Reading for Riders

Welcome to the Bitterroot online magazine. From discounts and recent press to ranch videos and recipes and from tales about the first days of the ranch to helpful riding tips you will find all sorts of information in these pages. We hope this is a great resource as you decide were to go on a horse riding vacation or as you reminisce about your past experiences at the ranch. If you would like to share a story, images or a video from your visit we would love to hear from you. Happy trails!

The Wind River watershed rises just on the east side of the Continental Divide and is a hidden gem for trout fisherman. There are some excellent opportunities for fly fishing on our own private stream and in neighboring lakes and rivers.  The Dubois area gets much less fishing pressure than places like nearby Jackson Hole…

Life is full of surprises. We bought Aspen, a sweet Quarter Horse mare, last summer. In the fall, her belly ballooned, and I was worried she was in foal and about to have a baby. We brought her in, but nothing changed, so we turned her back out. Months passed, she stayed the same, and…

There is a wide variety of wildflowers around Bitterroot Ranch which blossom in glorious profusion in late spring and summer. Many of these plants were used by Native Americans for food or herbal remedies. Some of the roots and leaves were an important source of protein and vitamins. Medical science is discovering today that some…

The high mountain environment of the Bitterroot is beautiful but it is a harsh one to survive year round, leading one of the early inhabitants to remark that, “the only thing you can grow successfully here are jackrabbits!” There was much remodeling in the early years and cabins were either moved in or built to…

Lemon Muffins 1/2 cup butter 1/2 cup sugar 2 eggs, separated 1 cup flour 1 teaspoon soda 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice Grated lemon rind Cream butter and sugar until smooth. Stir in egg yolks and beat until light. Mix flour, baking powder and soda. Add to creamed mixture alternately with lemon juice. Beat egg…

Visit the website of our sister company, Equitours, for some helpful ideas on how to get in shape for your riding vacation.

Zeppelin is our easy keeping leopard Appaloosa. In his younger days Zeppelin enjoyed our cross-country course but these days he prefers a more sedate pace The Story of 3 Dot deserves its own page. Bayard tells an interesting tale about Democrat, one of his favorite horses.   Chamois is a long time favorite amongst ranch…

We were in my wilderness hunting camp 10 miles north of our ranch near Yellowstone Park that October morning. At 9,000 ft. above sea level the temperature dropped to around zero just before dawn and it was crackling cold. We had to be off well before first light. The best time for hunting is that…

It was the buffalo that almost got me killed. Goodness knows those athletic, prehistoric beasts chased me and my horse enough times over the years with evil intent, but it wasn’t their horns which came closest to finishing me at the end of the day. The trouble came when, as a last resort, I hired…

How a wild horse was tamed and became part of our herd. That year we opened our dude ranch and began our trail rides in late May. There is a magnificent piece of land called Mountain Meadows where we often take our guests riding directly to the east of us. It borders the 2 million…

Dude ranches got their start in the West in the 1880s not long after the Battle of the Little Big Horn. Many wealthy foreigners made hunting trips and sight seeing excursions to the American West which was home to abundant wild game and provided magnificent unspoiled scenery. A famous early dude was Theodore Roosevelt. After…

How the seasons change around the ranch Summer guests at our dude ranch have little understanding of the other seasons in this part of the world. Summer is the most important time, but I think it is interesting to know the rest of the story. It makes what one sees in the summer and the…

Ranching probably plays a more important role in Wyoming life than it does in any other state. Wyoming never had rich strikes of gold and silver like neighboring Colorado and Montana which brought thousands of miners and their followers so there was little to hold any of the stream of settlers passing through with dreams…

One of the most compelling images in American history is that of the mounted warrior in full regalia with eagle feather headdress holding spear and shield. It is evocative of consummate equestrian skill, indomitable courage and a life in open spaces free of civilized constraints. It is easy to forget that this colorful equestrian culture…

The Dubois Rodeo is a fun, family-friendly event held every Friday night from mid-June to mid-August. The rodeo is about a 40 minute drive from the ranch, but guests who go think the drive is well worth it. Rodeo visitors will see all the major events: barrel racing, team roping, break away roping, saddle-bronc riding,…

The Shoshone National forest surrounds Dubois and borders our ranch. Much of the economic activity in the Upper Wind River Valley depends on this forest which extends to Yellowstone Park. Our ranch borders the Shoshone National Forest on the north and many of our day rides enter it. It reaches from us to Yellowstone Park…

We are fortunate to have a spectacular view of the Wind River Mountains across the valley from us. On most days we can see 100 miles of this spiny range which also forms the Continental Divide. Guests at the Bitterrot Ranch have the wide vista of the perpetually snowcapped Wind River Mountains in view across…

Following the Wind River The Wind River rises just on the east side of the Continental Divide between Jackson and Dubois to begin its winding journey for thousands of miles to empty eventually into the Gulf of Mexico. It first rushes out of the mountains fed by a myriad of little streams racing to join…