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“Montana Mountain Majesty”
Review of Alta Ranch

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Alta Ranch
Reviewed December 9, 2013

Me and my buddies love fly fishing in Montana and have found the Bitterroot along with its East and West Forks are devoid of crowds with great fishing for wild cutthroat trout. Alta Ranch was recommended to us by Chuck Stranahan who owns a Fly Shop by the same name in Hamilton, MT. This was our second trip to fish the Bitterroot and we wanted a nice place in the mountains where we could enjoy the scenery and wildlife plus do some small stream fly fishing right out the front door. We were very please with our choice of Alta Ranch and highly recommend it to anyone who wants a comfortable mountain get-away. Peter & Katrin Spinetta are excellent hosts and were available to provide information for all activities in the area. They invited us to use their Wi-Fi access at their home which sits right on the streamside. We sat on the deck overlooking the stream and they came out with soft drinks and beers! We stayed in the Cottonwood Cabin and it was very comfortable for six guys. We fixed breakfast each morning and dinner on the grill outside. Fishing on the property is excellent with dry flies and droppers. Lots of very nice fish in were caught in the 8 to 17 inch range with the average fish being around 12 inches. There's plenty of stream to fish for several days as you can walk the stream as far as you like in Montana as long as you don't get out of the high water mark.

Room Tip: Cottonwood cabin is very secluded and has washer/dryer.
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  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank fckirk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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6 - 9 of 9 reviews

Reviewed July 8, 2013

We have been to Alta Ranch every year for about the last 8 years. It feels like home. The physical beauty of this property defies words. When we left recently, I was awakened at dawn by a herd of elk passing beneath our cabin window, whistling and bugling. We fly-fish and so we spend most of our time on the river--both on and off the ranch--and so cannot speak to the many hiking opportunities nearby. There's internet access across the street from the ranch, but no tv in the cabins. (At least not the cabin where we stay). Alta is a cross between a ranch and a state park. The Spinettas are conservationists and we are grateful for their careful stewardship of this special place. Being there is a peaceful, aesthetic experience.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank SusanRC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 19, 2013

The Alta Ranch could not be better! My family and I love it so much that we go back for two week EVERY SUMMER and WINTER! The owners Katrin and Peter Spinetta are really very nice. Sometimes we see their family come from all over the united states for a family get-together, also both summer and winter. The Alta Ranch is in a perfect location. There are many hiking trails around. There is a big lake for swimming, boating (Yes, there is a boating ramp), water skiing and there is a little beach area! You can do horse back riding through the meadow or up into the mountains. Not far away is the cute little town of Darby! Any one who is near the area should go to the Darby candy store! My whole family (Including my self) loves it! White water rafting is also a very fun experience and has my family hooked. In the winter there is a pond on the property that completely freezes over! We use that for ice skating. In the summer there we use it for fishing! Yes, it may be a catch and release pond, but the is a river next to it that has amazing fishing. Also, many kinds enjoy rafting down the river on boogie boards in wet-suites if it is a little bit cold out. The alta ranch is amazing!

Room Tip: You ca call the owners to see what cabin would fit you and your family the best
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  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank lou S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 2, 2012

We went here just for a short weekend getaway in the end of May. We were coming from 80+ degree weather, and were so excited when we found ourselves driving through a snow storm in the mountains just minutes away from the ranch! The cabins are so cozy! Cozy as in warm and welcoming, not tiny by any means. The owners are so friendly and are willing to give any advice on things to do and will also help you set up outings like horseback riding, etc. We stayed in the Moose Crossing Cabin, which had 2 bedrooms, a good sized bathroom, and a kitchen/living room combination. It would easily fit 4 people, plus more if people were willing to sleep in the living room area. The pellet stove was great and there was electric heat to help out if necessary, but we found that we really didn't need that. There was a welcome basket with snacks for hikes and a bottle of wine for when we got back in the evening. There were tons of games and books to read, and for those who just can't be without internet there is wireless internet access in the community building. We had a great big porch out front with hummingbird feeders (I loved watching them in the mornings during breakfast), and there were comfy chairs to sit in (which we would have used if it hadn't been so cold outside!). We saw a whole bunch of wildlife, including elk and a moose. Plus, the view of the mountains is really amazing. Our cabin even had a little enclosure for horses if you want to bring your own with you!

I highly recommend taking a little trip into the town (about 30 minutes away) just to look around, especially in the little antique shop they've got there. There are also tons of nature preserves in the area, good for a day trip or two.

Best of all, there is absolutely no cell phone service there. If you want to make a call, you have no choice but to use the land line! This was a great way to force ourselves away from technology for the weekend. We really loved this trip and were very sad for it to end!

Room Tip: If you are just a couple, the two smaller cabins will have plenty of room for you. Even small famil...
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  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank SarahB0Barah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Alta Ranch

Address: 9203 W Fork Rd, Darby, MT 59829-8617
Location: United States > Montana > Darby
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 9 Specialty Lodging in Darby
Number of rooms: 5
Also Known As:
Alta Ranch Montana/Darby

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