As I’ve mentioned in previous blogs, guest ranching (formerly known as dude ranching) has been around for around one hundred years. It began when wealthy young men, and some women, from the Eastern cities started looking for adventure in new and different places. Perhaps they had heard the call, “Go West, young man” and decided to give it a try without actually pulling up stakes to begin a new lifestyle. Anyway, they ended up at various western ranches where the owners gave them board and room in exchange for working the livestock with the local cowboys.
Well, things have changed a bit as with everything else, and now some western ranches are dedicated to the business of entertaining guests from around the country, and internationally. Many of these ranches are not even “working” ranches anymore; they are simply guest ranches or even resorts. Western ranches usually are located in the midst of beautiful mountainous scenery, with trees, streams and wide-open country. The lifestyle is casual, less complicated, and wholesome with plenty of time outdoors, great food, and quiet, starry nights………just what many work-weary city dwellers are looking for.
In the August issue of Sunset magazine, an article titled Cowboy Quarters tells all about a guest ranch in Wyoming. It includes photos of the ranch and tells the story of the family who own it. A sidebar on one page lists several more western guest ranches, and tells about the unique features of each one. Our ranch, Long Hollow, is one of those mentioned. We are very gratified to be included, and have actually hosted guests already as a result of that article. Of course each ranch is different and special in its own way, so potential guests need to learn what they can about the unique characteristics of ranches that may interest them. For instance, Long Hollow is located in the high desert of Central Oregon, near attractions such as rivers for fishing or rafting, mountains for skiing in winter, wild country for hiking, biking, camping, wildlife watching or star-gazing at night.
Long Hollow Ranch is a historic landmark in Central Oregon, with buildings over 100 years old, but tastefully updated for the comfort and convenience of today’s “dude”. Our guests are not expected to work for their board and room, but are welcome to observe ranch activity or help prepare horses for the daily trail rides. They enjoy hearty delicious meals at the 110 year old ranch house in the company of guests from all around the USA and the world. Friendships are formed with other guests and ranch personnel. Since Long Hollow is a relatively small guest ranch, many visitors return year after year to enjoy the individual attention they get here; they become “part of the family”. Not so much different from the original “dudes” from back East.