21 Jan Gallop to Your Next Vacation — Make it a Dude Ranch
That and more is what you will experience at a Dude Ranch.
Dude ranching is much more than guest rooms and horses. It is a sharing of the spirit of the West and the beauty of the wilderness. On a ranch, you’ll experience a world that is dictated by the seasons and cycles of life. It is a simple way of life that demands honesty, integrity, hard work, and a strong spirit.
Your appreciation of nature, family, and friends will be renewed. You’ll find that good riding, good food, and good friends will leave you peaceful and content. You’ll discover the luxuries of silence, the wind on your face, and the stars shining brightly.
More than just a day full of activities, the essence of a ranch vacation nourishes your heart and soul. It is unlike any vacation you’ve ever taken—one that you will return to time and again. It‘s “Horses, Hats, History, Honesty, Heart, and Hospitality” and friends serving friends.
Bar W Guest Ranch
The Bar W is a year-round dude ranch located in Whitefish, Montana. The dude ranch season is May through October, when 6 night and 3 night all-inclusive package stays are offered. The 6-night itinerary runs Sunday through Saturday and is a well-rounded representation of the Western lifestyle. Specialty weeks are geared towards adults and are offered in the spring and fall. Specialty weeks include; a women’s only week “Cowgirl Up”, “Adults Only Week”, “Photography Week” and “Cattle Drive Weeks”.
Nestled at the base of Spencer Mountain, between two pine-cover ridges, there are over three thousand beautiful acres available for horseback riding and outdoor activities. The Bar W Guest Ranch sits at 3,200 ft elevation, is just 3.5 miles from downtown Whitefish, named one of the “Top Ten Cool Towns” by Frommer’s Budget Travel, and less than 30 miles from Glacier National Park, “The Crown of the Continent.”
As a member of the National Dude Ranchers’ Association and the Montana Dude Ranchers’ Association, the ranch strives to provide guests with an authentic dude ranch experience. Vacation packages begin with the proper pairing of each guest to a well-trained Bar W ranch horse, followed by a morning horsemanship lesson. Emphasis is always placed on the safety of guests and the welfare of the horses.
Guests can saddle up and enjoy thousands of acres of Montana wilderness on horseback or enjoy the array of arena activities including barrel racing, pole pending, cow sorting, roping, and team penning. By the end of the week, the cheers of new friends will surround each guest as they compete at the Bar W Guest Rodeo.
Along with the beautiful weather, Montana summers bring a variety of outdoor activities around the ranch and the surrounding area. The fishing is as good as the sunsets, catching large trout and Pike both on the Bar W trout pond and Spencer Lake.
Take the family for a leisurely cruise around the lake on a row boat or canoe, jump in for a refreshing swim, hike miles of trails, enjoy a relaxing afternoon of birding and lawn games, or explore the unspoiled nature of Montana on Bar W mountain bikes.
Follow the expert wranglers to the play meadow for skeet shooting or archery or take the afternoon to whitewater raft down the Middle Fork of the Flathead River with Glacier Raft Company (rafting is an additional charge, but we provide transportation for you!).
After a long day of activities, unwind in the hot tub or sit back, relax and let Montana surround you. Your day doesn’t have to be over when the horses are fed and put out for the night. Enjoy an evening wagon ride, cowboy singing, campfires, cookout dinners, western dancing, and even experience the excitement of the local rodeo when scheduled. Guests are invited to participate in all of our activities but are always welcome to sit back, relax, and soak in the fresh air.
The main lodge is 6,200 square feet with six bedrooms, three common spaces, and a game parlor to entertain guests for hours. Designed by the Amish, the cabin consists of two suites overlooking the south pasture and a forest full of wildlife.
Sleeping up to sixteen, the cabins are great for groups and families looking for true western hospitality. Bar W Glamping, or glamorous camping, provide guests with an unparalleled cowboy vacation. Guests will experience the best of both worlds – feeling a part of nature while staying in an elegant setting with the comforts of home. The Bar W is ready to treat you with true western Montana hospitality – from the moment you arrive until long after the sun sets.