Why is it called a dude ranch? In the late 1800s and early 1900s, the word “dude” had a different slang meaning. Back then, “dude” meant something like "city slicker" – and the cowboys and cattle ranchers did not express it in a good way.
As the country expanded westward the ranches that opened to the burgeoning tourism business were called “dude ranches” or by the kinder, gentler term “guest ranches.”
The following will give you a taste, and I plan to post regularly about what there is to do worldwide and year-round at various dude ranches. I’d love to hear where you’ve been.
Click the PDF to read an article I wrote in 2018 for Arabian Horse Life magazine's issue 6, about vacationing on dude ranches, in US or Canadian National Parks, and international horseback riding vacations.
These three are fine dude ranch vacation examples to whet your appetite for what's available in Wyoming.
Here's a fun fact: Wyoming is nicknamed "The Equality State" because it was the first state to give women the right to vote, which it did as a territory in 1869.
- Bitterroot Ranch
- Red Reflet Guest Ranch
- The Hide Out Lodge & Guest Ranch welcomes solo women riders
Looking for a horseback riding adventure a bit further afield? How about Arabian horseback riding on the African continent in Namibia at the Okapuka Horse Safaris?
Active Riding Trips is another well-vetted horseback riding organization that is well worth your time and treasure.
Two of my favorite, solid resources for information on ranch vacations are Gene Kilgore’s Ranch Vacations and EquiTours.