In the movie “City Slickers,” a group of vacationers has a series of adventures while working hard as ranch hands. But those who have been to a real Colorado dude ranch know it’s actually a relaxing way to spend a vacation.
Here are five reasons why a dude ranch is better than “City Slickers”:
1. All the activities without all the planning: At a dude ranch, you just wake up and go. Most of the activities are offered right at the ranch, so everyone can go their own direction without extensive planning or constantly pulling out their wallets.
2. “Away from it all”: Although some guests are nervous at first to find that their cell phones don’t work in the beautiful Colorado mountains, they are soon relieved. Guests can still check in at home from the ranch office.
3. True relaxation: Guests can truly relax from the first day, as they take that initial horseback ride and discover breathtaking scenery. They soon reconnect to each other as they converse over leisurely meals. And they discover the natural world around them again.
“Finding the rhythm of the ranch is what I call it,” says Charles Henry with the Colorado Dude & Guest Ranch Association.
4. Ownership: About the middle of a dude ranch week, guests begin to act like they own the place, which is just fine with ranch owners. They specialize in creating an atmosphere in which the ranch becomes a guest’s second home.
5. The staff: Most vacation spots don’t offer the opportunity to get to know the staff like a dude ranch. The people working at dude ranches eat meals with the guests, sit around the campfire together, and are not considered “the help.” A common comment written in dude ranch guest books is: “The staff was amazing!” Staff members often keep in touch with guests for years to come.