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!

Our ranch is located in the foothills of the Absaroka Mountains and looks across the Wind River Valley toward the snowcapped peaks of the Wind River Mountains. The 60 square mile grazing lease for our cattle during the summer is located at the southern end of the vast expanse of the Absarokas. Many of our…

Wyoming has one of the largest Indian reservations in the US called the Wind River Reservation which covers an area half the size of New Jersey. It covers a large part of the Wind River Valley and the surrounding mountains with good farm land and excellent hunting and fishing. It has significant oil and natural…

Wyoming is home to one of the great natural treasures on our planet; Yellowstone Park. It was the first national park preserved by any country and remains the most famous. Despite its remote location, it has about 3 million visitors a year. Signs of volcanic action are everywhere and the fiery tumult of the earth?s…

The breathtaking vista of the Snake River Valley with the steep chain of the snow clad Teton Mountains rising to such a great height so sharply behind is unquestionably one of the world’s most unforgettable and uplifting sights. There are countless trails for hikers and many challenging ascents for mountain climbers to say nothing of…

–An article by Marion Shearer, TTEAM Practitioner Level 3, Ontario, Canada It was my first trip to Wyoming and I was looking forward to attending a TTEAM (Tellington-Touch Equine Awareness Method) Clinic with Linda Tellington-Jones to be held at the Bitterroot Ranch. Landing at the Old West town of Jackson Hole, nestled at the base…

Cody is about a five hour drive from the ranch and lies near the eastern entrance to Yellowstone NP. It is the home of the Buffalo Bill Historical Center which is an absolutely world class museum. The collections of Western art, American Indian anthropology and firearms are superb. In Cody one can also visit the…

Wyoming’s rugged beauty, its striking contrasts and the vastness of its mountainous landscape can only be fully appreciated from the air. Extensive roadless areas make the back country hard to visit. This unique statewide collection of aerial photographs provides sweeping overviews of one of America’s most beautiful and inaccessible regions. Viewed from the air, new…

Wind River Country, Hidden Heart of Wyoming is a 176 page book containing hundreds of color pictures by Claude Poulet, the award winning French photographer who fell in love with this country and has spent much of his time here for the last 25 years and lengthy text by Bayard Fox, owner of the Bitterroot…

“The Complete Guide to Endurance Riding and Competition” Donna Snyder-Smith’s book offers training insights and insider information on the new and dynamic sport of endurance riding. It is a valuable resource for pleasure, competitive trail, and experienced endurance riders alike. Non-riders (family or friends), who have volunteered or been drafted to serve in the capacity…

Many of the cabins at the ranch were not built as guest cabins but instead are re-purposed settlers cabins that maintain the charm and storied history of their past. The oldest guest cabin original to the ranch is the Homestead cabin, built by Gavin Duncan, one of four Scottish brothers that settled in our part…

In the last half of the 19th century, as the Indian wars drew to a close, cowboys and outlaws began to move in. This was the time when the epic cattle drives up from Texas to Montana took place and ranchers were discovering that cattle could be raised profitably in this part of the world….

Our valley was only settled by white men a little over a century ago, hardly a blip in history compared to at least 9,000 years of habitation by Native Americans. One cannot live long in this land of spectacular natural beauty without becoming aware of a previous culture which had carved out a unique life…

A memorable aspect of a vacation at the Bitterroot is the wildlife which can often be observed on the ranch and nearby.  The sparse human population and large, inaccessible areas have helped preserve good habitat.  Our ranch is surrounded on all sides by either national forest or a 60,000 acre Wyoming Game and Fish habitat…

For those of you who have been to the ranch, you have almost certainly seen the Butch Cassidy Hideout, an old cabin in which Butch Cassidy and his crew stayed when they were running from the law. It is a small, well-hidden cabin a few miles from the ranch. It is Bayard’s favorite ride and…

A couple of weeks ago Richard and I went down to the farm on a Sunday for a marathon day. Our goals were ambitious: 1. Catch riding horses, tack them up and trailer them over to the field that (hopefully) houses the Team Sorters (shock of shocks– they’ve been escaping recently!). FYI: Team Sorting is…

Saturday’s sky is overcast, and there is a strange haze hanging over the ranch, the sort of haze we normally see mid-summer when there are large forest fires in Colorado or Nevada. I am on the bench riding Arizona, one of our flashy brown and white paint horses, in a western saddle and wearing my…

It is always a bittersweet moment when we move from the farm to the ranch in May. I love the activity of the summer season: riding with our returning guests, who have become dear friends over the years, and meeting new guests, getting the chance to see the ranch for the first time all over…

Throughout the winter at the farm, we move the horses every month or two to a new pasture to graze. We throw open the gates, call them in high-pitched voices and lure them toward the open gate with a hay truck. They quickly figure out they are moving (literally) to greener pastures, and they soar…

Last Tuesday morning Richard and I drove to Dubois for a Grazing Association meeting and a Forest Service meeting, with plans to stay the night at the ranch with Mel and Bayard. The East Fork Grazing Association consists of three families: the Foxes, the Finleys and the Lindsays. The association is allowed to have 300…

Branding is a very social event in Wyoming. Ranchers often make a party out of branding day by having a cook-out and inviting friends and family to take part. These ranchers frequently ride horseback and rope their calves in order to brand them. Doing it this way requires a lot of people and some very…