Terrell county near Sheffield, TX
“The new wild is where people and nature thrive together.” These eloquent words perfectly express the Chandler family’s philosophy of the ranch. The vision of making their home a place for guests to enjoy natural beauty and, at the same time, taking care of that beauty was always behind the creation of the guest ranch business. Independence Creek runs clear and steady through the West Texas desert, directly in front of Chandler Ranch headquarters and into the limestone cliffs that form the Pecos River. Escape to the clear cool waters that converge on Chandler Ranch and enjoy swimming, fishing, canoeing, kayaking, and exploring.
Hudspeth River Ranch
Val Verde county near Comstock, TX
For thousands of years, people have been drawn to the shade and cool waters of the Devils River. In just a few days at Hudspeth, guests can paddle and swim from pool to pool, stopping for a picnic on the shaded bank. If your stay is timed just right, catch a glimpse of bright orange fall colors from more than just the changing leaves, as thousands of Monarch butterflies stop along their migration route from Canada to central Mexico. Hike to one of several mountain peaks and search for bald and golden eagles above or white-tailed deer, quail, turkey, javelina and aoudad sheep in the canyons below. Mountain bike the 10-mile loop through Cedar Canyon, cool off at one of the shallow river crossings, site in your firearm at the shooting range and end the day with a home-cooked meal at the ranch headquarters.
The Alisal Guest Ranch & Resort
Santa Ynez Valley north of Santa Barbara, CA
A secluded 10,000-acre jewel tucked into California’s famed Santa Ynez Valley, Alisal Guest Ranch & Resort melds the spirit of the Old West with the seductive charms of today’s most relaxing resorts. Drive 30 minutes north of Santa Barbara and you’ll find Alisal Guest Ranch and Resort’s 50 miles of riding trails, 100-acre spring-fed lake, two 18-hole championship golf courses, tennis courts, pool, spa, western-themed accommodations, fine dining, and endless ways to unplug and unwind. Just minutes away from the Ranch are more than 75 renowned vineyards and wineries and the charming Danish village of Solvang. Whether it’s a romantic weekend getaway for two, a family reunion, or a corporate retreat, come discover the magic of Alisal Guest Ranch & Resort. This is far more than just a dude ranch. With a temperate climate year-round and ever-changing seasonal activities, any time of year is the perfect time to visit us.
county near Bagaces, Costa Rica
This Costa Rican family-run cattle ranch is located in the mountains between Miravalles Volcano, Tenorio Volcano, and its extensive National Park. Hacienda Montezuma is entirely off-the-grid, and the water is sourced fresh from the mountain springs. The lake provides a tranquil spot for lazy afternoons, picnics and fishing. For those feeling more active, they can arrange fly fishing in the volcanic rivers, bird watching, trekking, rafting, a visit to the local town, and riding expeditions through pastures & the jungle. The 3700 acre Hacienda is dedicated to raising and breeding Brangus and Brahman cattle, with more than 1300 head. Visitors can join the “sabaneros”, or cowboys, while they herd and work the cattle.
Elephant Mountain Ranch
Private Nueces River Ranch 110 miles west of San Antonio Texas
Elephant Mountain Ranch is part of the Texas Hill Country River Region. With crystal clear rock bottom river beds like the Frio River in Concan and Leakey, TX this Nueces River ranch offers a secluded, private experience. The ranch is named for a baby elephant that escaped from and was returned to a circus traveling through nearby Montell in the early 20th century. Lipan Apache once roamed the Nueces Canyon, Franciscan monks and the U.S. military set up outposts and Charles Lindbergh made an unplanned stop nearby at the turn of the 20th century.
Green Valley Ranch
5 miles west of Glacier National Park
In a 2005 Big Sky Journal article, the author describes the setting of Green Valley Ranch best: “After a short drive off Montana Highway 2, the winding access road opens onto the homestead, where a caretaker’s cabin, guesthouse and main lodge encircle a small pond. In this sheltered meadow, it’s easy to see why the Green family settled here in the early 1900’s. The valley lies in the curve of the Flathead Range with Desert Mountain standing sentinel at 6,000 feet, cradling the collection of buildings protectively. From the hilltop above the lodge a person could look southwest and see right into Glacier National Park.” Green Valley Ranch was originally homesteaded by the George Green family when Glacier Park was newly created. The land was sold in 1947 and operated for fifty years as a dude ranch known as Desert Mountain Lodge. In 1999, the ranch was purchased and restored by the current owners – grandchildren of the original homesteading family. Today, five generations of the Green family ride and ski the logging trails, thin and replant the forest, and are securing the abundance and beauty of the area for future generations. Green Valley Ranch is their family’s treasure and legacy they now share with a select few.
Alladale Wilderness Reserve
Sutherland county near Ardgay, Sutherland
As one of the most remote locations in Scotland, the journey to Alladale is an experience in itself. Driving from Edinburgh, you have the opportunity to see much of Scotland's beauty - rolling hills, pristine rivers, centuries old castles, and if you're lucky, weather that changes by the hour and only enhances the majestic landscape. Once you arrive, you are greeted by an enthusiastic team, led by Stuart and Mandy, eager to ensure your time on the Reserve doesn't disappoint. Alladale’s chef Natasha Buttigieg produces consciously prepared local and organic fare. Their state of the art aquaponic gardens and exterior raised beds produce the vegetables, salads, herbs, and berries. Alladale's ethically culled wild venison is available together with local game if so desired. Regional suppliers offer fresh & wild caught seafood and local trout. Bespoke menus are available upon request. The rugged beauty of Alladale Wilderness Reserve allows for guests to experience the Highlands in its wildest form. Being out there sometimes feels like staying at the edge of the world. This makes spending a few days exploring the Reserve an unforgettable experience. Alladale offers a great range of indoor and outdoor activities for you to enjoy onsite. Ryan is your local guide and expertly navigates his way around the terrain, through the rivers and restored peat bogs, to take you hiking to an ancient forest. Along the way, visit and feed the Highland cows, learn about how they are helping conservation efforts, and stop to visit the Scottish wildcat rewilding program. A trip to the Cairn River is a class in Atlantic Salmon spawning, and its importance to the overall ecosystem. They also offer a variety of interesting day trips to local historic gems. Or go dolphin watching before having a nice local lunch. And what about a visit to a lovely whisky distillery? Alladale is a fantastic base from where to explore a unique part of the Highlands and northern Scotland. You might have been drawn to the lore of the Highlands, but Alladale will capture your heart with its passion, and you'll leave planning your return.