I have few monetary resources, so this was a stretch for me. However, I turned 70 and wanted to get my two daughters and their families together with me for a memorable, fun experience. One family likes Disneyland and Vegas, the other likes roughing it. This was the ... more perfect compromise, though NO ONE felt compromised at all!
We are not horseback riders...but we all had great times on horses and those who were a bit intimidated were very reassured by careful tips and great wranglers! We got to know our horses over the week...they were carefully chosen for us. Even my six yr old granddaughter was galloping (briefly) by the end of the week...and she could write to her horse afterward! One of us stopped riding after the first day, but had a great time hanging out, building dams in the stream with his son, etc. There is a great museum nearby, and at the place, swimming pool, hot tub, farm animals, hiking, etc if one doesn't want to ride the whole week.
The white water rafting day was fantastic...we almost didn't go because it was a long (5 hr on the raft) trip, but the kids loved it, the raft guide we had was funny and fun and very competent, etc.
At the ranch, each child had kids of their age group to hang out with, and the program for kids was fantastic! I was worried about not enough "family" time because of all the kids' activities, but we arranged for family rides, family group for whitewater rafting, etc. And it worked out much better than the kids feeling they had to spend all their time with us. They could roam around the grounds...like the olden days when kids were free without worries about safety! They just checked in occasionally with great enthusiasm for the next event! And the parents loved it also.
It rained a lot and was quite cold while we were there, but the place was ready for that with switches to indoor things, different rides, etc. as needed, all fun!
As they said, don't expect to lie back and do nothing, since there are activities all day and into the evenings every evening. I missed one evening, but regretted it! Dancing for all ages, singing old songs, a staff show that was great.
Rides that, even for newbies, went to spectacular views. Staff that were incredibly energetic, helpful, unceasingly cheerful. This is no doubt thanks to the owners/directors of the ranch and their family. They not only work as hard as their staff, but also they feel like family and work hard to make that happen. They are also very civic minded...for example, they take in horses that have been mistreated, etc. but don't really tout that.
I was afraid that at least someone in my family would not have a good time...but everyone loved it, and a couple of family members said it was the best vacation they'd ever had. Also...the other families were all fantastic...friendly without being intrusive; helpful; fun; interesting. One daughter and husband got to know a couple they will communicate with in the future. There are many families who have come to this ranch for several years; I wish I had the money to arrange that for my family. So we will remember this adventure with great pleasure. It was the perfect place for us!
I forgot to mention accommodations and food. We had two cabins, not luxurious but very clean, very comfortable, nice porches to hang out on for the few minutes of leisure every day. The food was down-home...huge huge meals, breakfasts that could kill you if you ate all the options; lunches and dinners that were very good, substantial, lots of veggies and salads as well as meat and potatoes, etc. Kids fishing pond resulted in a fish caught by my grandson; the kitchen cooked it for him and he shared with us...delicious! And he was so proud of himself!
Can't say enough good things about this wonderful place. It is NOT too expensive for what you get! I just don't have the money to redo the experience, or I'd be back every year, like so many seem to do!
Date of Stay: 07/27/2014
Children in Party: 3
Kids Play Area
Pool & Water Fun
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