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“A Wonderful Time!”

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Free Rein Guest Ranch
Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“A Wonderful Time!”
Reviewed July 9, 2012

We just returned from Free Rein Guest Ranch, a place that makes one feel part of the family for sure! I had never been on a horse before and Debbie`s incredible teaching ability made me feel safe and able to ride. Her work with our 10 year old grandaughter and the way she made her feel so special was amazing. The knowledge that Debbie has of ranching and forests and of course horses, gave us such great confidence in our selection of ranch opportunites that were available. We met people from around the world which so added to the enjoyment of our time away. One night I got up and looked out our cabin window and saw the most spectacular sight: a full moon shining over the white mist rising from the lake! The wild flowers were spectacular and there were no bugs! Thanks to all!

Room Tip: Beautiful view and good space in the log cabins! sleeps 4; double bed on loft
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with family
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1 Thank Sharleen K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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122 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
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English first
Chicago, Illinois
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed July 9, 2012

My family and I had a wonderful time! My wife and son had never been on a horse before this trip. The quality of the wranglers and horses are excellent. The horses are so well trained and behaved! Debbie and her family have created a wonderful environment where whether you are an experienced rider or just learning to ride you create your ranch trip experience and Debbie and her staff are there to make it happen. The smaller operation size allows the individual attention and caring that makes this a rare opportunity/experience. The countryside is beautiful. The rides are through pretty aspen groves, pine forests and along numerous ponds and lakes. Great place and I think a key question for any review is; Would you return? YES!

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank VacationGZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Surrey, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed June 22, 2012

Over ten years ago, my best friend and I started talking about going to a ranch for a vacation. We didn't know anything about them, just knew that we both loved horses, and wanted to do it together. On June 5, 2012 we made this happen. It was definitely a "bucket list" item for both of us.
From the minute we turned into the Free Rein Guest Ranch's driveway, the butterflies started and the excitement was unbelievable. This is a little bit of heaven, deep in the Cariboo. I had never been to the Cariboo before, and was so impressed with its quiet beauty and variety of sights and landscape.
The Ranch itself is breathtaking, from the lakeside cabins, to the beautiful lodge, and the majestic scenery. But more importantly than this, are the amazing people who get to call this wonderful place home - Deb, Kath, and Findlay. Never have I felt so welcomed, so loved and so much at home within five minutes of meeting them. Greeted with a huge bear hug by Deb, and big smiles from Kath and Findlay, I knew this was going to be a fantastic time. The wranglers, Ashley and Kitt helped make this time away from home so much fun. We laughed and talked during all of our rides, and both of them made me feel very comfortable when asking questions about all the knots I needed to know - even when I asked more than once or twice !
I had quite a bit of exposure to horses before I got there (albeit some time ago) and thought I knew horses quite well. Deb showed me a whole other side to these wonderful creatures. In the corral, I experienced a life changing moment where I learned to create a relationship with my horse, Boo, that was based on respect, teamwork and a deep level of understanding. Yes, it brought me to tears, and I will cherish that memory for the rest of my life.
This is not one of those ranches, where you show up, have the big fluffy white robes, and slippers waiting for you (although there was a nice bottle of wine!). This is a place where you go and get back to nature, be as involved as you want to be in the horses, ride as much or as little as you want, in the most beautiful setting, with the most giving, caring people!
Kath was very understanding and helpful with my limited diet, so the three meals a day we had were fantastic!!! We even had a bonfire, roasted marshmallows and sang one night !
The horses are very healthy, happy and eager to please.
This is a magical place that both my friend and I will go back to ~ with our daughters in tow I am sure.
Thank you to Deb and everyone else at the ranch for making my dream trip more than I ever imagined it to be ~ I felt like part of the family when we left.
Thank you !

Room Tip: If you can get a cabin on the lake ~ go for it. The views are unbelievable, and just to sit out on t...
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank Julie G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
1 review
Reviewed June 3, 2012

I would like to thank Debbie, her family & Kitt for their great hospitality during our stay at Free Rein Ranch. I felt like I went home when I arrived at the ranch !! It was like we were in the company of family with their caring attentive ways. Each and every guest is treated this way !The horses are so healthy and tame and Debbie goes out of her way to share such valuable knowledge she has about these beautiful animals. She even teaches you how to bond with your horse in the corral before riding....it was so amazing how my horse walked up to me all on his own...brought tears to me eyes !!! The trail rides have such variety...open green acres, forested areas, lake side and much more!! The setting of the ranch is unbelieveably beautiful....log cabins on lake front with acres of breathtaking wilderness. The food was delicious!! I enjoyed how we'd all gather after dinner on the front porch of the lodge and chat about how our day went :) In addition there's a games room, sauna, canoeing, boating and camp fires!! The icing on the cake was Debbie...she is so full of life, laughter, wisdom and compassion !! :) This vacation was more then I ever dreamed it would be and I'll be going back for sure !!

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Shelley G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Switzerland
1 review
Reviewed March 11, 2012

First of all: I warmly recommend this unique Ranch! Wonderful owners, great animals, excellent food, brilliant accomodations, breathtaking landscape.... There’s really nothing to criticize!

Last year I planned to make one of my childrens dream come true: a Ranch vacation!
I was looking for a small, familiar Ranch, as close as possible to the „real ranchfeeling“, especially not to touristic, surrounded by a beautiful countryside and of course: excellent for riding acitivies!
While surfing and reading all the Guestranchsites all over Alberta and B.C., (and as you can imagine: there are quite a lot!!) I must confess: I suddenly felt in love with the Freereinguestranch! This Ranch seemed to have all I was looking for!
That’s why I mailed Debbie (the owner) for further information. I became a very pleasent and likeable answer, as we would have been friends for years! And from this moment I realised: This is the ranch to be!!
And yes, it was! October 2011, I spent a wonderful, unforgettable week there – my dream has been fulfilled!

I stayed in mailcontact with Debbie for half-a-year – until I finally arrived at her beautiful ranch. She even helped me plan my trip (I’m from Switzerland and the ranchweek was just one of 4 weeks I stayed in Western Canada). She sent me nice Website-Links, gave me informations about the weatherconditions in the autumn and was very willing to make my trip save and memorable. I travelled alone, so indeed she offered me to send her a final draft of my itinery and my mobile number, so she could check in with me to make sure I’m safe! Brilliant!
As a single traveller this place is just perfect:
Debbie and her lovely parents welcome you as an old friend, giving you the feeling to be a part of the family... Amazing!
Moreover all accomodations are the same price! And because they work on a first book basic, I was allowed to spent the whole week in this very roomy, gorgeous cabin, just in front of the beautiful lake - including the cute beavers ;o)! I can’t remember ever having such a unique accomodation – really!
Like a little peace of heaven....

The horses are all well-trained and very nice! Debbie loves her horses (her „team“ ;o)) , knows them inside out and treats them very well - for me a very important factor!
She makes sure that you threat them well also and that you feel as comfortable as possible with your buddy!
I loved combing and saddeling „my“ spider in the morning while listening to the countrysongs – just feelin like a real cowgirl! Smile....
We spent a lot of hours in the saddle – I was really fond of! The trailraides offered breathtaking views, although sometimes we needed to cross several Logs on the ground. We also did some „ground work“ with our horses and one day Debbie showed me how to ride a barrel race. So as a passionate rider, you’ll have verything the (cowgirl) hearts desires!

The food was excellent – I’ll never forget the cowboystew with it’s special addition in it... hihi...

I absolutely would spend my holidays there again - as soon as possible!
But unfortunately, Switzerland is not just around the corner....

Memories of a lifetime - - - thanks for making them come true, Freereinranch!

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled solo
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Helpful?
Thank Nadja K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Medicine Hat, Canada
1 review
Reviewed January 12, 2012

Special vacations for my granddaughter and I began five years ago and each year, she picks something she would like to do or a place she would like to see and I try to create a memory. Well, I have to say, our Ranch Vacation at Free Rein Guest Ranch created more than enough memories to last a lifetime!
After deciding on a "Ranch Vacation" it took me two years to save up and decide which place would be the best. And we got the very "best" at Free Rein! As soon as we got to the ranch we got such a warm and friendly welcome that it was like a "Welcome Home". We settled into our nice little log cabin and sat out on the front deck looking out over the lake and gazed at the mountains. "This has to be like heaven", my granddaughter said. I agreed whole-heartedly. I felt like we had discovered a "little piece of heaven" too!
There are so many things about our week stay at Free Rein that I would like to tell you about but then again, I could go on forever. The rolling hills, the beautiful lakes, and all those places we explored out on our trail rides ... such breath-taking vistas of beauty to discover!
After a hearty breakfast, we ventured out each day with a horse that we were assigned to. (Debbie always has this knack of picking just the right horse for each person.) We loved our horses! My granddaughter was only 12 years old and had very little experience riding a horse. Having grown up on a ranch, I had lots of experience, but not riding for over twenty years made me a little apprehensive to say the least. We didn't have to worry! Our horses were perfect and the pace was just right. By the time the week was over we could ride all day long! We learned a lot about our horse and the rides were relaxing and yet a exciting new venture every day.
Debbie is just a treasure, and one of those special people you always love to meet. Her Mom Kath and her Dad Findlay were hugable ... and we both just loved the wranglers, Ben and Ronnie. After our week at the ranch was over and it was time to go home, both my granddaughter and I were in tears. We thanked everyone a hundred times and still, it didn't seem to be enough! How can you thank someone for all the special moments we experienced each and every day at the ranch. What can you say about a holiday that is so special that the memories will live on forever in our hearts?
So I decided to write this to "pay it forward" and let others know that they too, can discover a little piece of heaven ..... at the Free Rein Ranch.
Sincerely,
Sheree

Room Tip: Staying at the guest house would be really nice because each room has a beautiful view and the rooms...
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Red R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed January 12, 2012

I found this awesome location quite by chance however a view on the website , had me bowled over. I emailed Debbie and received a warm informative and honest response back very promptly. We kept in contact finalising arrangements etc before I came over.

I did the "so you think you can ranch " which was in late October towards the end of season. They do loads more during the year.

From the moment I got there , I was treated like a favourite friend that had come to vist.

The accommodation was excellent and comfortable slept like a baby.
Food was awesome 3 squares a day, if there wasn't something you didn't quite , it was no problem.

I was matched up with my own horse , these guys know their stuff ! So take the advice to start on shorter rides progressing longer hacks .

Evenings you could do what you wished, but mine were spent over nice glass of red and fantastic conversation. With other guests Deb and the gang.

Once the ride were done , there were a few bits and pieces to do round the ranch , I learnt quite a bit about equine care and took part in this. Learnt about the local environment. I even helped out with one of local ranches in preg testing the cattle.

The cowboy stew was very well received that evening.

Frein reign offers something quite unique , so if your looking for those commercialised impersonal 5 star super luxury jobs then this probably isn't for you.

However if you looking for all the horse riding you can do, a real homely feel, reconnecting to nature and just maybe finding your small measure of peace. Then go for it !

I'll definitely be looking to go back.

This review doesn't really give the credit for great memories belly laughs and experiences I had.

So please get in touch with them.
JD

Defo

  • Stayed October 2011
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Nee-naw-JD
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Free Rein Guest Ranch

Property: Free Rein Guest Ranch
Address: 9550 Eagan Lake Road, Bridge Lake, British Columbia V0K 1E0, Canada
Location: Canada > British Columbia > Bridge Lake
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 9 Specialty Lodging in Bridge Lake
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We are a family owned guest ranch located in the wilderness of the South Cariboo region of British Columbia. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Free Rein Guest Ranch Bridge Lake, Canada - British Columbia

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