Monday, July 25, 2016

1995 Visit to Lost Valley Ranch

Back in 1995, Doug and I spent a week at Lost Valley Ranch, a dude ranch in Colorado. It was a wonderful get-away. The lodging was luxurious; the meals were fantastic; the staff were fun and very accommodating; and the scenery was amazing.

This is a postcard picture of the ranch. 
One couple among the guests, Joe and Gina, were especially fun. They were from New York City. Gina had never even worn slacks before, let alone ridden a horse. But she oozed personality, and guests and staff alike couldn't help being drawn to her. In the picture below, Gina is the one a little right of center, with the black hair and wearing a flowered blouse.
Guests gathering at the corral for their first morning ride
Everyone watched anxiously as Gina mounted her horse for the first time, erupting in cheers and applause when she was safely aboard. And she went on every ride that was offered that week. I was impressed with her determination.

That handsome cowboy is my hubby. Gina is in the blue, with her back to us.


Relaxing in our cabin

Dining with other guests while Molly, our waitress, looks on. Gina is across the table from me, and her husband, Joe, is the guy with the beard and the purple sweatshirt.

Story time on Helen Rock

Head Wrangler, Brad, was "spinning a yarn" for our entertainment.

Doug shot a video during Brad's outrageous story, but I don't know how to edit that segment out of the longer video, in order to share it on the blog. 

Brad and Phil (the cook) providing some evening entertainment

We had more cowhands than cows on this cattle drive.

Doug and me, taking a break on one of our rides
We had so much fun during our stay at Lost Valley Ranch that we went back again two years later. I'll have to share that adventure on a future post.


  1. What a fun time, it is nice to be around a crowd with all the same interests. I was close to riding yesterday, but couldn't get anyone else motivated. I get down and it takes a while to get land legs back LOL I hope to get out this weekend.Do you still get out at all?

  2. looks like a fun time with a 'resort' feel, too.

  3. I'd be like Gina.... I've only been on a horse once in high school for a VERY short time....

    Looks like so much fun... I think I remember you talking about this in a previous blog some time ago....


  4. What wonderful memories and beautiful pictures. I can understand why you went back.

  5. Looks like a wonderful time. Lovely photos. :)

  6. How nifty! I've never been to a dude ranch so I really enjoyed this post. Love all the photos, especially of you and your husband. :)

  7. I have never been on a horse and to honest,at this point in my life,I have no desire to get on one.It does look like you had fun there and those are some of the best memories.

  8. Steve - It WAS a fun time, for sure. I know what you mean about the land legs. I took a break from my riding lessons for the summer. Just too hot. But I plan to start them up again in September.

    Tex - It was definitely a resort feel...not at all like the "City Slickers" movie. :)

    Betsy - Gina was such a hoot. You couldn't help but like her. I haven't posted about this dude ranch before, but I did post about a couple of dude ranches in Michigan that I attended with girlfriends while I was still single.

    George - It was a blast. We both enjoyed it, and Doug isn't really into horses that much. And the food was outstanding!

    Thank you, Linda. I'd kind of like to do the dude ranch thing again sometime, but Doug's not interested anymore.

    Toni - This was definitely a ranch for dudes. There were other activities for those who didn't want to ride, but I loved the riding part of it.

    Ruth - It did provide us with some lasting memories. Horseback riding isn't for everyone. You have many other activities that you enjoy and that make you the interesting person you are.

  9. It looks like scenes from an American movie to me, Linda. :) Those sceneries are wonderful and the men in the cowboy hats look genuine. Nice to see you and Doug in the photos. What memories!

    1. Most Americans retain a fascination with stories of the Old West, and I think that's at least part of the reason that dude ranches are so popular. We can pretend for a few days, enjoying the fun but none of the hardships.


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