Below you can read some of the comments and memories from some of the folks that have stayed with us over the years.
You can find critical family vacation reviews of our dude ranch at TripAdvisor’s Sundance Trail Guest & Dude Ranch
Online Guest Book
This is our online guest book – much like the one in the parlor.
We would love it if you would add a Family Dude Ranch Vacation or Bed and Breakfast memory or two to this guest book. What do you remember about your Summer Dude Ranch or Bed and Breakfast stay with us? What is your best memory? Tell us your best experiences and memories from your family dude ranch vacation!
Some Memories From Other Guests…
We had a fantastic vacation. We live five minutes from Walt Disneyworld where there are always lines and crowds. I wanted to take my daughter away from the crowds to a beautiful place where she could run free without my having to constantly keep an eye on her. Everyone at the ranch did a superb job with us. This is not a *Have it our way* franchise place. All activities were tailored to our and other guest’s desires. I figured I would be doing kiddie rides with my 6 year old. She got to ride Woody and learn the beginnings of horsemanship while I felt free and safe to ride and do a few things on my own. Kristi made new friends, some that she got to see and visit with a few weeks after we got home to Florida.
We flew to Denver and took the shuttle to Fort Collins and never had to rent a car. Dan and Ellen and their gracious staff provided everything else from stopping at a grocery store for refreshments (Diet Coke) to showing us around the area. I was happy to stay at the ranch the entire time. Oreo was an energetic kind horse that followed direction and was a lot of fun to ride. This was a REAL vacation!
We arrived at Sundance Trail Ranch in Colorado on a Sunday in August. My husband, Robert had won the trip at a live auction TWO years ago and we finally went.
I had intended to just read, sit and maybe work on some small paintings. Brought 4 books even. He was going to fish.
Upon arrival we realized we were in the middle of a ranch specifically geared for those who LOVE to ride…on horses! Being the curmudgeon that I am, I thought…okay, I’ll go on that first ride tomorrow to be polite but that’s IT! I was hearing things about “the 2 hour ride on Tuesday and the 5 hour ride on Wednesday”….uh uh, no thanks, I’d never make it, I’d die on the trail.
Very long, WONDERFUL story made short…..there I was on top of my dear horse (Diamond) on Wednesday ready for that 5 hour ride to the falls for a terrific lunch packed in by horse. The scenery there is spectacular…we’d get a little rain and thunder every afternoon and the meadows were filled with wildflowers…the horses were all perfectly wonderful and we made fast friends with 2 other couples who were there with their kids. ANYway, when we arrived at the falls for lunch (2 1/2 hour ride) it started to POUR. I mean CURtains of rain. And hail. And cracking banging thunder. (Woo! opppiiieee! My favorite ! ) So, there we were high in the Rocky Mtns. (about 15 or so of us, the horses, and 2 dogs). We grabbed our lunches and bright yellow cowboy slickers and ran for cover…under huge boulders and into the trees. Poor Hot Shot (dog) was all in a lather from the thunder and trembling till the earth trembled with him. It was great fun. When there was a bit of a break, the guides figured we’d better get out while we could, so we mounted up and set off back across the meadows, and up over the craggy peaks. It was POURING. I had, thank GOD, bought myself a cowboy hat at the start of the trip and it saved me. I was all hunched over in my rain slicker, and the water was cascading down off the front of my hat. ( What wonderful inventions these cowboy hats! ) We’d pull into trees for cover when the cracking-banging got worse, and I would squeegee my horses neck with my hand to try to keep him a bit dryer. It was the best experience of my life really. !
Our bunch had one trail guide at the front, (Rocky Hadar Bob), with no slicker cuz he gave it to Robert, singing all the oldies he could think of. (I think he did it to either distract himself from being cold and wet, or to give us all the impression that he wasn’t worried at all) The guide at the back of us (Josh) didn’t find all this singing amusing,and kept hollering to quit singin and git movin!.
I couldda stayed out there a week. We did get back safely in time for dinner and the evening’s entertainment – a couple came over from a neighboring ranch to sing OLD cowboy songs, play the guitar and fiddle. It was terrific.
I’ve never had a better vacation. The ranch is so well run, the staff is excellent (college kids working there for summer) food great, new friends made, and experiences I will never forget. We learned to groom, saddle, cinch, mount, ride, coax, and love our horses.
We trotted, loped and sometimes galloped along beautiful trails. (Precise instruction included for those who may have been a bit rusty at all this…) And I learned to let new opportunities sweep me up and carry me off once in a while.
I’m going back………soon.
Our girl scout troop has been anticipating our camping weekend at Magic Sky for over a year. The girls, all 4th graders, have been begging to go horseback riding since second grade. We had a great day riding in the snow and learning hands on about tack and grooming. Thank you to Dan and the wranglers for a wonderful experience and we hope to see you next year!
What I remember most about the sundance trail dude ranch was when I was on Trigger on ou way back from lunch and we were letting the horses get some water and little did I know that Trigger was quite the water lover so he starts splashing and I knew that right then and there that I was done for. Two good dips in the water and I was Soaked to my knees,luckily my camera was just inches from soakilyhood (thats a word right?). Everyone spoke about It From Then on.
Another memory I was so grateful to experience was getting to meet the two very special housekeepers. One was so greatly generous as to give me her fathers hat and felt better that I had it in my possession than it just sat on a shelf catching dust and for that I thank you, thank you, thank you Marlene(hopefully I Spelt That Right). The Other housekeeper….ahh what can I say other than without her this whole vacation,this whole happening,this whole experience would not have been the same. Someone to laugh (either truly or through pity-in that case thanx anyway) at my jokes. Someone whom never knew of such a thing as a bad hair/outfit day. Someone to lean on (just kidding). Someone of great motivation. Someone who I could never get tired of being around or listening to. And Someone who I only hope to see again next year. The other housekeeper by which I mean is Janie. I thank you from the bottom of my heart and may we cross paths again.
This past Christmas we wanted to give our daughters a nontraditional present that they would remember for their life time. So we decided on a trip to a dude ranch for a week as their present. As a family, we researched dude ranches and found that Sundance Trails had everything we were looking for in a vacation. Between December and June, the girls’ excitement about the vacation built and we began to worry a bit about their high expectations for the week.
From the minute we arrived at the ranch, saw the horses grazing gracefully in the pine-tree-lined meadow and were greeted by Jack and Hotshot (the dogs), the four kittens, and the wranglers, we knew that we had nothing to worry about.
Our 10 year old daughter enjoyed her week playing with the kittens, riding her horse Cheyenne, joking around with the wranglers and sitting on the porch reading her book. Her favorite memory was watching wranglers Jim and Josh ride the stick pony around the barrels at the rodeo games.
Our 7 year old daughter enjoyed the evening hikes, rock climbing, white water river rafting, feeding the chickens, bunnies and goats, and riding her horse, Fudge. We hardly saw our usually clingy daughter the whole week as she was having so much fun playing with the other children at the ranch and spending time with the kid’s wrangler, Sarah. She also thought the evening campfire was pretty cool when she got to play the wash board and is still singing “Grandma’s Feather Bed.”
Darryl’s favorite memories include not only shooting the 50 caliber black powder gun, but watching “the wife” lunge backwards when shooting it. He also enjoyed trying his hand at skeet shooting. He will also remember the help his horse, Clyde, tried to give him with the video camera ? peering through the screen to watch what he was taping and trying to move him around to the “perfect” angle.
Tana enjoyed the gorgeous views from the mountain trail rides and was surprised to learn that she liked white water rafting. She also loved the home cooked meals ? especially the yummy brownies ? and not having to worry about cleaning up afterwards. Her favorite memory was getting the family’s best time during the barrel racing at the rodeo the last day. (Even if she and Cherokee cheated a little by only going right around the barrels).
As parents, the memory that will linger the longest for us is when both girls thanked us for taking them on the trip and told us that they’d like to get a trip to Sundance for their Christmas present again next year.
Thanks Ellen and Dan for an action-packed, yet relaxing vacation we will always remember and cherish.
All of us are in agreement that this was the absolute best family vacation we have ever had, and we are thrilled to have come during “Dog Week,” as well as Jay’s birthday week. Ha! Great new friends, beautiful scenery, wonderful horses all added up to a wonderful family vacation.
We were planning to go to DisneyWorld next year for Nick’s 10th birthday, but he refuses to entertain the idea any longer, as he only wants to return to Sundance Trail to be with Bucky, except he wants to stay 2 weeks, instead of just one.
Thank you all for a most unforgettable family experience! We are blessed to enjoy an annual family vacation, and the memories we have from Sundance will be treasured by all of us.
Love to all, especially Thomas, Clyde, Bucky & Doc!
It is Monday & back at work !!!!!
Ten years I had waited for this type of vacation & it was over in a flash & it met my every expectation. Ian is still going on about those bloomin bears !!!! say a big HI to Rocky, Jim & we are missing Peter’s cooking already !!!!!
We have already received some photos from Laurie & that disc was brilliant. We can’t thank you or express enough what a great time we had & we are trying to work out when we can come again. I know it wont be the same with the great company we shared with all that were there but I am sure yourself & Dan would still make it very enjoyable.
I hope Jim gave Artimis a good rest & can you get him to give her a huge pat from me & I am looking forward to seeing the photos when she has her foal.
Missing Colorado already
I want to say this was one of the best vacations I have ever had. Thank you for such a fulfilling and memorable week on your beautiful ranch.
I miss the ranch, the morning rides, the hikes, the views, the rest when you wanted it, the incredible food but most of all your staff. Rocky, Alijosh, Pete, Andy, Jim and especially you Ellen.
Thanks for taking such good care of us.
I will never forget riding my horse Sage and seeing all the beautiful countryside on horseback, the picnic lunches while riding, Lynn’s unscheduled dismount from Fudge, the abundant, healthy, home cooked meals, fabulous deserts, the delicious coffee, the goats getting into the parlor, the goats sitting on the backs of the donkeys, the 3 beautiful kittens which helped all of us from missing our own cats, the Western poetry night with roasted marshmallows, Rocky’s jamming session with us on our last night and just so many laughs and good times. We were all so well taken care of.
You have a very special place that I know we will all be coming back to. I am planning on coming back next year.
Thank you for the memories.
It’s been several years since we visited your ranch. Since then we have gone to other ranches, and although we’ve enjoyed each of these, Yours is the BEST!
If you can remember the first time we came out, I was quite afraid to get on one of those four legged beasts you call horses, and insisted on Woody. Within just a few days not only was I comfortable riding this gentle horse, but came back the following year to continue our first adventure. Your staff makes all the difference. The other ranches we’ve been to don’t seem to care as much about the safety of their clients or the horses. And you do a much better job of screening your help to make it enjoyable for everybody.
And the food, yours beat the others hands down!!! And you gave the adults a night to themselves by taking all the kids out for the sleepover….that was a wonderful feature.
Miss your ranch, and I hope we can come back in the next year or so.
We had a wonderful time!! The snow was an added surprise!!
We’ve decided that Sundance will become our annual spring break vacation.
It’s a pleasure to finally see people living their dreams!!
Tell Leo hello from Jeremy.