What exactly is an all-inclusive Guest Ranch experience?
I can’t tell you how many times I was asked that question. As an MBA student, I had chosen to do my summer internship in Wyoming at Vee Bar Guest Ranch – learning what it takes to run and operate such an establishment. I was interested in learning more about experiential hospitality. All my research had led me to know that the dude ranch experience at Vee Bar was the right type of internship for me .
I’ve always been a bit of a cowgirl at heart even despite living in urban areas throughout my life. When you’ve got that gypsy in you, there’s always a part of you that wonders what it would be like to gallop full out on the back of a horse on the plains of Wyoming or wake up to the sound of the river rushing and birds singing instead of the garbage truck coming or horns honking. The guests who come here, and to other guest ranches like Vee Bar, have that same kind of gypsy in them.
Vee Bar Guest Ranch is so good at what they do that they have a high percentage of returning guests year after year. I often take calls from guests who are booking trips a year or two out. What is the special experience that this Wyoming treasure is providing?
PICTURE THIS: Guests arrive at Vee Bar on a Sunday late afternoon for a 6-night-stay; located 30 minutes west of Laramie, WY. Dinner is at 6. Three delicious, hot meals a day are provided. Monday morning is the orientation horseback ride. Each guest has been assigned a horse based on a questionnaire they filled out prior to arrival. They spend the whole week with that horse, bonding and learning how to communicate with each other. By the end of day one, even beginners are loping on their horse (***but only if they want to! The wranglers will go at your own pace***). This dude ranch is not a nose-to-tail establishment. Guests are expected to learn how to truly ride their horse, and they rise to the occasion with the help of capable, friendly wranglers. By mid-week, guests feel comfortable enough to explore mountain trails, herd cattle at neighboring ranches, or perhaps lope at a moment’s notice once Tommy, our 83-year-old true WY cowboy wrangler decides walking isn’t going to cut it.
If the hot meals, horseback riding, and picturesque lodging and scenery don’t make you fall in love with this place, the hot tub, private fishing, trap shooting, river tubing, archery, wagon rides, ranch animals, hiking tours, live music, campfires, friendly staff, and additional perks will!
This is a journal entry from one of the first days on my internship here at Vee Bar Guest Ranch:
Trained in the office today, got off at 4. Since I live on the ranch, my commute is terrible, LOL. I’m going to get so fat here if I’m not careful: fed us ribeye and salmon last night. Sirloin and shrimp tonight. I’ve decided running daily is necessary. They have 800 acres. So I just picked a dirt trail and ran. Pixie, the ranch dog decided to run with me. Fluffiest, cutest companion ever. The trail ran through the 80 head of horses they have. So naturally I had to stop and pet some occasionally. I’m told there’s live music tonight in our saloon. If this is what my entire summer is going to be like, I think I chose the right internship!
What exactly is an all-inclusive Guest Ranch experience? It’s a chance to pay tribute to our Western Cowboy heritage. It’s a chance to unplug and connect with family & friends – both new and old. It’s a chance to be still, re-group, re-center, and enjoy the things that matter most. We invite you to come to Vee Bar and see for yourself. Guest Ranch season happens annually June – August.
Happy Trail! – Jess