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“Amazing family vacation”

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Covered Wagon Ranch
Certificate of Excellence
Setauket, New York
Level 4 Contributor
26 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Amazing family vacation”
Reviewed September 7, 2012

As I read the other reviews there is nothing I can do but agree whole-heartedly. This is truly a special place. We picked Covered Wagon because it seemed like we would be able to spend more time with our kids and not separated into child and adult rides and that is what we got and so much more. The cabins were immacualate and comfortable, the staff warm and welcoming from beginning to end, the horses well cared for and amazing, the food fantastic. Kurt and Melissa are terrific and from beginning to end we heard, its your vacation what would you like to do. What a wonderful attitude. We were travelling with our 13 and 15 year old children who both loved the experience. We left the ranch and spent the next 5 days doing exciting things in Jackson Wy but at the end of the trip each of us thought our stay at Covered Wagon was the highlight of our trip. It's not one thing about the ranch that is special. Its everything, from the minute you arrive until the moment you sadly drive out of the gate you feel like part of a special extended family. We will definitely go back and would recommend the experience to everyone, especially if you are travelling with teens and looking for a way to do something as a family. One more thing, the pictures I have added and that I have seen, simply do not convey the atmosphere at the ranch. It is really comfortable and quaint. Absolutely a wonderful place.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Beth J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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241 reviews from our community

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English first
Minneapolis, Minnesota
1 review
Reviewed August 28, 2012

We were looking for a Western riding experience, along with some whitewater rafting and a tour of Yellowstone. Thanks to Kurt and Melissa we were able to accomplish all of this on a five day trip and not feel at all stressed about it. Their recommendations for guides were spot on and they were happy to make our reservations for us. None of us had any real riding experience, including our 8 and 11 year-old boys, but the horses they put us on were perfect and we had great trail riding experiences. Our younger boy especially enjoyed playing with the cats and dogs that live at the ranch. The cabins are very clean and the food excellent. Great overall experience!

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank B_L228
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
US
1 review
Reviewed August 26, 2012

Our family just returned from a trip to Montana and Wyoming, which started with five days at Covered Wagon. We are riding novices. We chose Covered Wagon because we wanted a personalized experience in a small ranch. We were very happy with the results, and our 8-year old (who had not ridden a horse before) loved both the trails and the chores after the rides. The horses were a good match for us. We also enjoyed meeting other families as well; our daughter had playmates during our entire stay.

Kurt and Melissa, as well as all the wranglers and staff, were welcoming, helpful, and knowledgeable. We would definitely recommend Covered Wagon!

Ian

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Ian_J_US
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed August 26, 2012 via mobile

We stayed at CWR as part of a 3 week road trip that included stops in Yellowstone and Sun Valley. When I booked our stay, I must admit, I was slightly skeptical of the huge number of 5 star reviews. As I write this review now, I'm happy to say we have our reservations booked for next year already! The place is amazing!

Not knowing what to expect, we stayed 3 nights at the ranch and I would definitely recommend a longer stay- and indeed, for our next visit, we'll be staying for 6.

The ranch itself is gorgeous in a rustic, authentic way. Guests stay in small cabins and you eat meals communally in the main lodge/dining hall. The cabins are nothing "fancy" but it only increases their charm. They are immaculately clean and well appointed- with cozy linens, thoughtful touches like water bottles and fire starter for your cabins wood burning stove!

The meals are a highlight of the experience- breakfast and dinner are served in the lodge and the food is truly wonderful- everything made in-house and freshly prepared. During our stay we had roast turkey with all the trimmings one evening, plank salmon another, and incredible ribs on the third! The service in the dining room (and everywhere else) is incredibly friendly yet very professional and competent. I travel a lot for both work and fun, and have stayed all over the world- and I can say without exaggeration that the ranch had the most outstanding staff and service that I have ever experienced. Warm, friendly, genuine- they make you feel like a guest in their home!

The riding is amazing and there is something for all levels. My husband and I are horse lovers but in the beginner/intermediate range skills-wise. They never made us feel like we should know more or were impatient with our abilities. During our stay, I observed riders from flat beginner to lifelong horse owner/riders and they ensured everyone had the right amount of variety and challenge to suit their tastes. On top of all that, we have twin 4 1/2 year old girls- and the staff saddled horses and lead them on rides around the ranch everyday (under 6 can't go on trails). They "taught" them basic skills and were so patient and sweet with them. The girls came home with their hearts stolen by the wranglers and the horses!

Finally, Kurt, Melissa, the wranglers, and the house staff (yep, that's everyone), were wonderful! We couldn't have had a better experience. One small thing to keep in mind- the horses (deservedly) rest on Sundays, so no riding- there's TONS of other things to do, but if you are just staying just a few nights and really want to ride, you may want to keep that in mind.

Can't wait to get back there next year!

Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
Helpful?
Thank Jennie L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Doylestown, Pa
Level 4 Contributor
27 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed August 23, 2012

We rarely make plans to revisit a destination but we returned to Covered Wagon Ranch for a 2nd time. We were just as impressed this summer as last summer. Debi & JT make you feel like party of the "family". The cabins are amazing! Super comfortable, the food is delicious. But probably the best part, the great wranglers. Jake, Brian and Mariah were great to ride with, friendly, knowledgeable about the area, great to ride with. Took us on awesome rides. We stayed 3 nights and the last night of our stay was the cookout with the wranglers, JT & Debi and guitarist.
Definitely one of our favorite places! Very relaxing, takes the stress away. We will return!!

Room Tip: No tip needed. All the cabins are super cozy and comfortable with their own front porch and rocking...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank corgikids
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Virginia
Level 6 Contributor
155 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 101 helpful votes
Reviewed August 21, 2012

Absolutely the best--AGAIN! This is our 9th year at Dude Ranches and the 4th to CWR. We LOVE the people, the place, the horses, the overall location, and the weather. The overall experience is nothing short of total relaxation and is therapeutic. We went on new trails and saw a number of wild animals as we do every year. It takes a special type of person to keep this very high standard up and the owners and managers do this every year. Just wonderful!

Room Tip: You can e-mail me and I will respond to your questions.
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Zoomer2You
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Hampshire
Level 3 Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed August 13, 2012

Well it's been 7 years in a row now and every year they found new trails that I have never been on before. The food is great and different every night. The cabins feel like home now :) The horses are great. The wranglers are lots of fun and they tend to stay a few years which is great!
Kurt the Ranch Manager is outstanding and Debi and JT the owners are just great people and really care about the ranch. Great place to just relax and ride horses like a real dude ranch should be. No regimented schedule they cater your expereince to exatctly what you want to do. You don't have to know how to ride to have a great time, like I said the horses are great for beginers or expereinced riders. I have my own horse at home, so I know well cared for horses when I see them! If you looking for a "Authentic" dude ranch experience this is where you should go!

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled solo
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Helpful?
2 Thank HorseguyNewHampshire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Covered Wagon Ranch

Property: Covered Wagon Ranch
Address: 34035 Gallatin Road, Gallatin Gateway, Big Sky, MT 59730
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Montana > Big Sky > Gallatin Gateway
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 5 Specialty Lodging in Gallatin Gateway
Number of rooms: 24
Also Known As:
Covered Wagon Ranch Hotel Gallatin Gateway
Covered Wagon Ranch Montana/Gallatin Gateway

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