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It is with heavy hearts that we share the news that our dear friend Joe Ontiveros (Little Joe) has passed on. Little Joe was a wrangler for the ranch for a number of years in the late '90s. We have begun to gather stories of his time here at the ranch to pass on to his family. Please pass on stories and pictures of how Little Joe touched your life in comments section of this blog or send them to firstname.lastname@example.org. Little Joe passed on peacefully while walking down a seldom used path in a park near his home in Arizona. This day he specifically told his beloved Elaine that he would be going for a " long walk." He knew it would be his last and Elaine sensed it as well. His heart just stopped "out on the trail." Only fitting that he died when being with Nature. He loved everyday here [...]
As I write this the snow is still falling on the Elk River Valley - reminder that the winters here are long and deep with snow. Guests had the opportunity to experience a wonderland filled with enjoyment and snowy activity like nowhere else. We’ve captured the essence of this on a just released Winter Video. Check it out! This winter we hosted the inaugural Home Ranch Round-Up Nordic Race. It was a grueling 45K skate across our meadows and over hills deemed to be the most challenging race in the country. The elite racers loved it. We did offer a 15K and 7K for the more sane skiers. Due to its success and feedback from participants, the Round-Up will be an annual event in March, which will grow and attract racers from across the country. The event made for a fun and exciting weekend for our guests. Along with Easter also came the [...]
As a ski guide at The Home Ranch, there are 3 essentials. 1- The obvious is the ability to get around on any type of ski. 2- Then there is the obsession with the shoveling of immense amounts of snow. 3- But the most important trait is the possession of one good story. It is hard to compete with Lizzie and her tales of 150 days on the Pacific Crest Trail. Then there is ‘Captain’ Mike and his encyclopedia of knowledge on birds and Alaska. Mark of course can tell you everything there is to know about the North Routt backcountry, the Zirkels and every trail no matter the season. So, as the rookie guide this year, I was pretty intimidated and needed a good story. And that is how this race, The Home Ranch Round-Up came to be. It started as a story and the one I would tell [...]
Saint Patrick’s Day weekend at The Home Ranch is looking extra special this year. Renowned Celtic Fiddler Jessie Burns has toured the world sharing her passion for the Traditional Irish Music, but The Home Ranch has a special place in her heart. Back in the 90’s while she was the program director for Strings on the Mountain in Steamboat Springs she moonlighted as a member of our very own Ranch Hand Band. She is thrilled about the opportunity to share the Ranch with her family. Who could know the former fiddle player for the Irish-American super group Gaelic Storm also loves a good Cowboy Campfire? Jessie Burns, a native of England, lived in Steamboat for five years as her introduction to life in Colorado. She fondly remembers weekly performances with the Ranch Hand String Band at The Home Ranch for many of those memorable years. She has an Irish father [...]
Last week, the ranch hosted a group of friends that have been coming to enjoy the beauty of the ranch and camaraderie for 13 years. One night at cocktails the following poem was read. It was created in the early hours of the morning. The writer, Ted Donnelly, was inspired by a number of Robert Frost quotes and poems he had recently read. I was so inspired by the words, that I wanted to share them with others. Enjoy, Selina Stopping by Home Ranch on a Day in Winter With apologies to Robert Frost Whose bright white trails I think I know He lives afar from subzero He will not mind my gliding skis Tracing lines upon his snow My gluteus now lives in fear That I will land upon my rear My legs are wobbly, spirits quake But Home Ranch dinner quells my fear Dixie gives the bells a [...]
Here are the results for the race this weekend! Thank you to everyone that came out and joined us for our inaugural event!
You are probably asking yourself, 'what is a 3 wire winter?' And no, you can't google it and find an easy definition, I tried! A 3 wire winter is when the snow is deep enough to cover all three wires of the barbed wire fences. Local ranchers count the wires on their fences that are covered in snow to determine if it's a good snow year. With an average of over 300 inches of annual snowfall, three wire winters are pretty common in Steamboat Springs and the surrounding areas, but after last year's one wire winter we are all very excited to be experiencing an epic snow year. This year Steamboat has already received close to 250 inches of snow. For the ranch this means pristine skiing on 30km of groomed cross country ski trails, access to endless acres of National Forest for backcountry skiing, snowshoe adventures to the top of [...]
The winter season is upon us and The Home Ranch transforms to a snowy wonderland. As you read this winter storms are blanketing our Elk River Valley with Steamboat's famous Champagne Powder. The holiday spirit has our staff excited to reopen and celebrate Christmas and the New Year with old friends and new acquaintances. The lodge & cabins are aglow with decorations inside and out. Christmas goodies will be everywhere, champagne toasts, music, bonfires and fine food and drink will make for a memorable stay for all. Skiing on the ranch should be teh best ever. We've purchased a new Pisten Bully trail groomer to manicure our trails as never before. Our ski guide team s returning for the most part and the addition of another very experienced instructor to improve your skiing abilities. Sleigh rides, snowshoeing, tubing, dogsledding, hot-tubing and just wonderful dining, music and ambiance is the perfect [...]
Our staff is beginning to arrive at the ranch this week. It is so much fun to meet them all and get the ranch ready for the winter. Christmas lights are going up on the buildings, furniture is being moved around in the living room to make way for the tree and decorations, trail signs are being sprinkled around the meadows to direct guests on their winter adventures and the fishing hut is transforming into the skiing hut. While we still have two weeks until we welcome our first guests, the ranch is at full speed. It's been a great off season full of relaxation, planning and projects. The maintenance crew has added new lights along the lane to the cabins and barn. The wranglers have set up a leather shop in the Rec. Room to make sure the saddles are in top condition for next summer. The kitchen is trying out [...]