakes.
This is is not a 'nose to tail' riding experience, but safety is the number one concern. On your vacation, rides are diverse and customized according to riding skills and riding activity of the group.

We offer our guests a variety of riding options each day, for all riding levels:
- Advanced riders will find hundreds of thousands of acres to ride, on great horses with experienced and knowledgeable cowboys, wranglers and guides.
- Beginner riders will find patient teachers and instructors who enjoy sharing their love and passion for riding.



Trail Rides
Rides are subject to change depending on weather, location and difficulty of terrain.

High Desert and Canyons in the Shell Valley Rides:
Ranging in elevation from 4,200 – 5,400 feet, these rides are mostly in the valley riding through the wide-open prairies, juniper trees, and rocky hidden canyons. In the hidden canyons, refreshing creeks flow with century old cottonwood trees offering you and your horse well-deserved shade.

Mountain Pastures & Alpine Meadows Rides:
You will see a variety of terrain above 7,500 feet riding through sage brush and high grasses imagining you are one of the cowboys in the movie Open Range or Lonesome Dove.

High Mountain Alpine Country Rides:
Elevations in these high-altitude areas range from 8,500 to 13,200 feet. The High country offers alpine forests, mountain lakes, streams and granite rock formations. Area’s above 8,000 feet are usually snow covered from the end of September to mid-June depending on weather conditions

Devil’s Leap Ride:
This ride features undulating red clay hills capped by wild grasses, sage and cactus. This intermediate ride culminates in a breathtaking vista from atop the famed Devil’s Leap, which drops 800 feet beneath you. Dare to take a look over the edge…

White Creek & Trapper Creek Canyon Rides:
Step back in time 100 years. Your ride winds through a picturesque tree canopied path, past old timber corrals, over a wooden bridge and opens into a wide-open lane perfect for an easy lope. These trails are half-day rides and they let you snake through the canyons with several crossings of White and Trapper Creeks.

Willet Lake Ride:
A breathtaking high-altitude full-day day ride in The Big Horn National Forest which takes you through open alpine meadows and pine forests to a picturesque mountain lake surrounded by a gorgeous alpine meadow. This is a ride you will not want to miss.

Copman’s Tomb Ride:
This spectacular rock which you can see every day from the lodge, is one of the most popular rides for its million-dollar view and scenic picnic. Looking up from the valley you would never think you could make it there on horseback. On a clear day you can look from the top of Copman’s Tomb across the Big Horn Basin to other ranges of the Rockies and Yellowstone National Park.

The Painted Hills Ride:
This half-day ride wanders among mounds the Indians called The Painted Hills, which are hills wwith beautiful colors due to the vibrant, ancient minerals mixed with Bentonite. We reach these hills riding through the sage brush and grass prairies in the valley.

The Sedona Ride:
This area near Trapper Creek Ranch, offers a ride which feels like you are in the red desert of Arizona due to the red, exposed Chugwater formations and half-desert prairies – cactus, coyotes and rattle snakes included.

The Five Fingers Ride:
This popular and thrilling valley ride takes you through rocky canyons with juniper trees and high desert while traveling along the slopes of the Big Horn Mountains, which rise 2,000 feet along your trail as a huge granite wall. Some of the exposed Precambrian rock is over a billion years old

McCullough Peak Mustang Country:
During fall, winter and spring some of our cattle graze in a 100,000-acre pasture which is a high desert area shared with the McCullough Peak Mustangs. When riding through this country, you will probably be able to see wild horses grazing alongside antelope.



Cattle Work
When it comes to working cattle on the range guests should realize that all farm and ranch work is unpredictable and hard to plan. We are dealing with live animals, unpredictable and changing weather patterns and other organizations.
The art of working cattle is called stockmanship. When working cattle, we embrace the principles of low stress stockmanship using the methods of Bud Williams, Curt Pate and other stockmanship experts. As with good horsemanship, it is all about pressure and release. To teach these principles we keep a small herd of yearlings at the ranch or nearby for our guests to enjoy and learn the basics of stockmanship. The reasons we have yearlings available at the ranch is for our guests to work during weeks there is little or no cattle work on the range, or the cattle work is too challenging.
A fun day is learning the techniques of moving cattle in the arena and then riding out to gather cattle, driving them through the creek, uphill, through the woods and into the arena.
After this, guests can enjoy team penning, sorting and other “cattle games” on horseback. This is an ideal controlled setting to practice. Many guests prefer practicing cattle work with our small herd compared to the work on the range.
On the contrary to what most people think, cattle drives are done slowly and gently instead of “yahooing” and pushing the herd hard. On some occasions one will need to push the cattle herd (example going up a steep slope), however most of the time “slow is fast and fast is slow”.
Depending on the kind of terrain, duration of the rides and riding distance, cattle work can be enjoyed by all levels of riders. The novice rider might help keep the herd together while the other guests ride out with the wranglers to round up cattle and drive them towards the main herd. More advanced guests may go with wranglers to sort off neighbor’s cattle, get strays out of the timber or ride ahead to see if fences are open or closed.

Ranch work varies with the season. Our cattle work schedule is as follows.

Branding (April to May)
Cattle, cowboys, horses, and branding have been the foundations of ranching since the frontier days of long ago. A rancher's brand is his mark and his identity. Branding is not only a Western tradition, but an indelible and legal form of identification, necessary to prevent livestock rustling in such big country. Imagine a sea of cows, dust covered cowboys discernible only by their colorful neck silks blowing in the breeze, a well muscled horse wheeling and spinning helps his rider throw the perfect loop, thin veils of dust that seem to come alive beneath the hooves of bawling cows and calves. The smells of sweat and sage and the magical sounds of branding that make one proud to live a life on the range. If you long for a traditional, hands-on cowboy branding experience, then this is your season.

Cattle Drives into the Mountains (late May to June)
After the snow has melted, we herd yearlings and younger cows up into the mountains, so if you like cattle drives this is a good time for you to come. The mountains are covered with beautiful colors of spring flowers.

Gathering and Sorting Cattle (July)
Early July is the time of year we move our older cows and their calves from the high desert in the basin to our high mountain pastures. We gather and sort cow/calf pairs by the truckload. Sorting cattle on open range is an art form. Then the cattle make the 40-mile trip up the mountain via Flitner Ranch semi-trucks. Upon arrival, the cows and calves need to be paired back up and herded in bunches by horseback to various alpine meadows.

High Mountain and National Forest Cattle Work (July to mid September)
Upon arrival, the cows and calves need to be paired back up and herded from horseback to their summer grazing meadows. This is one of the prettiest times to visit. Your travels will take you from high desert prairies surrounded by the beauty of the painted hills, up jagged trails cached between pinon pine and shale slides, through wide open mountain meadows and nestle you amid bowers of high pine forests. It is quite common to view an amazing variety of wildlife including elk, deer and moose. Spontaneous fishing breaks have been known to occur on the mountain.

Autumn Roundup & Indian Summer (mid September to October)
Enjoy the crisp fall mornings, marvel at the brilliant rainbow of colors as the aspen trees change from green to gold and of course prepare to bring cattle down the mountain. You will have plenty of opportunities to see elks and other wildlife, as they come down from the high country.


Winter Season  (November to March)
The ranch also opens for selective winter weeks.
Even during the winter, the ranch is blessed with a dry climate and clear blue skies - we don’t usually get much snow in the high desert of Shell Valley, Wyoming.
The riding days are shorter but what is more peaceful than reading a book or playing games in front of the open fire?
You can also take part in winter activities at the Snowshoe Lodge. Snowshoe Lodge is located near snowshoe pass and boasts over 400 miles of groomed snowmobile trails, but it’s the miles of fresh powder and un-groomed trails that really thrill the snowmobile enthusiasts.


Riding Lessons
We always have wranglers on staff who can give riding lessons in very small groups and if possible, individually. They will work with you in the arena and will start by explaining how a horse thinks, reacts and perceives things.
We make a difference between “understanding the horse” and “the technical ability to ride a horse”.
Understanding the basics of horsemanship will make you feel more comfortable being on and around the horse. This will enhance the learning environment and riding experience. It also makes it much more fun.


Mustang Rides
During Spring and Fall we regularly ride in the McCullough Peaks Herd Management Area where the McCullough Peaks Mustangs roam. During this ride for intermediate and experienced riders, it is always a treat when these curious and beautiful Mustangs circle our riders to satisfy their curiosity about the horses we are riding. Following BLM rules, we always stay at least 500 feet away from the wild horse herd.



Non-Riding Activities
With all the terrain to explore on private lands, BLM, The Big Horn National Forest and Cloud Peak Wilderness, The ranch is an adventure all on its own.
We offer an array of non-riding adventures such as fly-fishing with an expert guide, trapshooting (with .12 and .20 gauge Beretta shotguns), archery, attending The Cody Nite Rodeo (in season), hiking/biking, 4×4 tours, as well as ranch and farm visits.
In 2018 we added a lovely 60' x 18' heated lap pool. What is more refreshing after a long day in the saddle than swimming and relaxing with a stunning view of the Bighorn Mountains.
Some activities and the pool are weather permitting.

Fly Fishing  (April - October)
We fish over 10 miles of streams, creeks and lakes having access to approximately 650,000 acres in a variety of eco-systems. Our professional fishing guide can teach you how to tie a fly and the techniques of fly-fishing. Our program is fun for all, including beginning and intermediate fly-fishers. Don’t worry about waders, tack or flies. We have you covered.
One of our most popular activities is our Ride & Fish Program where we ride on horseback to a pristine mountain stream to go fishing.
All are included in your stay. The only thing you will need to buy is a daily fishing permit. We fish for Brown, Rainbow, Cutthroat and Brook Trout.

Activities (weather permitting)

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Trail Riding for all levels

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Riding Initiation/Lessons

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Natural Horsemanship Initiation

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Natural Horsemanship Clinic

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Cattle Work & Cattle Drives

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Stockmanship Initiation

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Fly Fishing & Initiation**

 

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Trap Shooting/Archery

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Hiking/Mountain Biking

 

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Lap Pool

 

 

 

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4x4 Scenic Tour

 

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Privately Guided Fly-Fishing***

 

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Cody Nite Rodeo

 

 

 

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Buffalo Bill Center of the West

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Snowmobiling

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Corporate Retreats & Meetings

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included in the package pricing

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available but not included in package pricing

** limited to 3 guests/guide

*** one to one tours can be booked ahead of time

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Bighorn Mountain Ranch Hideout
Tour Code: GRWY01
7 days / 6 nights ~$3,350.00
Dates : March to October

Trip Rating :
Difficulty : Riding Level
Riding Level Explained
ABeginner
Beginner A rider who has limited experience, is unable to post the trot and does not canter.
BNovice
Novice A rider who is capable of mounting and dismounting unassisted, capable of applying basic aids, comfortable and in control at the walk, moderate length posting trots, and short canters.
CIntermediate
Intermediate A rider who has a firm seat, is confident and in control at all paces (including posting trots, two point canters and gallops), but does not ride regularly.
D Strong Intermediate
Strong Intermediate An intermediate rider who is currently riding regularly and is comfortable in the saddle for at least 6 hours per day.
EAdvanced
All of the above, plus an independent seat, soft hands, and capable of handlinga spirited horse in open country.
Lodging: Standard
Lodging Level Explained
   
= Facilities in lodges, estancias, haciendas, resorts, etc.
   
Basic lodging - some with shared bathroom facilities, usually no AC or room service.
Regular standard room - usually with private bath.
 Accommodations with superior comforts.
   
 = Trips with nights in tent camps. Sometimes the first and last night are in hotels.
   
Basic tent camping - everyone helps out with camp chores.
Regular standard with some camp amenities and camp cook.
Camping facilities with superior comforts like camp shower, bathroom facility..
   
 = Trips that combine nights in hotels and camping.
   
Basic accommodation and basic camping facilities can be expected.
Regular standard with some nicer amenities.
Only assigned to hotel and camping facilities with superior comforts.

Online Reservation


Season Seasons  Min / MaxReserve
C 2021 03/28 - 05/31 7d / 6n 7 day Ranch, AP (Spring) 4 /8 Reserve
G 2021 03/28 - 05/31 5d / 4n 5 day Ranch, AP (Spring) 4 /8 Reserve
J 2021 03/28 - 05/31 14d / 13n 14 day Ranch, AP (Spring) 4 /8 Reserve
A 2021 06/06 - 09/12 7d / 6n 7 day Ranch, AP (Summer) 4 /8 Sold Out
H 2021 06/06 - 09/12 14d / 13n 14 day Ranch, AP (Summer) 4 /8 Sold Out
B 2021 09/19 - 10/30 7d / 6n 7 day Ranch, AP (Fall) 4 /8 Sold Out
F 2021 09/19 - 10/30 5d / 4n 5 day Ranch, AP (Fall) 4 /8 Sold Out
I 2021 09/19 - 10/30 14d / 13n 14 day Ranch, AP (Fall) 4 /8 Sold Out
Introduction
Day to Day Itinerary
Rates | Dates
Accommodation
Tack: Western
Horses: Quarter Horses and cross, Mustangs, Ar...
Pace: All paces - from easy to very challeng...

Airport: Cody
Location on Google Map
Image Gallery
Image Slide Show
Customer Trip Rating
Climate
What To Bring
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