by Amanda Norcross
Bar W Guest Ranch offers the perfect Western vacation for all ages. Located on Spencer Lake, 3,000 acres of mountains, foothills and open prairies welcome horseback riders. Guests will also enjoy horsemanship clinics, barrel racing, egg races and pole bending in the hotel’s indoor and outdoor arenas. Cowpoke lessons for beginners are offered, and for the more experienced cowboys and cowgirls, advanced lessons include roping, team penning and sorting cattle. Additionally, Bar W guests are encouraged to explore the entire property. Watch the trainers work the horses, fish for pike on Spencer Lake, hike the trails, mountain bike, swim in the lake, throw horseshoes, or play badminton and volleyball. You can even test your archery skills or try your hand at breaking some clay pigeons.
The hotel offers six spacious guestrooms in its main lodge, two cabin suites, and “glamping” tents, glamourous tents on wooden platforms. All guests enjoy a hearty breakfast and dinner daily, and though you’ll feel like you’re miles away from civilization, the hotel is just over 3 miles from the town of Whitefish, where you’ll find an array of shopping, dining, theater and nightlife options.
Our Editor Loves
- Horseback riding
- All-inclusive rates
- Outdoor activities for all ages
- All Inclusive Rates
- Horse Back Riding
- Water Sports
- Children Programs
- Connecting Rooms
- Family Room 5+
- Game Room
- Kids' Theme Meals
- Meal Plan
- Onsite Dining
by Megan F
We truly cannot express what an incredible week it was staying at the Bar W as a family of 13! There was something for everyone, and by the end of the week we felt like we were right at home. My children flourished! They could not wait to jump out of bed in the morning and tend the horses. Their confidence grew, their relationships with new friends and family thrived, their love of the horses amazed us and the awe on their faces at the breathtaking setting was contagious. We have been pouring over our pictures and videos ever since and hope to return one day! The 7200+ miles we drove this summer to make this trip possible was worth every hour in the car, and we'd repeat it in a heartbeat!
by S R
We were overwhelming impressed by the staff, facilities, culture, and especially the horses and other animals at the Bar W Guest Ranch during our week-long immersion in the world of the wrangler! Everyone on the staff truly works to help make the Bar W your home.
Even as a beginner horseman, the week starts at your pace and culminates in a real-world cattle-drive and guest rodeo experience. The wrangler to guest ratio ensures as close to personal attention as one can get. The patience, guidance, insight and encouragement of the wranglers is invaluable. Its an awesome experience to learn what you can do with the right coaching.
There is more to the cowboy/girl life than horses, such as fly-fishing fundamentals, skeet shooting, archery, square dancing, wagon rides – and we enjoyed all of it! The lodge house has a game room in the walkout basement with a TV and pool table, and there is a jacuzzi. As much as we wanted to enjoy these amenities we enjoyed riding horses, doing other activities, visiting with other guests or just enjoying some down-time and taking in the beautiful and restful surroundings more.
We opted for the “glamping accommodations” which were superb and completed our experience. Three delicious family-style meals are prepared in the lodge daily. It’s hard to put into words the fun we had sharing meals with other guests and wranglers, telling stories, learning new things, and making plans.
Getting into town or taking a side trip to Glacier National Park is easy to do, but there’s nothing like driving under the sign welcoming you to the Bar W and leaving the rest of the world behind.
We plan to go back again and hope to meet up with many of the friends we made on this trip.