Howdy, partner! Dude ranches (also known as "Guest Ranches") specialize in providing an authentic Western experience for their guests. These ranches range from working ranches that take in only a few guests per year to "ranch-style" resorts that attract thousands of visitors per season - though they still have all the horses and cows you could shake a stick at!
Be sure to practice your John Wayne walk before working at a dude ranch.
Dude ranches are known for accepting telephone interviews and for hiring people from all over the country. Unless you have riding experience, you shouldn't count on being a full-time wrangler your first summer. Most people are hired for the many hotel, restaurant, or assistant wrangler positions first, and then move up to full-time wrangler or trail guide after gaining experience. One big plus of dude ranch employment is that many of these employers are quite small, and there is often a great deal of variety in the jobs you do each day. So you could be making breakfast one minute and organizing a hike the next!
What's it like working on a dude ranch? Expect an activity-filled day that doesn't follow a strict 9 to 5 schedule, with lots of interaction with guests and other employees. Ranches usually organize evening activities for guests, and employees are usually expected to participate.
Virtually all guest ranches provide free food and lodging, and housing arrangements may vary from dorm-style bunkhouses to rustic cabins. Since even the largest guest ranches hire fewer than 100 employees per year, a friendly atmosphere is the norm and workers often make friends that last a lifetime. Employee satisfaction rates also tend to be quite high, with as many as 50% of seasonal workers returning for more than one season with some employers.
Some guest ranches also operate year-round, especially if a ski area is nearby. Check out the employer profiles in the Member Area for more details!
Sample Employer - Below is a real employer taken directly from our database. In the Member Area, you could add the employer to your favorites list or apply immediately online.
Furnace Creek Inn and Ranch Resort
P.O. BOX 187
Death Valley, CA 92328
Phone: (760) 786-2311
Furnace Creek Inn and Ranch Resort is located in the heart of Death Valley National Park. Employees have the opportunity to work in the middle of nature while enjoying on-site recreation such as swimming, tennis, golf, and horseback riding. Death Valley is one of the nation's most popular historical sites, especially for summer trips, and has more than it's share of old mines and ghost towns to explore.
|Hospitality, retail, maintenance, golf course, clerical, and restaurant staff.
|Food and Lodging:
|Low cost housing and food provided; free utilities and laundry facilities.
|Free use of swimming pools, tennis courts, and golf courses as well as employee weight room, and a 20% discount at area stores, restaurants, and Amfac resort rooms.
|Visit their web site or start the application process now at A+ Summer Jobs.
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