Preparing and packing for your vacation

Since nights can get down around 40 degrees, you will need jeans, sweaters, sweat shirts, or hoodies, and a light to medium -weight jacket. On the other extreme, days will normally be between 75 - 85 degrees so don't forget your swimsuits, short sleeved shirts, shorts and tennis shoes. You might like to know that we have a "fancy dinner" for adults during the week. Casual dress is fine, but if you'd like to show off some of your fancy western clothes, you are more than welcome to do so. We also have a dance night if you want to bring fun clothes for that, although again, regular ranch clothes are just fine.

Hikers will need to bring good hiking shoes.

The weather can change rapidly at 9000+ feet in the Rocky Mountains, and rain and thunderstorms are common. We do provide riding raingear, although you may want to bring your own ponchos for hiking or other non-horseback outdoor activities.

Please note that for years we have worn pink on Fridays in support of the fight against cancer. You might want to pack some pink clothing with this in mind, or we do have some pink items for sale in the Trading Post. Of course, it is completely up to you, but guests have commented over the years that they would like to have known in advance.

Other items that will be useful: suntan lotion or sun screen, cowboy hat or baseball cap, bug spray, chap stick, and a canteen or water bottle. We stock these and other basic items such as candy bars, pop, t-shirts and a supply of fishing equipment. Many of our guests fly to Albuquerque or Colorado Springs and thus are able to bring only a limited amount of luggage. We do supply basic toiletries, but of course you are welcome to bring your own if you prefer.

In an effort to leave a greener footprint we have completely cut down on the use of plastic bottles, therefore we ask you to bring your own water bottles for riding. Please keep in mind that they must be 24 ozs or less and no more than 3 inches in diameter/10 inches in circumference (Nalgenes and similar don't work as they are too wide for the water bottle holders on our saddles). Please note that we do have steel water bottles for sale in the Trading Post.

**Scroll all the way down for Quick Look Packing List**

If you would like to ship anything to the ranch, our physical address is: Rainbow Trout Ranch, 1484 FDR 250, Antonito, CO 81120. Be sure to put your name on your box and to allow plenty of time for arrival. Your boxes will be on your cabin porch when you arrive. Keep in mind that FedEx delivery/pickup is very limited here so UPS is a better shipping option.

Our lodge, dining room, and cabins are designated as non-smoking. We only allow smoking on the porches where ashtrays are provided.

Those who plan to ride should bring slip on boots with a heel. We do have a “boot box” at the ranch and you are welcome to borrow a pair should you find a good fit. And you might consider long socks for wearing with boots to prevent rubbing. You may also want to bring long-sleeved shirts for riding and some people do bring chaps although they are not necessary. Many people do some riding or take lessons before coming to the ranch - this is a benefit but certainly not a must as we provide excellent instruction. Your pleasure and safety on horseback will be enhanced if you are in good physical condition. The risk of accident increases considerably if you are in poor physical condition or are overweight. Please see our Eligibility criteria for more information.

Please note that your arrival here at the ranch should be after 3:30pm on Sunday, but before dinner at 6:30pm. On Sunday evenings we have a general Orientation after dinner where you will have an opportunity to meet the other guests, some staff, plus the Van Berkum family and Tim and Ms. Meg, and we will discuss our weekly activities and answer questions. In the summer family weeks, you will also meet the kids’ and teen counselors. You really don’t want to miss the Orientation!

Departure time is 9:00am the following Saturday. We are unable to give credit for late arrival, early departure, or for meals or activities missed.

Final payment to the ranch is due by departure day and we accept all major credit cards

Extras that you might want to prepare for: 4.9% Colorado state tax on your total bill, $10 per person country lodging tax, fishing licenses for anyone sixteen or older who chooses to fish, trading post purchase, optional .3% for the Dude Ranch Foundation, BYOB, and the optional staff gratuity.

Quick Look Packing List – be sure to read preceding information


Best Dude Ranches - Authentic Western Adventures
Dude Ranchers' Association
Dude Ranch.com
Dude Ranch.com - Signature Ranch
True West - Best West
Dude Ranch Foundation
Horse Safety Program - Dude Ranch Foundation
Certified Colorado Member Ranch
Cowboy Boots