Ranches - Live Like a CowboyIndulge your inner-cowboy with a stay at a western guest ranch. Spend your days in the saddle riding wilderness trails, and your nights swapping tales around an open fire.
Learn our western ways driving cattle or herding sheep, then bed down to the sound of a horse’s whinny and realize you’re as far away from your everyday world as you can possibly imagine! There are plenty of ways to live like a cowboy in Wells Gray Country – here are a few suggestions:
Cowboy Up – Stay & Play at a Guest RanchCowboy up with a stay at Wells Gray Guest Ranch or Trophy Mountain Buffalo Ranch, where you can live like a cowboy and play like one too!
Each ranch offers a unique cowboy experience to slip away from your work-a-day world and into the old west. Saddle up for guided wilderness horseback riding expeditions that connect you to a western frontier where big game roam wild, wildflowers bloom, the sky goes on forever and meals are served on a chuck wagon.
A day spent roaming the range will fuel your appetite for dinner round the campfire. Prepare your own BBQ or join up with others gathered around the chuck wagon at Wells Gray Guest Ranch’s Black Horse Saloon for an old-fashioned western dinner.
You may spend your days collecting shots of wildflowers and waterfalls, riding and hiking the trails, but your nights will be spent under a blanket of stars, with nothing more than the sound of crickets and horses lulling you to sleep. You can grab some shut-eye at the ranches’ campsites, rustic bunkhouses luxurious B&B's or old-fashioned log cabins.
Driving Cattle, Herding SheepAveley Ranch, just north of Clearwater, is one of Canada’s oldest and largest working sheep ranches and an ideal spot for a secluded retreat in their heritage log cabins. Reserve their Farm Holiday package and you can live the life of a rancher herding sheep, hiking the alpine, milking cattle or lambing ewes.
Farm activities vary throughout the seasons, but you don’t have to stay at the ranch to participate in the Alpine Sheep Camp tour…simply reserve your spot in advance for an exclusive look at the life of a shepherd on the open range, where awe-inspiring views stretch well beyond the grazing grounds. And if you’re looking for even more hands-on ranching fun you can sign up for a cattle drive at nearby Shook Ranch where moving cattle from pasture to pasture takes horseback riding to a whole new level.
Unplug & ReconnectThere are no cell phone towers at any of the ranches, so when we say you can really unwind here, we mean that quite literally – no cell phones, no TVs and select WIFI spots mean you really can get away from it all while reconnecting with your inner-cowboy or cowgirl !
When to Go
- Spring, summer and fall are great times to make yourself home on the range!
- Many ranches are open during the winter months offering a completely different ranching experience that includes dog-sledding, snowmobiling and cross-country skiing
Need to Know
- Several ranch operations are outfitters too and can arrange horseback rides, dogsled or snowmobiling safaris and cattle drives too
- No experience is required for any of the ranch activities
Top 10 Ranch Experiences
- Paddle the pristine waters Clearwater Lake by canoe
- Round up the herd on a cattle drive
- Live like a ranch hand with Aveley Ranch’s farm holiday stay
- Eat dinner the John Wayne way – from a chuck wagon
- Explore Moul Creek on horseback, then cool off in the spray of Moul Falls
- Learn to Shepherd a herd of sheep, in one of the only spots you can do this in North America
- Two-step, line dance or simply toe-tap to country tunes at the Black Horse Saloon
- Disconnect from your everyday world with no cell-phones, TV or outside distractions
- Just try to count all the stars in the sky