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“The genuine ranch experience”

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Free Rein Guest Ranch
carterton, uk
Level Contributor
26 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“The genuine ranch experience”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 3, 2013 via mobile

I stayed here for five nights with my husband and son in a lakeside cabin. Within an hour of arrival we felt as if we had known Debbie and her family forever- they could not have been more friendly, welcoming and genuine . We had never ridden a horse before but soon felt at ease in the saddle of our gentle giants. The setting is fantastic with amazing scenery , we even got to go to the local annual rodeo with Debbie and Sally and had a fantastic day. I cannot find fault at all, it was our best ever trip to date . We alwAys try to go somewhere different each holiday, but this was so amazing and the whole ranch family so warm and genuine that we are determined to visit again . I almost didn't write a review so that I could keep it to myself !!!!

  • Stayed June 2012
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Helpful?
Thank Julie W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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117 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (26)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Mount Barker, Australia
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 4, 2012

My partner and I stayed at Free Rein Ranch for four nights during a six week holiday and out of all of the places we visited, and all of the people we met along the way - we will forever remember Free Rein as one of the best experiences we had with the some of the best people that we met.

The log cabin we stayed in, which was right on the edge of the lake was fantastic - we felt as though we had left the 'real world' behind us and it was a great feeling. The food we were served was delicious! We even saw a beaver while canoeing on the lake. But the real highlight was the riding. We rode as much as our butts would allow us and went out with either Debbie or Tim each day - and had a wonderful time following trails winding through the forest, over hills and past lakes. It even snowed one day! Our horses, Cookie and Casper, were just fantastic - they both had distinct personalities, were very well looked after and were well matched to us as riders. The surroundings are just stunning, Debbie and her parents are very lucky to have such a beautiful backyard.

We have already decided that we will be back one day (and hopefully for a bit longer) as we just had the best time, I really want to thank Debbie, Kath and Finlay (and Vinnie the dog!) for an amazing holiday and memories that we will treasure always.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Nadia B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Vancouver, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 24, 2012

What a great short vacation time we had at the Free Rein Guest Ranch, my husband and I.
We felt far away disconnected from the big city, riding on our own horse for the duration of the stay.
We stayed in a great log cabin with a very cute bedroom on the mezzanine. The cottage was fronting a small lake that we had the chance to explore by canoe, making us see the extensive work of the beavers, emblem of our country.
The horseback riding part was astonishing for the great and well maintained place. Horses are healthy, trails are spectacular as the scenery goes with, food was generous and earthy and ambiance everywhere was friendly and cozy. Everything was meticulously clean, even in the barn! Thank you to Debbie, a true sweet heart, and a very good teacher for showing how to ride and more how to communicate with your horse, how to establish respect with your horse. She is a true teacher, a solid psychologist and a behavioural master. I was impressed by the whole thing. Thank you to her staff including her precious parents, very nice people that you feel like hugging your own parents when you have to leave. (Because you don't want to leave!)
This is certainly a place I would recommend to any one. For a family, or bunch of friends reunion even for honeymooners who look for a true farwest experience, the Free Rein Guest Ranch is certainly a place to discover. If you come from far, stay at least 3 nights to be able to enjoy the true feeling of what it is to be a cowboy or a cowgirl. I will definitely go back there and recommend the place to my best friends from all around the world.
Diane

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank jollytraveller2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Potters Bar
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 21, 2012

WE have just got back from a trip to Canada, and spent 6 nights at the ranch, what a great experience! Luxury accommodation, great hosts, good food, riding and all served with a great big smile by Debs, her Mum and Dad, and Tim. The views are amazing! We rode to top of hills and the colours of the trees (we were there during their Fall) were spectacular. Although we did not see any bears etc., Debbie did point out the proof of their existence! The horses are well cared for and we were shown how to tack up and ride Western style.
This is one place i will return to!

Room Tip: We had a room inside the Lodge itself, it was warm, good views, the water is sooo soft! Lovely show...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank JunePottersBar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 19, 2012

Free Rein takes horse back riding up a notch in that you are truly the one responsible for your horse. Grooming, saddling, and all of the other jobs related to your riding experience are included here and I really loved that! Accomodation was lovely and hospitality fantastic. Beautiful scenery and endless trails. Very special attention to my kids too which was absolutely amazing. They (and we) learned so much and had so much fun. Debbie and her family and crew are fantastic hosts.

Room Tip: Cabins have a lovely lake view from the balcony and offer privacy. Rooms in the lodge are convenient...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank lovetoride100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ripon, North Yorks, England
Level Contributor
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 26, 2012

Returning back to the UK from 2 weeks in Canada I was posed the question on numerous occasions by friends and family "what was it like"... my reply on each occasion was "EPIC!"
My family and I spent a week of our fortnight holiday at Free Rein Guest Ranch and safe to say it was the most amazing holiday we've ever had.
The last time I'd ridden a horse would be over 20 years ago so I was slightly apprehensive about the thought of a week of trail riding round beautiful British Columbia. From the outset Debbie, her family and the ranch hands put us all at ease. Initially we were asked to select a horse or should I say have a horse select us and bond with them.
Don't expect to just jump straight on to your horse and head off for the hills! Do expect brilliant tuition on grooming, saddling, handling and riding your steed. They were especially attentive with my 6 year old son who had no experience of horses and who seemed to take to it like a duck to water! Once the confidence levels are up it's time to hit the trails. What an amazing experience trailing through forests and valleys on horseback. Spotting all manner of wildlife from Bears, Moose, Elk, Deer, Eagles, Hawks, Crane, to name but a few... I could waffle on describing in detail the awesome panoramic views we saw but my description just wouldn't do them justice, as they need to be seen in person.
Returning from trail rides there's all manner of things to do on the ranch, take a canoe or kayak out on the lake - My brother and I went for a paddle at dusk and sat at one of the three beaver lodges. Sure enough 10 minutes later we were less than 10m away from two beavers. Paddling back we also spotted a moose on the edge of the lake. There's also Mountain Bikes to take out for a ride, BBQ's and campfires evenings, you can stay out in a Tepee overnight, or just kick back with a couple of beers in the games room and discuss the day's events. During our stay we also had a day trip white-water rafting and a trip to Barriere Rodeo all organised by Debbie. Another thing to mention is that the food at the ranch was top notch and there was plenty of it. The accommodation was immaculately presented, clean and really comfortable. Which just rounded off one of the most amazing, fun, action packed and relaxed times of our lives!
BIG BIG BIG thanks to Debbie, her folks and the staff!!
It's not a question of would I go back.... it's when I go back.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank SamuelRowe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Victoria, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 13, 2012

Free Rein Guest Ranch Sept. 4-10/2012. The best 6 days in a loooooong time ! Great home cooked meals from mama Kath , entertaining conversations with Finlay ( such an accent !),genuine hospitality ,clean super comfortable rooms - my bed was the best ever !!! and the trails were numerous , easy or challenging ,in the beautiful Caribou country. I especially liked how Debbie was so willing to share her knowledge about horses. She is some kind of "horse whisperer"... I learned so much valuable insights on how to be around horses and develop a bond with them.I really liked the hands on approach with caring for Cookie, the horse I was matched with. I felt like I was part of a team and not just a customer. LOVED THAT !!!! Her horses are fabulous- well cared for ,calm, happy... they know they have a good thing going on at the Free Rein Ranch... such characters...like the whole darn family.! Am I going back? DANG TOOTIN' !!!!!!! Dianne Fielding

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled solo
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Helpful?
1 Thank dianne f
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 11 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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