Southwest Working Cattle Ranch

New Mexico USA: (WRNM05)

New Mexico USA
Welcome to the Wild West, where Billy The Kid once roamed!

Southeast of Santa Fe lies the ranch in the Pecos River Valley, where in 1541, the Spanish Conquistador Coronado once took camp with his army and where in 1881, Billy the Kid once roamed. The historic Guadalupe County Seat of Puerto De Luna colonized in 1863 directly borders the ranch. The ranch has 8,200 acres and is a cattle ranch. We raise Black Angus cattle and invite you to take part in the life of a Working Cattle Ranch as a Cowgirl/Cowboy. You will enjoy the familial atmosphere, because for all that hard work, there is a lot of fun!
The horses are Quarter Horses, Appaloosas and Paint Horses, that live, accordingly to their natural habitat, in a herd on big pastures. They are all even-tempered and friendly and there is a horse for every rider – from beginner to advanced.

A lot of work is still traditionally done on horseback, e.g. driving cattle from pasture to pasture, controlling/repairing water tanks and fences or checking the health status of the cattle. Twice a year (spring and fall) there are cattle brandings at which friends and neighbors help with a barbeque to follow. Our friendly and always humorous team is happy about any kind of help with the ranch work, but the help is not mandatory!
Every day you may take part in horseback riding. The trail rides in this indescribably beautiful and diverse landscape are a producer of unforgotten memories. Imposing bluffs, deep arroyos and mesas with junipers, mesquite and tumbleweed form a picture like the old Wild-West-Movies. Approximately 24 miles of trails lead to an old cemetery, ruins of long forgotten days and old Native American camps. The Pecos River flows about 5 km through the North of the ranch and the Carizzo Creek with 2 springs runs about 4 km along the Northwest border. You can go swimming or fishing in the Pecos River and a picnic here is always a highlight! 


This is a stationary ride, so all nights are spent in the same location.

The ranch house was built in 2012 with the typical Hacienda style of the Southwest and the adobe architecture of the Native Americans. The impressive living room with high ceiling and vigas, wooden floor, fireplace, and spectacular paintings of dancing Native Americans and buffalos reflect the charm of the Southwest. Two great porches invite you to relax and enjoy the breathtaking view over the Pecos River from the back porch. You can sink into our outdoor hot tub after a long day's ride and let your muscles soak. Of course the house has air conditioning.
The ranch house has 6 guestrooms, all equipped with A/C, private bathroom and free Wi-Fi access. The guest rooms are bright and friendly and furnished in ranch house style. Every guest room has a private bathroom and a wall device for heating/cooling with remote, ceiling fan, alarm clock, and 2 towels per person. Please, note that there is no TV at the ranch, but you are welcome to watch something using our Wi-Fi on your own device.
Laundry is available onsite at no extra cost.

Room Options
-2 shared rooms (sleeps 3-4 people)
-2 rooms with king bed
-2 rooms with two twin beds

Room Occupancy
Triple occupancy is available.
Single supplement is not mandatory if you are willing to share.

All meals are included in this trip.
The meals are hearty and typically American with a touch of German kitchen. Meals are eaten all together usually at the ranch house, served in the cozy dining room with an open kitchen or on the back porch. During day trail rides, we will take lunch (drinks, sandwiches, snacks etc.) in our saddlebags and eat them on the trail. Below you'll find a sample menu of our meals.

Toast, cheese, ham, jam, cereal, milk, orange juice, apples + bananas are served every day + changing warm breakfast, for instance: Eggs, pancakes, waffles, French toast, bacon, sausage, etc.

For riders usually sandwiches, fruit, cereal bars to be eaten out on the trail. A Variety of Tex/Mex Dishes, Casarole, Chili,  Beans, Salads, Burritos, Sandwiches, Fruit, Cookies

Beef/Chicken/Pork with fresh vegetables, rice/potato/pasta sides, fresh salads/lettuce, various dessert
Water, coffee, tea, milk, lemonade & water are included.
The ranch has no liquor license, but guests can bring their own alcoholic beverages. 

Dietary Restrictions
We can cater to some dietary restriction if given prior notice.
At this time the ranch is not able to accommodate gluten-free special diets. Some gluten-free food can be purchased locally (at your own cost) on your way to the ranch after your pick up from the airport or on your way if you are driving in.


Tough, seasoned ranch horses will take you trail riding or rounding up cattle. Learn the cowboy 'fun'damentals of riding. Because the climate in southwestern New Mexico is so mild during any season, they are able to calve year ‘round. This means most of the guests have an opportunity to help with every phase of cattle work, which can include roundups, branding, sorting, weaning, vaccinating, castrating, and pasture movement of the Angus cattle on site and help them preserve as much of the traditional "Old West" as possible.

Riding Level
It is strongly recommended that you are at least a strong beginner. (A "strong beginner" is someone who is comfortable controlling the horse at a walk or trot, is not particularly nervous around the animals and is ambitious to learn more). Some basic riding lessons are available at an hourly rate (extra charge).  If you have a husband or wife who has never ridden but would like to join you, have them do the same or else they are also able to book as a non-rider at a discounted rate!
Concerning the trail rides, we would like to mention, that the terrain is quite challenging, with e.g. steep up- and downhills and little ditches. Our advise: take at least 10 riding lessons before arrival on our ranch, to really be able to enjoy our trail rides and the rising trot makes it easier for you and the horse.
We offer one rider per day for the whole group.

Riding at the Ranch
While there may be times it's necessary due to the particular terrain or trail, they discourage 'nose to tail' riding at the ranch! Here they want horseback riding the way it was intended to be, in country that can only be fully experienced and enjoyed from the back of a good horse. They do ask that you listen to and respect your trail guide at all times, following his/her directions closely. At 5000' elevation and with daytime temperatures ranging from 48 degrees in the winter months to 98+ degrees in warmest summer months, New Mexico's climate makes outdoor horseback adventures possible year round. The Southwest is a magical part of our great country. You'll get as much "hands-on" time as you want! As part of the crew, we invite you to get yer hands dirty. This isn't a "foo-foo" dude ranch. This is ranch life pretty much the way is has always been in New Mexico for over 100 years. It's a lifestyle that is fast disappearing and we work hard to preserve it. The smells, the sounds, the dust in the air, the animals - are all part of the experience. Wake to the melody of birds in the trees, horses anxiously waiting to be fed and the sight of a spectacular sun splashing over Turtle Rock. Dude Ranch?? We don't think so! Enjoy a quiet moment on your porch before helping with morning ranch chores, which can include feeding livestock, pulling saddle horses from pastures, grooming and tacking. While not mandatory, we encourage your help. They are able to keep rates reasonable because of maintaining a small staff - and so they appreciate the extra hands! Approx. 3-5 hours of horseback riding per riding day!
Children 11 years old and younger will not be permitted to ride. All riders 18 years old and younger must wear a helmet.

Weight Limit
The maximum weight is 200 lbs.

Minimum age
The minimum age is 12 years. Everyone 18 and younger must wear a helmet while riding.

Group Size
Maximum of 10 riders.

The Horses
During your visit to the ranch, they will provide you with the opportunity to ride some of the finest western saddle horses available.  Depending on your individual riding skill level, horses will be selected for beginners, intermediate and advanced riders.  Many of the horses can easily accommodate all levels of riders. They "know" what your skill level is and will adjust accordingly. At the ranch, they prefer quarter horse and quarter horse type horses, agile with quiet confidence. You'll find all horses in excellent condition, athletic, tough and willing, each one having their own distinct personality. Regardless of how well you ride, they believe they have a horse for YOU and the staff will make every effort to create the perfect "fit".  And speaking of "fit", if your saddle is uncomfortable or you don't like your assigned horse, please - tell them!  They are happy to make changes.  Try several horses or keep one partner for the week! They'll take care of you, you'll improve your horsemanship and have a lot of fun!


A Day on the Ranch
A regular day at our place starts with a hearty breakfast around 8 am. Afterwards everybody prepares lunch (sandwiches/water/cereal bars/apples) for taking out on the trail in the saddlebags. Then, we catch the horses, groom and saddle them and then head for the arena. You get the chance to get to know your horse and ask any question you might have. From there you'll head out.

We are a small working & cattle ranch so there is only one ride a day, but you'll be in the saddle for about 3 hours every day. Depending on the purpose (trail ride for fun/checking fences/water gaps or cattle) the time varies and could be longer. Our guests are welcome to help gather cattle on horseback in the pasture if needed.

You will be back sometime in the afternoon and you take care of your horse (we assist as much as needed). Then you decide what you want to do. You could learn how to rope the dummy, play the horse shoe game, take a shower and relax, soak your sore muscles in the hot tub, go hiking/fishing/swimming or sit on the back porch, visit with everybody and enjoy the spectacular view over the Pecos Valley...

Some evenings, friends come by and do team roping in our arena every so often and they love to have help to load the cattle. In the evening, around 6 - 7 pm we all have supper together on the back porch. We (team and guests) are "family" and our goal is to make everybody feel at home.

Trail rides in this indescribably beautiful and diverse landscape are a producer of unforgotten memories. Our trails will lead you to old ruins of long forgotten days. For guests looking to do some cattle work at the ranch, it is best to book a date earlier in the year so that it is not too hot. There could be some cattle work at any time of the year, like driving cattle back into the pasture where they belong, after they got through the fence somewhere or gather cattle to be sorted for selling or helping neighbors with their cattle work.

Branding Season
We do our brandings in our peak season April - June and September-October. We brand one pasture every month to enable as much guests as possible to share this experience with us. We start early in the morning and are usually done by early afternoon. Guest can participate with the gathering, but are not allowed in the branding pen because of insurance policy.

Non-Riding Activities Outside of the Ranch
Located in the Guadalupe County or nearby communities there are rodeos, dances, ranch and horse auctions to which we attend upon request. In Santa Rosa (30 min), several lakes invite you to swim and dive. Furthermore there is a nice, little Oldtimer museum and the Blue Hole, a water hole for scuba diving or swimming (unexpected for this desert-like area). You may also enjoy the Santa Rosa Lake & State Park for boating, fishing, swimming and hiking along the provided trails. Along the legendary Route 66 that runs through Santa Rosa, are a lot of restaurants and bars. In Fort Sumner (1 hr) is the grave and museums of Billy the Kid. Also the Bosque Redondo is located in Fort Sumner, a once gruesome prison in which Navajo and Mescalero Apaches have been held under unworthily terms. Another special attraction is Santa Fe (2.5 hrs), the oldest town of USA (1620).

Rates and Dates for Southwest Working Cattle Ranch

Rates include:

Accommodations, All meals, Taxes & All ranch activities (6 riding days)
Some helmets are available to borrow

Packages and Options

  • SeasonYearDescription US$
    20218 day Ranch, AP (high)$1645
    • Daily rate, dbl, pp$235
      Daily rate, single$265
      Triple/Quad occupancy discount, pp($175)
  • B
    20218 day Ranch, AP (low)$1260
    • Daily rate, dbl, pp$180
      Daily rate, single$210
      Triple/Quad occupancy discount, pp($175)
A 15% gratuity on all services is mandatory and is to be paid on arrival.  Sorry, the ranch does not accept credit cards.
% (Tip paid Locally)

* prices are per person based on double/twin occupancy
Gratuity: 15 % (to be paid locally)

Transfer and Other Charges:

2021 Transfer from Albuquerque airport between 10:00am and 9:00pm, return, pp (with min. 7 nights)
- to be paid locally
2021 Single supplement $210
2021 Non-rider rate (for 7 nights) $735
2021 Daily rate, non-rider, dbl, pp $105
2021 Daily rate, non-rider, single $135
2021 Surcharge for short stay (less than 3 nights), pp $20
2021 Daily rate, non-rider in triple/quad room $90
2021 Non-rider rate in triple/quad room (7 nights) $630
2021 Children 12-13 years old -- 25% OFF $0
2021 Children 6-11 years old -- 50% OFF $0
2021 Children 5 years old and younger -- FREE $0

Season Seasons  Min / MaxReserve
A 2021 04/01 - 06/30 8d / 7n 8 day Ranch, AP (high) 2 /12 Reserve
B 2021 07/01 - 08/31 8d / 7n 8 day Ranch, AP (low) 2 /12 Reserve
A 2021 09/01 - 10/31 8d / 7n 8 day Ranch, AP (high) 2 /12 Reserve

Dates Note:

Rates do not include:

Gratuities (15% mandatory - cash only), Off-ranch activities, Alcoholic and soda beverages & Airport transfers


Due to COVID-19 Corona virus pandemic and certain travel restrictions we are applying some temporary policy changes to some of our tours.

For Southwest Working Cattle Ranch (WRNM05):

We plan on reopening on April 1st 2021.

Covid-19 Protocol
- Max. 6 guest at a time (max. 4 guests at a time from different households)
- No entry to our premises or access to our services if you are sick
- Airport transfer (2 persons max. at a time) based on availability only
- Wearing a mask at all times is highly recommended!
- We offer hand sanitizer for free – please use it!
- We try to keep 6 ft distance whenever possible – please do the same!

If you need to cancel your booking, the deposit will not be refunded. Therefore, we recommend taking travel insurance.

If you cancel your booking up to 3 months before arrival, you will be able to transfer the deposit to a later booking, provided we are not fully booked then. The rebooking is valid for 12 months maximum and there will be a rebooking charge of 35 $ per person.

Concerning the COVID-19 situation: If you cannot travel (state regulations) or we are not open at the time of your booking, we offer a voucher for your entire deposit. This voucher allows you to reschedule your trip to the following year (availability provided).

For more information please visit our COVID-19 Updates page at

Other Info
Meeting: Santa Rosa
Airport: Albuquerque International Sunport (ABQ)
Transfer: Albuquerque International Sunport (ABQ)

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Source: NOAA


The abundance of various types of landscape, the clear air with a mostly blue sky and the diverse, colorful rocks give New Mexico its proverbial magic ‘Land of Enchantment’. Because of the southerly location and because it is on the downwind side of the Rocky Mountains, the climate of New Mexico is not humid and in the summer quite hot. In the winter it may get chilly, because of the altitude (the ranch sits at 4,500 feet). 

We bask in 310 days of sunshine, combined with a mild, dry climate and 4 distinct seasons. Very low humidity means that even when temperatures rise, summer is always comfortable, and our sunny winters are comparatively mild. Our average annual rainfall is about 9 inches, and the average relative humidity is only 44 percent. Please be aware that low humidity and abundant sunshine mean visitors need to stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water. Visitors should also use sunblock with a high SPF for skin protection. UV rays are stronger at higher altitudes.

Spring / Summer
New Mexico is synonymous with great weather and the spring and summer seasons are no exception. The high desert climate with very low humidity makes temperatures comfortable, with spring-time average highs around 69 degrees F and average daily lows around 44 degrees F. Summer’s daily highs are around 89 degrees F and lows are around 64 degrees F.

Fall is a special season here in New Mexico. Mornings are cool and pleasant, warmed by the bright sunshine; the cottonwoods turn a beautiful yellow along the Rio Grande; and seasonal growers markets bear fresh fruit and roasted chile. Autumn in New Mexico is often called "Indian Summer" because of warm temperatures early in the season around 70°F/21°C. Summer still lingers in September and early October, with "sweater" weather setting in during November.

What To Bring:
What to Bring
- Sunscreen
- Sunglasses
- Hat (please incl. Stampede String)/ baseball cap (helmet, if under 18)
- Boots for riding (at least ankle high, with heels, preferably no lace-up shoes, NO sneakers for riding)
- Comfortable pants with long legs (preferably riding jeans)
- Longsleve shirts, airy cloth and light color and a light jacket
- Chinks/chaps (if you have some, for protection against cactuses)
- Insect repellent
- Bikini/Bathing Suit/Swimming Trunks (Hot Tub)
- Plug-in adaptor for electronic devices (remember: The voltage in the USA is 110V)
- Electronic device to use our W-LAN (laptop, smartphone, etc.)
- Hairdryer (suitable for 110V)
- Slippers with shoe soles
- Gloves
- Your own riding helmet (we provide helmets also)

Generally you should consider that the ranch is located in 4500 feet elevation and if you suffer from dry mucosa of any kind, you should bring/get products to take care of that.

Please keep in mind, that there is no possibility to buy boots or hats out here. Please contact us in advance, if you want to buy something like that and please consider your arrival time concerning the opening hours of stores in Albuquerque.

Things to Consider
- Tourist visa (if you are not a US-Citizen, you have to have it. Apply online:
- Check your passport (if you are not a US-Citizen, there are some specifications, it has to have)
- Travel health insurance, that is valid for USA
- Be up to date on your tetanus shots (injuries can occur anytime anywhere)
- Check the current regulations for your baggage with your airline
- If you drive out here on your own, use our directions

No GPS will find our address and most cellphones won't have service out here.