My wife and I stayed 3 nights at the West Pawnee Ranch while getting to know the birds and landscape of the Pawnee National Grassland. We were delighted with the experience.
We stayed in the Prairie House, a 2-room freestanding unit that is near the main ranch house of this large cattle ranch. Our hosts Paul and Louanne Timm and their family are wonderful people who have been ranching in this area for a long time. It is a blessing that they offer this lodging opportunity, because other accommodations in this area appear to be quite limited. Another blessing is that they offer the option of having dinner with them as well as breakfast. The meals were always ample and delicious, and mealtime conversations with them were a highlight of our stay.
Our rooms in the Prairie House were spacious, comfortable, and nicely decorated. The view out over the prairie fields to the Chalk Cliffs and the distant Rocky Mountains was very pleasant. it would be difficult to find a more tranquil setting.
The location was perfect for our needs as birders. There was considerable bird activity on the ranch itself and the bird tour driving route designated by the Pawnee National Grassland was not far away. It was also an easy drive to the Pawnee Buttes and the Crow Valley Recreation Area, where we found other birds. We are glad that we took the optional bird outing offered by Paul, because he helped us find some species that we might have missed on our own.
For us Easterners, this was our first experience in the shortgrass prairie habitat. We could not have asked for a better introduction.