Never stayed on a ranch before and it had been my dream to do so. Came with my family who don't (or should i say 'didn't') ride so a little dubious about whether they would enjoy it. I needn't have ever worried. From the minute we arrived, we were made to feel so very welcome by the Rankin family - Amanda & Sara were just delightful and we loved hearing Bill's stories about family life at the ranch and his work on the farm/ with the cattle when he joined us on a few occasions for dinner or after meals.
We just loved the fresh, open air and beautiful countryside, the cabins were spacious and very clean and the whole atmosphere was perfectly relaxed and friendly. My children never asked for ipads/ipods, TVs or a phone once during our stay - a first! For all of us i think the highlight was the riding and the horses though - all very well cared for and even tempered (even my favorite, Lightening!). The wranglers- Kelly and Fernando - took care to understand our needs and experience and match us superbly with the horses. My husband loved Buba and the girls loved every horse they were given - i would have brought Lightening home with me if he'd have fitted in my suitcase! Kelly was so much fun and Fernando showed us many points of interest - both made our riding experiences special. Thanks guys.Oh, i cant forget Rosie (the family dog) - my children certainly never will.
Food is excellent - you wont ever go hungry/ Rudy is a great chef. The children loved Louis, who made mealtimes fun. (Don't forget to take your own alcohol though - keep it in the office fridge) We thought the BBQs in the meadow were just the best thing (especially as luck was on our side for the Horse Shoe competition) and we had great fun during the evening activities/entertainment. My girls even enjoyed the football match in the dark that the new friends had arranged with some of the staff.
The pool was lovely and clean and very welcome after a long, hot ride out. Many friendships were formed during the hours spent in and around the pool.
I could wax lyrical about the Rankin Ranch and Rankin family for a long time, but needless to say, we all loved every minute of our relaxing stay and will certainly look to return as soon as we can.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Quarter Circle U Rankin Ranch is truly a well kept secret, located deep in California's Tehachapi Mountains. It has been a working cattle ranch since the days of the Civil War, and the Rankin family still raises White Face Hereford cattle just as their ancestors did over 150 years ago. Guests travel from across the United States and around the world visit this guest ranch. They enjoy the fact that it is a "real" working ranch, and are fascinated with its century old history. Many guests emphasize the importance of the "family" atmosphere; meeting and visiting with Rankin family members is routine as they all live right on the ranch...4Th, 5th and 6th generations. "Western hospitality" is part of your package! The favorite activity at the ranch has always been the horseback riding. We have both adult and children's rides (riding starts at age six) which explore our meadows, Walker's Basin Creek, and mountain ridges overlooking our beautiful little valley. The guided trail rides are about one hour long and all levels of riders are welcome. Parents and grandparents especially appreciate the supervised children's program for ages 4-11 during Spring Break and the summer months. They enjoy arts and crafts, hikes, and visits to the animal farm. Other ranch activities include swimming, hiking, fishing (trout stocked pond), shuffleboard, ping pong, recreation room and planned evening activities. Adventure West...Kidstuff says, "A full operation cattle ranch, Rankin offers a fun filled, down home kind of vacation, complete with tradition, history and diversions for both young and old." ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Rankin Ranch Hotel Caliente
- Rankin Ranch California/Caliente