The 19 Best Dude Ranches in Montana (Handpicked for 2024)

Mark Barnett
Last Updated: January 19th, 2024

If you’re planning a trip to Montana and are on the hunt for the perfect dude ranch to stay at, then look no further!

We’ve got the best of the best right here to make your life and trip planning just a bit easier. Let’s go ahead and take a look at my top 16 picks for the best dude ranches in Montana!

1. Elkhorn Ranch, Gallatin Gateway

elkhorn ranch gallatin
Image: Elkhorn Ranch Gallatin
  • Location: 33133 Gallatin Rd, Gallatin Gateway, MT 59730, United States
  • Accommodation Options: Log cabins 
  • Capacity: 40
  • Season: June – Mid September
  • Activities offered: Horseback riding, blue-ribbon fly fishing, hiking, whitewater rafting, and more 
  • Amenities: Private bathrooms, down comforters, electric heat, electric heat, reading lights
  • Dining options: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner provided 
  • Rates: $4,250 for 6 nights (adult price) 
  • Reservation: Check availability
  • Website:
  • Best For: A technology-free getaway

This traditional dude ranch has been run by families, for families, since 1922.

Guests of all ages are welcomed to the Elkhorn Ranch. Little has changed in the 100 years since opening – the focus is still very much on family and the great outdoors. A few of the activities available include horseback riding through the wild mountain ranges of Montana, fly-fishing on blue-ribbon fishing streams, and exploring Yellowstone itself (only a mile down the road).

On the ranch, you’ll stay in a rustic log cabin. These cabins, built in the 1930s, are designed to bring you back to a time long since passed. Thankfully, they still boast many 21st century comforts, with modern amenities that ensure your stay will be both rustic and comfortable.

The cabins, which weave between the tall trees of the National Forest, are strategically placed to afford the guests the best sense of privacy, and the most scenic views. Though the lodges are private, there’s a real sense of community at the ranch. People gather in the lodgepole dining hall for meals filled with fun and laughter.

2. Bonanza Creek Guest Ranch, Martinsdale

bonanza creek guest ranch
Image: Bonanza Creek Guest Ranch
  • Location: 523 Bonanza Creek Road, Martinsdale, MT 59053, United States
  • Accommodation Options: Cabins 
  • Capacity: 8 to 12
  • Season: June to September
  • Activities offered: Horseback riding, fishing, hunting, hiking, biking, motorbiking, life coaching 
  • Amenities: Towels, linens, firewood, and free parking. Select cabins include a stove, oven, refrigerator, coffee maker, dishes, glasses, utensils, pots and pans.
  • Dining options: Kitchens provided, $20 full breakfast and $18 sack lunch offered. 
  • Rates (starting price per night): Differs depending on cabin and number of guests 
  • Reservation: Check availability
  • Website:
  • Best For: An authentic ranch experience

Away from the dizzying lights of the city and the never-ending bustle of modern life, the working ranch of Bonanza Creek is an escape into nature.

This ranch has the smallest capacity of any listed here. The staff use the manageable number to create bespoke, personalized experiences. Every vacation at Bonanza Creek is different, according to both the desires and riding ability of the guests. There’s no head-to-tail riding at the ranch – each trip out into the wilderness is an authentic adventure, wandering the rugged backcountry of Montana on a horse specifically chosen to suit your needs.

It’s really the closest you can get to life as a cowboy, traversing the plains of the Old West.

Bonanza Creek offers the most authentic, hands-on ranch experience. Being a working ranch, you can help with the day-to-day chores of running the place, like cattle herding. A visit here is one of the most personalized and authentic experiences when considering dude ranches in Montana!

3. Bar W Guest Ranch, Whitefish

bar w guest ranch
Image: Bar W Guest Ranch
  • Location: 2875 US-93, Whitefish, MT 59937, United States 
  • Accommodation Options: Lodge, cabin, tent
  • Capacity: 40 
  • Season: Open all year round
  • Activities offered: Hatchet throwing, skeet shooting, archery, arrow tag, fly casting lessons, Spencer Lake activities, lawn games, Lion Mountain hiking, line dancing, bonfire night, and much more. 
  • Amenities: Differs depending on selected accommodation 
  • Dining options: Food provided at dining all. Chef accommodates sugar free (diabetes), gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan, and lactose intolerance.
  • Rates: From $2,700 for 6 night all-inclusive (differs depending on package selected) 
  • Reservation: Check availability
  • Website:
  • Best For: An action-packed stay

The picturesque backdrop of Whitefish is the setting for the Bar W Guest Ranch, which sits at the base of Spencer Mountain, framed on both sides by dense pine forest.

The spectacular Glacier National Park is only 30 miles away.

Bar W offers the full western experience. On top of riding through thousands of acres on horseback, you can try your hand at skeet shooting, fly fishing, roping, archery, cattle drives, rodeo games, wagon rides and square dancing. After a long day of activities you can look forward to closing out the day with cookouts and campfires.

Guests are quickly made to feel like family at Bar W – friendly staff and a strong community are an essential, often understated part of the dude ranch experience. Accommodation options at the ranch include the main lodge, cabins, and glamping.

4. Mountain Sky Guest Ranch, Emigrant

mountain sky guest ranch
Image: Mountain Sky Guest Ranch
  • Location: 480 NF-132, Emigrant, MT 59027, United States
  • Accommodation Options: Cabins 
  • Capacity: 85
  • Season: May to October
  • Activities offered: Horseback riding, kids activities, golf, fly fishing, hiking, Yellowstone tours, clay shooting, archery, challenge course, cattle work, white water rafting, and more. 
  • Amenities: Stone fireplaces, heated pool, hot tub, grotto, steam room, sauna, and tennis court.
  • Dining options: buffet-style breakfast and lunch, five-course dinner, desserts
  • Rates: Starts at $4,575.00 (one person cabin, one week stay) 
  • Reservation: Check availability
  • Website:
  • Best For: Rest and relaxation

For those looking to combine the dude ranch experience with a little more luxury, the upscale Mountain Sky Guest Ranch is a perfect choice. The ranch, close to Yellowstone, was opened as a dude ranch in 1929.

Fine dining and gourmet chefs, a wellness center, and a world-class golf course are just a few examples of the extra amenities available. It’s a luxurious resort that blends the elegance of high-end accommodation with the rugged backcountry of Montana.

A visit to the ranch is an adventure for a lifetime. Go white-water rafting, cattle wrangling, and tour the unmissable Yellowstone National Park during your stay. Whether you want a cowboy adventure or a stay of relaxing recuperation, the Mountain Sky Guest Ranch will suit your every need.

5. 320 Guest Ranch, Big Sky

  • Location: 205 Buffalo Horn Creek Rd, Gallatin Gateway, MT 59730, United States 
  • Accommodation Options: Cabins, log homes, chalets 
  • Capacity: 50+
  • Season: Open all year round
  • Activities offered: Horseback riding, fly fishing lessons, soap making, sleigh rides, mountain medicine, dancing. 
  • Amenities: Differs depending on selected accommodation 
  • Dining options: McGill’s restaurant, cafe, porchside picnic, Chuckwagon BBQ
  • Rates: From $450 per night (regular season) 
  • Reservation: Check availability
  • Website:
  • Best For: Rich history

Located between Big Sky and Yellowstone National Park, 320 Guest Ranch honors its rich history and celebrates Montana’s pioneer spirit through lodging, food, and activities. They offer a variety of accommodations, ranging from 3-bedroom cabins (with a 10-person capacity) to its historic McGill Cabin with a cozy 2 person capacity.

320 Guess Ranch offers on-site fine dining at its McGill’s Restaurant & Saloon.  They also offer a coffee and snack cafe simply called The Cafe.

The great team at 320 also facilities on-site activities such as horseback riding, fly fishing, workshops, kids’ activities and more.

I highly recommend a visit to the 320 Guest Ranch, located in the heart of Big Sky country.

6. Lone Mountain Ranch, Big Sky

lone mountain ranch
Image: Lone Mountain Ranch
  • Location: 750 Lone Mountain Ranch Rd, Big Sky, MT 59716, United States
  • Accommodation Options: Cabins 
  • Capacity: 105 
  • Season: Open all year round
  • Activities offered: Sleigh ride dinners, skiing, snowshoeing, dog sledding, Yellowstone tours, fly fishing.
  • Amenities: Text for service, coffee makers, record players.
  • Dining options: Food provided at Horn & Cantle Restaurant, The Saloon, or signature experiences.
  • Rates: From $1,059 (three night stay, price differs depending on selected package).
  • Reservation: Check availability
  • Website:
  • Best For: Winter getaways

Only 18 miles northwest of Yellowstone National Park and adjacent to the Big Sky ski resort, the Lone Mountain Ranch was made for adventure.

In winter, you can take to the slopes on 80 miles of world-class Nordic trails. Summer offers activities like horseback riding, canoeing, and ax-throwing. The long summer evenings are made memorable with farm-to-table cuisine and live western music. It is one of the few dude ranches in Montana that offer activities year round!

The ranch is also known for its cuisine, with the Horn & Cantle restaurant one of the finest dining experiences in Big Sky.

The cabins are made to feel rustic, but chic; there’s a touch of luxury to the Lone Mountain Ranch. It’s the perfect ranch for families – proven with its win of ‘Best Family Ranch’ by Top 50 Ranches.

7. Triple Creek Ranch, Darby

triple creek ranch
Image: Triple Creek Ranch
  • Location: 5551 W Fork Rd, Darby, MT 59829, United States
  • Accommodation Options: Cabins, suites, ranch homes 
  • Capacity: 46 
  • Season: Open all year round 
  • Activities offered: Horseback riding, cattle working rides, trail rides, fly fishing, snow shoeing, yoga, dog sledding, skiing, river floats, white water rafting, hiking, shooting, soap and candle making, and much more. 
  • Amenities: Pool, sauna, fitness center, tennis and pickleball court, puzzles, games and movies. 
  • Dining options: Food provided, including snacks and packed lunches 
  • Reservation: Check availability
  • Website: 
  • Best For: A romantic getaway

The adults-only Triple Creek Ranch is a proud member of the prestigious Relais & Châteaux and an example of ‘refined rustic elegance’.

The award-winning alpine resort is located on the southern side of Trapper Peak, in the Bitterroot Mountain Range of western Montana. All of the usual western adventures are available, but what really sets Triple Creek Ranch apart is its emphasis on being the pinnacle of luxury. A world-class restaurant serving gourmet cuisine and award-winning wine, 5-star service all over the ranch, and cabins where even the smallest attention to detail is not missed.

It’s the complete package – when partnered with the lush scenery of alpine forest and rugged peaks, it makes one of the best hotels in the world.

Thanks in no small part to being adult-only, the Triple Creek Ranch is the most romantic getaway on this list; enjoy a relaxing stay with your loved one in the serene countryside away from it all.

8. Triple J Wilderness Ranch, Augusta

triple j wilderness ranch
Image: Triple J Wilderness Ranch
  • Location: 91 Mortimer Rd, Augusta, MT 59410, United States 
  • Accommodation Options: Cabins 
  • Capacity: 24 
  • Season: June to September
  • Activities offered: Horseback riding, fly fishing, hiking, trap shooting, archery, cattle penning, roping, swimming, horseshoes, volleyball, basketball, corn hole and more. 
  • Amenities: Down comforters, mini refrigerators, coffee, tea, complimentary welcome basket, herbal toiletries, hair dryer, robes, wood stoves, wood delivered daily, daily housekeeping, and more. 
  • Dining options: Family-style meals, buffet, or plated dinner in the lodge dining room or outdoors.
  • Rates: From $2,600 (one adult, five night stay)
  • Reservation: Check availability
  • Website:
  • Best For: A luxurious trip

Triple J Wilderness is an authentic, family-run dude ranch in Montana’s Rocky Mountain Front, between the Glacier National Park and Yellowstone. The ranch has an excellent kids program, wilderness packs and the option to stay during adults-only weeks.

It’s an ideal choice for those hoping for a vacation tailored to their tastes. The smaller number of guests makes for a more intimate experience; you can create your own personal western adventure at the ranch.

If you prefer to keep your feet on the ground, you can go hiking, fly-fishing or try one of the numerous other outdoor activities on offer. For the epic horse riding adventures, the staff cater to all abilities – from the most experienced equestrian to a complete novice – and venture deep into the untouched wilderness of Montana.

To add to the special experience, you are assigned the same horse for your entire stay, allowing you to bond with the animal, creating unforgettable memories together throughout your stay.

End your busy day with cookouts and campfires, complete with cowboy poetry, tall tales, singing & marshmallow roasting.

9. Circle Bar Guest Ranch, Hobson

circle bar guest ranch
Image: Circle Bar Guest Ranch
  • Location: 206 Porcupine Ridge Rd, Hobson, MT 59452, United States 
  • Accommodation Options: Cabins, Buffalo rooms, ranch houses 
  • Capacity: 40 
  • Season: Late May to September
  • Activities offered: Horseback riding, guided tours, sport shooting, fishing, 3d archery, hiking.
  • Amenities: Hot tub, game and rec room, historic barn. 
  • Dining options: Breakfast, lunch and dinner all included in package.
  • Rates: Starting at $445 (single guest, less than 7 night stay) 
  • Reservation: Check availability
  • Website:
  • Best For: A rustic experience

Follow in the steps of Old West painter Charlie Russell at the historic Circle Bar Guest Ranch.

The ranch dates back to the 1800s and sits alongside the scenic Judith River in central Montana. Horse riding is a way of life here – guests of all abilities are encouraged to explore the picturesque surroundings on horseback, including the Little Belt Mountains and Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest. The UTV guided tours and fat-tire E-bikes offer an alternative to riding.

The historic red barn is the center of entertainment on the ranch, hosting everything from square dancing to basketball games.

Circle Bar offers all the activities you might expect of a dude ranch, including shooting and archery. The ranch has nine historic cabins and the Ranch House for larger groups of guests.

10. Hawley Mountain Guest Ranch

Hawley Mountain Guest Ranch

  • Location: 4188 Main Boulder Rd, Mc Leod, MT 59052, United States
  • Accommodation Options: Lodge rooms, cabins. 
  • Capacity: TBC
  • Season: Late May to September 
  • Activities offered: Horseback riding, river float, jeep adventure, hiking, hunting, campfires, fly fishing, wellness retreat. 
  • Amenities: Differs depending on selected accommodation 
  • Dining options: Buffet style meals served three times a day, all included
  • Reservation: Check availability
  • Website:
  • Best For: Comfort and relaxation

Enjoy an outdoor Montana guest ranch vacation. Fun in a million-acre pristine wilderness north of Yellowstone Park away from the distractions of your busy life.

“All-inclusive” reasonable rates. Small guest numbers provide a family atmosphere and a stress-free relaxing week with many unique memory-making activities. Horseback riding is a mainstay. Blue ribbon fly fishing, a 6×6 jeep adventure, scenic river rafting, and many other activities can also be enjoyed while experiencing the warm western hospitality of a small dude ranch.

If you like the outdoors, you will appreciate life at Hawley Mountain Guest Ranch. It’s wild and remote! We are the last dude ranch at the end of a gravel road. Take part in activities with us and then you, whether single or with your family, will eat meals together with our family of staff and owners.

Spend a week of memory-making at Hawley Mountain. You’ll take away new experiences and long-lasting friendships. Contact us now and join us for a fun refreshing vacation.

11. JJJ Wilderness Ranch, Augusta

jjj wilderness ranch
Image: Ranch Seeker
  • Location: 91 Mortimer Rd, Augusta, MT 59410, United States 
  • Accommodation Options: Cabins 
  • Capacity: 24 
  • Season: June to September
  • Activities offered: Horseback riding, fly fishing, hiking, trap shooting, archery, cattle penning, roping, swimming, horseshoes, volleyball, basketball, corn hole and more. 
  • Amenities: Down comforters, mini refrigerators, coffee, tea, complimentary welcome basket, herbal toiletries, hair dryer, robes, wood stoves, wood delivered daily, daily housekeeping, and more. 
  • Dining options: Family-style meals, buffet, or plated dinner in the lodge dining room or outdoors.
  • Rates: From $2,600 (one adult, five night stay)
  • Reservation: Check availability
  • Website:
  • Best For: A luxurious trip

The JJJ/Triple J Wilderness Ranch is located in a region of Montana’s Rocky Mountain Front between the Yellowstone and Glacier National Parks. This working dude ranch in Montana overlooks the Sun River as well as the local Gibson Lake.

Stepping outdoors from this spot is also your gateway to the Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex. This established and family-owned Montana dude ranch provides an outlet for some fantastic outdoor exploration including trout fishing and hiking on top of horseback riding.

The ranch offers the typical Western hospitality long associated with the region and then some. Triple J is ideal for guests of any age or background seeking an authentic Montana escape. Singles, couples, and families alike can all enjoy a broad range of extra activities made accessible by the ranch with the main feature being horseback riding.

The genuine, western hospitality on offer here provides a welcome alternative to the fast-paced world of city life. The ranch usually accepts guests from early June until late September.

12. Blacktail Ranch, Wolf Creek

blacktail ranch wolf creek

  • Location: 4440 S Fork Trail, Wolf Creek, MT 59648, United States 
  • Accommodation Options: Main lodge, cabins 
  • Capacity: 15
  • Season: Open June-October
  • Activities offered: Horseback riding, cave exploration and museum, 3 day divide ride, bird watching, fishing, area activities. 
  • Amenities: Differs depending on selected accommodation 
  • Dining options: Buffet-style breakfast and lunch, dinner and dessert provided 
  • Rates: From $425 per night (adult, main lodge) 
  • Reservation: Check availability
  • Website:
  • Best For: A homely stay

If you are a fan of horses and exploration this dude ranch in Montana is for you. Blacktail Ranch has a heritage dating back to the late 1880’s when Gustav Rittel homesteaded the property. The ranch owners and everyone involved in the day-to-day operations is reportedly friendly and dedicated to making sure your stay is comfortable and enjoyable.

The ranch is popular due to its Continental Divide ride excursion accompanied by a guide who happens to be the owner’s charming and attentive grandson. The 16-mile ride climbs 3000 feet and follows the divide trail for 5 miles before descending to the valley via switchbacks.

Thankfully the horses from the ranch are experienced, strong, and sure-footed, and every last detail is covered before setting off on the ride, which is often like something never experienced before by many riders, including experienced ones.

You can expect the cuisine to be fantastic and plentiful in this is rustic, homely lodging, whether you stay in the lodge itself or in one of the available cabins. Here guests can experience impressively scenic trail riding with views in every direction.

13. Sweet Grass Ranch, Big Timber

sweet grass ranch

  • Location: 460 Rein Ln, Big Timber, MT 59011, United States
  • Accommodation Options: Cabins 
  • Capacity: 25 
  • Season: Open June-September
  • Activities offered: Hiking, fishing, campfires, watersports, softball, field hockey, volleyball, and horseshoes. 
  • Amenities: Differs depending on selected accommodation 
  • Dining options: Homemade ranch style food available. 
  • Rates: From $400/night per person 
  • Reservation: Check availability
  • Website:
  • Best For: A secluded stay

Sweet Grass Ranch is an authentic working Montana ranch offering vacation stays with horseback riding and other activities such as cattle work, fishing, and hiking trips to interested parties.

Located right at the base of the Crazy Mountain Range, the diverse terrain around this working cattle ranch is just made for exploration via horseback, as well as by many other means. With a 7-night stay at this ranch you get 6 full days of riding and there are special rates for children aged 12 and under.

Riding enthusiasts will love it as well as the amazing home-cooked food and comfortable lodgings which feature a hot tub to soak away any encroaching aches and pains from all that time in the saddle.The ranch is in a reasonably remote location guests will find it well worth the effort to get there.

Sweet Grass Ranch offers additional activities such as a multi-day cattle drive with overnight camping as well as single or multi-day trips up into the mountains.

14. The Ranch at Rock Creek, Philipsburg

the ranch at rock creek

  • Location: 79 Carriage House Ln, Philipsburg, MT 59858, United States
  • Accommodation Options: Barn, cabins, lodge 
  • Capacity: 125
  • Season: Open all year round
  • Activities offered: Skiing, snowboarding, ice skating, horseback riding, sledding, archery, biking, ice fishing, hiking, golf, painting, and much more. 
  • Amenities: Twice-daily housekeeping, requested snacks and beverages, bathrobe and slippers, luxury bathroom amenities and bathroom kit, landline, wireless internet, television, air conditioning, hair dryer, and much more. 
  • Dining options: Breakfast, lunch and dinner available at multiple dining venues. 
  • Rates: From $4,400 per night (classic cabin).
  • Reservation: Check availability
  • Website:
  • Best For: High quality amenities

This working ranch and resort covers 6,000 acres in Montana’s Granite County. The ranch is located southeast of Missoula and is surrounded by rugged yet scenic terrain that allows guests to access Montana’s signature, wide-open spaces backed-up by rather upscale amenities.

Covering 10 square miles of rolling hay meadows and foothills complete with snow-capped peaks in the distance, this amazing location provides yet another authentic Montana ranch experience. Guests will find the Ranch at Rock Creek provides a touch of the West without comprising comfort.

Winter means snow-shoeing, cross-country skiing, sleigh rides, and lots of other fun and challenging pursuits. Aside from the focus is most likely on horseback riding, hiking, cattle drives, fishing, and even a spot of yoga. There’s even indoor entertainment by way of a spa, a movie theater, and an onsite bowling alley.

15. The Resort at Paws Up, Greenough

the resort at paws up
Image: Ranch Seeker
  • Location: 40060 Paws Up Rd, Greenough, MT 59823, United States 
  • Accommodation Options: Homes, lodge, glamping 
  • Capacity: 275 
  • Season: Open all year round 
  • Activities offered: Fly fishing, shooting sports, trail adventures,climbing and hiking, river and lake activities, adventures in flight, driving adventures, horseback riding wilderness workshops, and more. 
  • Amenities: Differs depending on selected accommodation
  • Dining options: Casual outdoor dining, camp cuisine, restaurants, cocktail bar 
  • Rates: From $1926 per person (differs depending on accommodation and season) 
  • Reservation: Check availability
  • Website:
  • Best For: Wilderness adventures

The resort at Paws Up is a working cattle ranch in the western Blackfoot Valley of central western Montana covering close to 40,000 acres of amazing landscape. The ranch is just 30 minutes east of the Missoula Airport and is an ideal location from which to completely unwind.

Tranquility is the prominent feature here, aside from the views and the available activities. This ranch resort will appeal to anyone looking for an all-inclusive, ranch-style vacation. The entire resort is surrounded by unspoiled wilderness and close to the banks of the Blackfoot River. Of course you get to head on some horseback riding excursions, and guests can also try a spot of fishing in world-class fly fishing waters.

The ranch promises a commitment to providing an intimate and authentic connection with the surrounding nature of Montana, while taking great care not to skimp on luxurious comfort. Guests receive a first-class, personalized service at this ranch and the operation features 28 vacation homes and 36 luxury camping tents.

On top of that a plethora of wilderness adventures are on offer along with a range of amenities which all help to make any stay at the ranch a lasting memory. The ranch caters to every age group, and the staff reportedly caters to your every need.  Activities on offer at the resort include both easy-going and more challenging options according to how you feel.

16. Paradise Rest Ranch, West Yellowstone

paradise rest ranch

  • Location: 1279 Grayling Creek Rd, West Yellowstone, MT 59758, United States 
  • Accommodation Options: Cabins 
  • Capacity: 40 
  • Season: Open May-September
  • Activities offered: Horseback riding, dinner sleigh rides, fly-fishing, mountain bike riding, hiking, fishing, and more. 
  • Amenities: Games, cards, a piano, WIFI, satellite TV, horseshoes, a basketball hoop, and lawn games. 
  • Dining options: Hot meals available three times a day. 
  • Rates: Base rate from $391.20/night per person (adult, all-inclusive) 
  • Reservation: Check availability
  • Website:
  • Best For: Quality rest

Parade Rest Guest Ranch is a great option for anyone wanting to stay in the Yellowstone Country area. Just 15 minutes from the West Entrance of the national park, this Montana dude ranch provides great food and horseback riding excursions.

Other activities like fly-fishing, mountain bike riding, and hiking are on offer amidst the beautiful surrounding scenery. Guests are also privy to blue-ribbon trout fishing and white-water rafting trips within the vicinity of the national park.

Paradise Rest Ranch is in fact the closest to the park out of all the guest ranches in the region and provides an all-inclusive package that includes log cabin accommodation, food and activities and excursions like horseback riding and cook-outs in the mountains.

The land around the ranch features 15 log cabins of various sizes in all, with some close to prime fly-fishing spots like Grayling Creek. Others overlook the Gallatin Mountain Range and other famous spots such as Hebgen Lake.

17. Nine Quarter Circle Ranch

Nine Quarter Circle Ranch
Source: Nine Quarter Circle Ranch
  • Location: 5000 Taylor Fork Rd, Gallatin Gateway, MT 59730, United States 
  • Accommodation Options: Cabins 
  • Capacity: 60 
  • Season: Open June – August 
  • Activities offered: Horseback riding, fly fishing, swimming, hiking, square dancing, games, and more. 
  • Amenities: Private bath, wood stove or fireplace, porches with patio furniture (differs depending on selected accommodation). 
  • Dining options: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner included 
  • Rates: From $4,500 (one adult, six night stay) 
  • Website: 
  • Best For: A traditional family ranch experience 

The Nine Quarter Circle Ranch has been welcoming guests for over a century! 

This homely and beloved ranch is a great pick if you are wanting to stay at a traditional and family-owned ranch. 

There are a wide range of activities to keep you occupied while you stay at this ranch, such as horseback riding, fishing, swimming, and hiking, just to name a few.

There is even a kids program packed full of activities to keep the little ones occupied! 

The provided food is also a high point, with hot, home cooked meals available to you three times a day. 

There is even dedicated kids dining and adults dining to ensure that everyone is being fed at the times that best suit them. 

If you want to experience true Western comfort, then the Nine Quarter Circle Ranch may just be the getaway that you are looking for. From incredible food to action-packed activities available, this place is hard to beat! 

18. Averill’s Flathead Lake Lodge

Source: Flathead Lake Lodge
  • Location: 150 Flathead Lodge Rd, Bigfork, MT 59911, United States
  • Accommodation Options: Cabins, lodge, suites, homestead 
  • Capacity: 120
  • Season: Open May – October 
  • Activities offered: Swimming, laser tag, fishing, fly fishing, white water rafting, tennis, biking, and much more. 
  • Amenities: Tennis court, WIFI, bike hire, pool, free parking, housekeeping. 
  • Dining options: Home cooked breakfast, lunch, and dinner available. 
  • Rates: From $4,858 (one adult, lodge rate) 
  • Website: 
  • Best For: A fun-filled getaway 

If you’re looking for a ranch that is going to ensure you are never bored for a moment, then Averill’s Flathead Lake Lodge may just be the pick for you. 

This lodge is an all-inclusive experience that is packed full of activities, incredible food, and luxurious accommodation.

You can enjoy unbelievably fun activities such as swimming, fishing, tenning – even laser tag! 

Enjoy a bike ride by taking advantage of the on-site bike hire, or kick up your feet and relax outside your cabin, lodge, or suite. 

This ranch is also just 40 minutes from Glacier National Park, so you can head off and explore the gorgeous surrounding area for the day before retiring back to the lodge. 

There is also food included in your stay, so you can enjoy a home cooked meal three times a day! 

If you are on the hunt for a traditional lodge that is also going to provide you with luxury amenities and a wide range of activities to keep you occupied, Averill’s Flathead Lake Lodge is a perfect pick for you.

19. Sun Canyon Lodge

Source: Sun Canyon Lodge
  • Location: 8571 Sun Canyon Lodge Rd, Augusta, MT 59410, United States 
  • Accommodation Options: Cabins, glamping 
  • Capacity: 60
  • Season: Open May – November 
  • Activities offered: Hunting, horseback riding, fishing. 
  • Amenities: Private bathroom, fridge, microwave (differs depending on select accommodation) 
  • Dining options: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner available for purchase 
  • Rates: From $162 per night (cabin) 
  • Website: 
  • Best For: Small, homely vacation 

The Sun Canyon Lodge is a beloved retreat destination with glowing reviews – and for good reason. 

The owners of this lodge, Josh and Niki, along with their incredibly hard-working crew keep the area full of laughter and friendly faces! 

You can choose to stay in one of the available cabins, park up your R.V, or partake in a bit of on-site glamping. There are a range of activities available, including horseback riding, hunting, and fishing. 

Enjoy some delicious food at the lodge, check out a trail or two, do some horseback riding, or relax by the water. You’ll never run out of things to do at the Sun Canyon Lodge. 

This is also one of the more affordable ranch options in the area, so if you’re on a bit of a budget, you may want to keep the Sun Canyon Lodge in mind. 

This spot is a hidden gem that is a great pick for those wanting a homely and welcoming environment to stay in! 

Tips for planning a dude ranch vacation in Montana 

If you’re planning a dude ranch vacation in Montana, you may find yourself getting a little bit stressed when organizing the trip. 

Doesn’t it always seem to feel as though you’re forgetting something? That’s where we come in! 

Here are my top tips to keep in mind when planning a dude ranch vacation in Montana:

Check for family-friendly activities

If you are traveling with kids, then the types of activities offered by a ranch is something that you may want to consider. Are there family-friendly activities? 

More importantly, is this a family friendly ranch? Or, is it an adults-only retreat? 

Take into account the age range and preferences of those coming on your getaway and make sure that the ranch has activities that are going to cater to both you and your little ones! 

Visit based on weather and seasonal activities

There’s no point in visiting a lakeside ranch with goals of doing some fishing and water-skiing only to realize that the lake is frozen over and they do not offer these activities during the winter season. 

Make sure you double check which ranch activities are available during which season and book your trip accordingly! 

Inquire about horseback riding levels

Horseback riding is a huge part of the ranch experience – but if you’ve never done it before, you’re probably going to want to start at a beginner level!

Similarly, if you’re a horse riding pro, you don’t want to be limited to basic riding levels the whole time. 

Check out the horseriding levels and activities offered by the ranch and ensure that they match up with your own needs and preferences. 

Inquire about additional activities (fishing, hiking, etc)

If you have your heart set on enjoying a specific activity during your trip to a ranch, it is always a good idea to inquire about the availability of these before you book your stay. 

This is a good move for a number of reasons!

For one, they may be seasonal activities that are not offered during the period that you plan to visit. 

They may also have limited slots that require pre-booking. A quick phone call to the ranch can solve a whole lot of hassle when it comes to activities. 

Confirm if Wi-Fi and cell service are available

Many ranches these days are leaning into the rustic getaway aspect – which means no Wi-Fi or cell service. 

If you are wanting to remain connected to the outside world during your trip, it is definitely a good idea to contact the ranch about this beforehand. 

While this information is often listed on the ranch’s website, it is still worth checking in to ensure that nothing has changed; you don’t want to drop off the grid without informing friends and family first! 

Pack appropriate clothing for the season

Many ranch activities involve being outdoors and exposed to the elements for long periods of time. 

For this reason, it is very important that you pack appropriate clothing for the season!

This means layers of warm jackets, pants, and boots for winter, and sunhats, swimwear, and some flip-flops for summer. 

Many ranch websites actually include a section that outlines some clothing and equipment that they recommend guests bring depending on the season. 

Check cancellation policies

If anything crops up that causes you to cancel your trip, you don’t want to be caught off guard by any cancellation fees or policies that you were not previously aware of. 

Before booking your stay at a ranch, be sure to check out the cancellation policies!

This can eliminate a whole lot of stress and confusion later on down the line should you need to cancel for any reason.

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About The Author

Mark Barnett

Mark Philip is a writer and lifestyle enthusiast from the Midlands in the U.K. With a background in martial arts and fitness, Mark headed out to Bangkok, Thailand where he now lives and works. Mark has authored e-books, articles, and blogs across a wide range of topics for commercial, educational, factual, lifestyle and leisure-based purposes.

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