Posts Tagged ‘employment’

Survival of the Fittest

June 3rd, 2015 by Amy Worster


Gros Ventre Slide seen from Shadow Mtn.

On June 23, 1925, a landslide on Sheep Mountain dammed up the Gros Ventre River with a high tower of rocks and dirt. Lower Slide Lake was born in the following flooding, only six miles from the town of Kelly, Wyoming. Over the next two years, the lake filled in, and the nature-made dam held. But in May of 1927, just before a huge election between Kelly and Jackson, a portion of the dam broke. The town of Kelly—which was favored to win—suddenly found itself under six feet of water, at least temporarily, and Jackson “won by a landslide.”

When you drive by Slide Lake, the scar of earth is still apparent on the mountain; an ugly welt of naked dirt among a landscape of crisp green pines. At the edge of the road above the lake you can see the gravel and rocks that were pushed as far as they would go and then abandoned, broken and forgotten about. Long-dead trees stand in solidarity near the center of the lake, barren and eerie but still very much present. There were things interrupted here, and the land can’t forget it yet.

Coming to Goosewing Ranch, I didn’t know what to expect. I wanted to fall in love with the area, but I wasn’t sure if it was possible. I dreamed of being so happy here that I would stay, and that has a lot to do with where my life is headed: straight into a tunnel of Unknown, where thinking of my future is exactly like being caught in a landslide. When I got here, it almost felt like this was life pushing the pause button. Work here… and then what?

There is a group of trees at the base of Sheep Mountain that were not always there. Their place of origin was at the top of the mountain. When the landslide happened, the trees went with it. But instead of dying, uprooted, they replanted themselves. And we’re not talking a few trees, but a square mile of them. They found a safe place and stuck with it. The trees you can see today are the same ones from 1925, and that says something about these trees’ commitment to existence.

That’s the thing about sliding down a mountainside, or flying across the country to live in a new place: it’s foreign, it’s terrifying, but it’s most definitely survivable. And maybe it’s better than where we started, even if we don’t know how long this haven is going to last.


This is Sara Massery’s first season at Goosewing Ranch, where she is the Office Assistant. She hails from Pittsfield, Massachusetts, and has just completed her B.A. in English Writing and Literature at Emmanuel College. She’s very excited for the summer ahead!

The Beginning of a Journey

May 26th, 2015 by Amy Worster

sara at yellowstoneI graduated from college on May 9th, and six days later I was on a plane headed to Jackson Hole, Wyoming. The time I spent in the airport—a total of about four hours across two layovers—didn’t feel real, and my impending adventure was suspended above my head. I had flown alone before to visit family, and this didn’t feel any different. When the plane touched down in Jackson—that was when it hit me: I was in for one unique summer. I walked off the ramp and almost stopped short.

Growing up in the western part of Massachusetts, I was used to the way the mountains encircled the town. We were in the foothills of the Appalachians, after all, and I liked their rounded tops and the way they protected my town from bad weather. These were different. These mountains were so sharp they could cut the sky if it got too close. Home, spring was in full bloom. Here, the air was crisp and light and there was still snow on the mountaintops.

On the day I arrived, the trees clung to the fog. The tops of the mountains were obscured by fat clouds that yearned to touch the ground. We passed Slide Lake and the Grey Hills, and around every corner I kept wondering, how close are we?

I know the distance of forty miles. On a highway, it would take less than forty-five minutes to drive. I thought the wilderness of the Gros Ventre River Valley and the Grand Teton National Park might be exaggerated, but nothing could have prepared me for the trek to Goosewing Ranch. The road passes the small town of Kelly and climbs upwards into the park. From there, it could be equated to a mild roller coaster ride. Sometimes you can see the road extend into the distance for a mile; other times you might question if it even continues after this hill; it is always winding and twisting. And my perception of forty miles changed—it took nearly an hour and a half to drive that distance here. Finally, there it was: the ranch spread out in front of us, as glorious (even in the rain) as the pictures that I had pored over during the previous months.

I wake up each morning excited for the day ahead, for the work we’re doing to make this ranch the best it can be for our guests. I am nearly bursting with excitement waiting for the guests to arrive, because they’ll make my new home come alive with activity. I’ve been here for almost a week, which is the same amount of time most of our guests will be here, and I know that’s not enough for me; I’m not done with this place yet. And I can bet you will feel the same.



This is Sara Massery’s first season at Goosewing Ranch, where she is the Office Assistant. She hails from Pittsfield, Massachusetts, and has just completed her B.A. in English Writing and Literature at Emmanuel College. She’s very excited for the summer ahead!

Jackson Hole Guest Ranch Bound…

November 7th, 2012 by Amy

Jackson Hole here I come!

I recently received an offer from Goosewing Ranch to join their team for the 2013 summer season.  It is a herd of horses, pack of dogs, flock of sheep but what do you call a bunch of cowboys and cowgirls-Wranglers, and wranglers are what we are!

It is my pre-conceived idea that Wranglers grew up riding horses, and dreaming of being a cowboy on a dude or cattle ranch.  Why would anyone want to do anything else?  However, life didn’t lead me down the road to the West, only in my thoughts.  Marriage, corporate life, and children temporarily changed my focus.  However, I always kept a horse and stayed active in a few events when the kids didn’t have something going on.

As the kids grew, I at least got to enjoy a Western life style.  They competed in youth, high school, college and pro rodeos.  Barrel racers, goats, breakaway and the boys rode bulls.   Kept putting them on horses but they liked riding bulls.  As a family we traveled and made wonderful, long-lasting friendships and memories.  But there was always a part of me that wanted to be the one on the horse, not the spectator, cheerleader, chauffeur or rodeo secretary.  When my daughter headed off to college she took my barrel horse to compete in college rodeo.  That was about twelve years ago and I’m still waiting to get the horse back!

Now, the kids are grown; independent, hard workers with families and careers of their own; spread all over the country.  For me, retirement is fast approaching.  To supplement my income I could work part-time in the office that is so familiar.  Then out of the blue, the idea to follow my own dreams, try to recapture fantasies of riding the range alongside people with the same interest.   So I took a leap of faith and started applying, Wrangler, cook, housekeeper, just give me a chance.  Goosewing Ranch is giving me that chance and I could not be more excited.  The opportunity to work at the ranch will fulfill a lot of my bucket list goals but it has given me a lot more to add.  Guest Ranches have opportunities to employee all types of individuals, old, young, experienced horseman/women, cooks, novice horseman and more, just apply and find the dream job you have been waiting for.  Jackson Hole is an area that is full of adventures just waiting to take place with both Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks in the local area.

To my surprise/delight, I have actually had a couple of ranches contact me but none compare to Goosewing.  Reviewing videos, talking to the manager, looking at the history, I feel privileged to have the opportunity to be a part of this quality outfit.   Friendliness, caring and a genuine commitment to the guests, show in the comments from visitors and staff.   I look forward to sharing experiences, the beauty of the location, friendships and being a part of fulfilling not only my dreams but those of the guest.

Now the down side!  I’ve got to get in shape, lose some weight so I don’t look like I am scaling Everest getting on my horse.  Besides my daily job, I run a stable of 12 horses, which require attention before and after work.  So even though I am in pretty good shape, a little more preparation won’t hurt.  Read up on the history of the country, the native plants and wildlife.  Get my first aid and CPR certification.  Like I said, my bucket list just keeps growing with more challenging and exciting adventures.  Looking forward to my Wyoming Guest Ranch experience.

You can apply at or email or call 1-888-733-5251.  Join the Goosewing Ranch team and ride for the brand!


What happens on the ranch stays on the ranch…

March 6th, 2012 by Amy

OutlawsWell… what happened on a Jackson Hole ranch used to stay on the ranch, until the technology era took over. Now we get to share all of the Wild West stories with the world! We hope that all of our guests and employees have a positive experience while at the ranch…some just at the expensive of others. I hope you enjoy these fun tails, and remember cowboys and cowgirls are known for their story telling and fun antics.

As a wrangler the worst thing that could happen is to lose your horse. I not only lost my horse, I lost my very own personal horse that I have had since she was a baby. The situation is funny now, but at the time it was a bit intense. We were trying to make our way down one of the Gros Ventre mountains when a hail and lightning storm came out of nowhere. I was helping a lady dismount when her horse reared, and came down on my foot. I got the lady safely to the ground but had lost hold of my horse, Sheila. Sheila was standing there nicely when another guest ran up to grab her. She spooked and ran about 150 yards. Once everyone was safe and wearing their slickers I went to get her. The same guest ran up behind me asking to help, Sheila took one look at him and bolted again. I whistled to her, she turned, looked at me, and as to say sorry but I am going home, she bolted again. There I was left with a group of people, all on horses, and looking to me to lead them home in this storm. Faced with no slicker, no mount, and a long walk home… I did what any good wrangler would do… I knocked the closest person to me off their horse, and left them all out there to fend for themselves. No, I am just kidding… I tried to hide my embarrassment and bruised pride, and got them all back in line and started back down the trail, on foot, this is what we call hoof’ in it. Six miles into our seven mile trek home, another wrangler shows up to check on us, and rub some salt in my wounds. I sent this wrangler back to the ranch, because I was bound and determined to complete this ride/hike on my own. After arriving back at the ranch, I found my horse standing there. Now soaking wet, I untied my slicker from my saddle that my oh-so trusty mount took with her, and tried to pretend nothing happened. If you didn’t know, wet wrangler jeans, cowboy boots, and hiking just don’t mix. I received a lot of guff from my fellow wranglers, and had to by the bunk house beer for a week.

Another fun story involves a couple of our young buckaroos on the ranch. It was a warm summer day when a brother, and his sister were trying to work together and navigate their way across the Goosewing Ranch pond, when a WYOMING beaver popped up. The children were so excited they both leaned to the same side of the canoe. The canoe flips, and dumps them both into the water. The brother thinks it is funny and is horsing around out there teasing his sister, while his little sister is screaming that the beaver is going to eat them. Though this is funny, it gets better when hours later, after a shower, and awaiting dinner, the little sister lures her brother out by the pond to see if they can catch a glimpse of the beaver, this time from dry land. She gets him to the edge of the water, and points across the pond, just as he leans toward the pond she shoves him with all her might. He loses his balance, and falls head first into the mucky water. It wasn’t as fun for him this go around, now that he is wearing his last set of dry clean clothes, but his little sister couldn’t get enough!

There are many more fun stories to tell, from wranglers playing tricks with your tack, to waitresses hiding the housekeepers’ golf-cart. We would love to hear your Goosewing Ranch story, send it to us for a chance to win a “What Happens on the Ranch” t-shirt!


Come share this corner of North America’s wildest country with us! At Goosewing Ranch, we combine the Wyoming wilderness ranching lifestyle with many of the modern refinements in life. It’s sure to be an amazing, memorable “Dude Ranch” vacation here in amazing Jackson Hole!

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“As the gateway to the Yellowstone and Grand Teton Parks, Jackson Hole, Wyoming, is the epicenter of guest-ranch vacationing in North America. If one acknowledges that this is the area that sets the standard, then the Goosewing Ranch sets the gold standard.”

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