In this feature with our partner Fred.\ Discover, we explore the chance to fulfil any childhood dreams you had of being a cowboy (or girl)…
If you grew up watching films like ‘The Good, the Bad and the Ugly’ and ‘Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid’ the chances are that you imagined being a cowboy at some point. Even if you weren’t a fan of these spaghetti westerns, you may still have experienced a fascination with the Wild West and a desire to live the relaxed ranch life.
Well, the good news is that you no longer need to imagine because there is the opportunity to see what life is like on a real, working ranch and to live as a cowboy for a few days. The American term ‘dude ranch’ was coined to describe a ranch that has opened its door to tourists so that they can spend their holiday taking part in activities like cattle driving, horse riding and shooting. A relaxing retreat that allows families (no children however) and groups of friends to discover a life they would otherwise know little about, ranch holidays like this have become very popular. At the end of the experience, people often feel much closer to each other as a result of these team-building activities.
Cowboys in Colorado
One ranch in particular, run by the Colorado Cattle Company, is situated on the Colorado border with Nebraska, about 150 miles from Denver, and was the filming location for the 1991 film ‘City Slickers’. In the film, three friends who are immersed in city life make the decision to join a cattle drive in order to try and learn more about themselves and find some sort of purpose in life. Your stay at this guest ranch needn’t be as enlightening, but it is still a great way to learn something new about yourself and those close to you.
You may think that spending seven days working on a cattle ranch doesn’t sound like much of a holiday. However, there are many luxuries onsite to ensure that it is not all work and no play. As well taking part in activities such as fishing, volleyball, shooting practice and building campfires, there is a pool and a hot tub in which to soothe those aching limbs. Massages are also available to help you really unwind during your break. And that’s without even mentioning the chance to simply sit on the porch and admire the beauty of your remote surroundings.
The Perfect Balance
Dude ranches like this manage to strike the perfect balance between modern life and the traditional aspects a cowboy’s existence. Authenticity comes in the form of log cabins, cook outs with homemade food (included in the price) and even a dinner bell that tells you when it’s time to dig in. On the other hand, Wi-Fi, a full service bar and cosy bedding ensure that those modern comforts are never too far away. Whether you are relaxing in the lounge area or showing some camaraderie during a group activity, there is plenty of time to make new friends and share old stories.
If you like the idea of living the cowboy life, our friends at Fred.\ Discover offer week-long ranch holidays at the Colorado Cattle Company. They’re perfect for anyone looking for something different and a great choice for any city slickers wanting to escape the daily grind.