Thursday, April 18, 2024

Vista Verde Visitor Ranch: A Colorado Dude Ranch

Is driving horses within the morning, snowshoeing within the afternoon and studying to nation line dance within the night your concept of an excellent time? Then Colorado’s Vista Verde Visitor Ranch is the place you need to be. A brief drive from downtown Steamboat Springs will land you at this all-inclusive luxurious dude ranch the place you’ll be wowed by the actions, meals, lodging and repair.

Vista Verde Ranch is a Luxury Dude & Guest Ranch in Steamboat Springs, Colorado

Vista Verde Ranch is a Luxurious Dude & Visitor Ranch in Steamboat Springs, Colorado

About Vista Verde Visitor Ranch

Vista Verde Visitor Ranch is an all-inclusive luxurious dude ranch that has a dozen fairly cabins, scrumptious cowboy delicacies, over 100 horses, and tons of enjoyable actions whether or not you’re visiting in the summertime or the winter. However, what makes this ranch much more particular is the employees—they’re pleasant, versatile, accommodating and pleasure themselves on going above and past the anticipated. 

Vista Verde Guest Ranch Colorado Cabin

Outside Actions at Vista Verde Ranch

You possibly can take part in two actions a day, one within the morning and one within the afternoon (there are virtually a dozen to select from!). The most effective half is that the majority are included within the all-inclusive worth. 

Throughout completely happy hour and/or dinner the employees will come round to schedule your subsequent day. My advice is to decide on one lively exercise and one which’s slightly extra relaxed otherwise you may be asleep earlier than dinner (and also you positively don’t need to miss dinner!).

Vista Verde Guest Ranch Activity Center

Outside actions range relying on the season and could be something from ice fishing to tubing or flyfishing to mountain climbing. No matter season you go, It’s going to be onerous to squeeze all of them in except you’re right here excellent size of time. 

Listed below are those I did (and beloved!):


One in all my favourite actions was the archery lesson the place we shot at commonplace bulls-eyed targets and foam animals. We got a lesson on learn how to use our bows, arrows and quivers, then tried our hand at hitting the targets. 

Archery in Vista Verde Guest Ranch Colorado

After slightly apply, it was time for some competitors amongst six of the ranch company. I got here in second to final, however was capable of verify “get an archery bulls-eye” off my bucket record!


Snowshoeing could be carried out proper on the property otherwise you could be pushed to an extra location for a special journey. Although there’s a alternative for a guided tour, I opted to snowshoe alone as a result of I didn’t need to bug others with the loopy quantity of pictures I take. 

Horsemanship Lessons

Every day horsemanship lessons can be found for each degree of rider—you may study every little thing from primary strategies to superior driving abilities. I took their starting 101 lesson the place we had been taught learn how to get on and off the horse, plus easy instructions. 

horsemanship class Vista Verde Guest Ranch Colorado

Horseback Path Rides

Sometimes, two occasions per day you may select to go on a horseback path trip across the property (and off-site in some months). My winter trip was a straightforward follow-the-leader kind that offers you fairly views of the encompassing space and a possibility to place a few of your horsemanship classes to make use of. Our group’s trip was about an hour lengthy and the falling snow simply added to the expertise.

Sleigh Rides

A day sleigh trip is the right comply with as much as an adventurous day snowmobiling or cross-country snowboarding. The half hour trip is a tranquil loop that offers you mountaintop views and an awesome perspective of the ranch itself. There’s additionally a Feed Sleigh Journey the place you transport the hay to the steady to feed the horses. 

Annette and Peter on a Sleigh Ride at Vista Verde Guest Ranch Colorado

We additionally occurred to be there on a day the place they had been grooming the horses of their winter coats and after the sleigh trip we bought to assist! 


Snowmobiling was one journey that I used to be most enthusiastic about! You could have the choice to trip tandem or by yourself snowmobile, I opted for the latter of the 2—I wish to be in management.

After a fast lesson we had been off, following our information via the forest. Most elements had been nicely groomed with some bumps, however then we had the chance to mess around with velocity within the powder (my favourite half!). Your complete tour was about 3 hours and by the top I used to be pooped. 

Snowmobiling is among the few optionally available actions that isn’t included within the all-inclusive price of Vista Verde Ranch, however it’s completely value the additional cash! Canine Sledding and downhill snowboarding are a pair others.

Indoor Actions

In-between the scheduled outside actions and within the evenings after dinner, the ranch had loads of different enjoyable issues to do. Some evenings you may play in a pleasant recreation of poker, whereas others had been for whiskey tastings and trivia competitions. You may additionally spend your free afternoons taking a leather-based class or taking part in chess. 

Two of my favourite indoor actions had been the chance to make your personal household model and the music night time. 

Making our Household Model

Utilizing simply the usual branding irons (principally, capital letters & straight strains) we bought to design our household model after which one of many wranglers burned it into a chunk of wooden. It was some of the distinctive souvenirs I’ve ever taken house from a visit!

Music Night time

On the music night time, a enjoyable band setup within the nice room of the lodge and performed after dinner. Throughout the set, the employees took over the ground to do some line dancing. In fact, the company may take part to study a few of their favorites. My husband NEVER dances, however he even bought on the market to study the Boot Scootin’ Boogie.

Meals & Beverage at The Ranch

You’ll little doubt be working up an urge for food with all of the enjoyable actions and one factor is for certain, you’ll not go hungry. And the meals might be scrumptious as a result of the culinary program is top-notch.


Your cabin is stocked with among the greatest snacks I’ve ever seen in an all-inclusive place—Sort bars, Smartfood popcorn and Ghirardelli chocolate (simply to call a number of). In fact there was additionally native Colorado espresso, chilly drinks, a pleasant bottle of wine and a collection of tea.

The lodge additionally has a special kind of freshly baked cookies out on daily basis,—on a regular basis—my favourite was the purple velvet Oreo. 

Vista Verde Guest Ranch Colorado Lodge

Pleased Hour

Each night time from 5:30-6:30 is completely happy hour within the Nice Room, and I went EVERY NIGHT! There have been three decisions of wine that rotated every night time and a collection of beer, plus a snack (like freshly made guacamole with chips or dates filled with whipped blue cheese). 

This time can be an awesome alternative to fulfill and socialize with the opposite company. 


On a regular basis, the eating room had a well-stocked salad bar with all of the staples, plus fancier issues like lentils, quinoa and sun-dried tomatoes. However, that’s not all. Taco Tuesday had choices of 4 totally different tacos (or you may have considered one of every). Wednesday had a Polynesian impressed buffet that had a killer poke bowl, Hawaiian rolls and pulled pork. Thursday had been decisions of muffalleta sandwiches, Cajun Creole pasta or a fried catfish po boy. There’s something for everybody!


Dinner modified nightly, some nights had been a scrumptious western buffet whereas others had been designated as “Formal Nights”. These dinners are a time when the meals is fancier however your apparel doesn’t actually should be. Most had been sporting their most interesting denims and a fairly sweater, some opted for black pants and a shirt. 

On this formal night time, meals are prix fixe with choices like veal chops or bronzino fish, and appetizers of asparagus soup or little gems salad. For dessert a freshly baked cookie topped with vanilla ice cream may be the star.

Even the buffet dinners had been stepped up a notch with choices like broccolini, gigante beans, farro salad and prime rib.


There are a dozen personal cabins on the property. We stayed within the Wapiti, and it was nothing in need of superb. The big main bedroom had a wood-burning hearth, cozy king-sized mattress (with cozy pillows—vital!). There have been two loos and an upstairs loft with three beds. Means an excessive amount of room for the 2 of us, however I wasn’t complaining! 

Vista Verde Guest Ranch Colorado Cabin

On the deck we had our very personal scorching tub that was surrounded by snow. It was excellent to pop into it within the evenings to sooth your sore muscle mass.

Annette enjoying her hot tub outside her cabin on Vista Verde Guest Ranch Colorado

Who Ought to Come to the Ranch?

The easy reply is everybody who likes horses and outside adventures. You would possibly suppose that dude ranches are made only for children, however that’s not the case at Vista Verde. In fact there are many actions for the kids, however simply as many for the adults. 

After I was there, there was every little thing from households with younger children to twenty-something newlyweds on their honeymoon to midlife {couples} like myself to girlfriends on a birthday getaway. It didn’t matter the age, each considered one of us was having a GREAT time!

Finest Time to Go to the Ranch

There’s something for everybody at Vista Verde Visitor Ranch, it doesn’t matter what the season. However, you’ll have to resolve which actions enchantment to you most. Most of the company who had been there within the winter with me had been return company as a result of they loved all of the winter adventures. Whereas, within the hotter months many company come as a result of they ramp up the horse program, with extra path rides and lessons. 

Remember the fact that the ranch closes from the top of March till Memorial Day weekend in Might.

Attending to the Ranch

The best strategy to get to the ranch is to fly into the Steamboat/Hayden Airport (Yampa Valley Regional Airport. It’s a type of tiny airports the place your baggage will come out shortly on one of many handful of carousels.

You possibly can simply verify for one of the best fare offers at Skyscanner, which additionally has the choice to decide on ‘most cost-effective month’ because the departure to search out the bottom priced dates to fly to your vacation spot. 

Preparations must be made beforehand for the Vista Verde Visitor Ranch employees to select you up. It’s about an hour drive from the airport.

It’s time to pack your suitcase and make a visit out to Vista Verde Visitor Ranch. Belief me after I say it is a bucket record worthy expertise you received’t need to miss—from its cozy cabins and scrumptious meals, to the calming horseback rides and classes.

Plus, in case you’re searching for some good ol’ nation enjoyable, there’s loads of actions across the ranch grounds—from archery, fly-fishing in streams and mountain biking trails to nation line dancing! 


This publish might comprise affiliate hyperlinks. In case you make a purchase order via my hyperlinks, I earn a fee that helps to maintain this weblog operating—at no further price to you. For extra info learn my full disclosure.

Extra Issues To Do In Colorado

Colorado’s Canyon of the Ancients Visitor Ranch
Mesa Verde Colorado Bucket Listing: 20 Finest Issues to Do
Silverton Bucket Listing: 10 Issues to Do within the Southern Colorado City
Polaris Slingshot Journey: Driving Colorado’s Million Greenback Freeway
A Colorado Dude Ranch Trip: Drowsy Water Ranch in Grand County

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