Goosewing Ranch

Jackson Hole Dining: Goosewing Ranch Is for Food Lovers

At Goosewing Ranch in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, we pride ourselves on many things, and one element guests continue to praise is our outstanding food. When staying at a dude ranch, guests have had an activity-filled day, often spent horseback riding. So naturally, everyone works up an appetite! We’ve got the menu covered with diverse offerings and made-to-order entrees that are sure to hit the spot.

With all the activities to do while on vacation out West, dude ranch guests develop an abundant appetite.  From hiking in the Grand Tetons, touring through Yellowstone National Park, and horseback riding in the mountains surrounding Goosewing Ranch, you will enjoy the delightful meals being served.

Jackson Hole Dining: Goosewing Ranch Is for Food Lovers

Most meals are served family style in the Main Lodge where we have 3 chefs on staff. Our outdoor kitchen and dining area is a wonderful place for all to enjoy meals and family time. The outdoor dining area features a wood burning oven, covered seating, lighting, and propane above head heaters.

Breakfast

Breakfast is complete with eggs cooked to order, bacon, sausage, pancakes, French toast, and daily specials. In addition, there is a continental buffet with cereal, fruit and homemade pastries.

Breakfast

Lunch

Lunches are usually trailside picnics, but hot lunches are also prepared if you decide to stay at the ranch during the day. We can also provide picnic lunches if you would like to go off on your own for the afternoon.  Picnic lunches are your choice of deli sandwich, chips, fruit, granola, and cookie.

Dinner

Dinners are themed, and can include Prime Rib Night, Southwest Night, French Night, Cowboy Night (steaks), and Angler Night (trout and salmon). Depending on the cuisine, meals may be served plated or buffet style.

Once a week we do an open fire cookout in dutch ovens.  Enjoy an evening under the stars with friends and family while enjoying entertainment!  We encourage families to be together, but will be offering a kids’ cookout and adults dinner throughout the week.

Dining options for dinner include at least two main entree options, a vegetarian option, gluten free option, and a kids’ option. We can accommodate dietary restrictions with advanced notice.

Chef Clint will be serving up some amazing cuisine from basic ranch style food to more gourmet meals.

Wine List

We are pleased to offer a variety of wines from France and South America in keeping with both the French heritage of the area and the owner of the ranch. We are dedicated to giving you the best value possible, and our prices reflect that. Wine by the bottle is offered at retail price, while wine by the glass echoes restaurant price. We would be more than happy to stock a special bottle of wine for you to enjoy during your stay if you let us know before your arrival.

Jackson Hole Dining: Our Food Reviews

Don’t take our word for it. Here are some of the Facebook comments about our ranch:

LeTricia writes: “We just came back from an incredible vacation at Goosewing Ranch…The food was top notch. The staff and wranglers feel like family now. I highly recommend this place.”

“The people are so friendly, very knowledgeable the wranglers were very helpful and took care with everyone. If you went away hungry it was your own fault, Clint, Paula and staff did an excellent job. The scenery was amazing and sometimes breath taking. Would recommend this spot to everyone young and old.”-Michael J.

Read more of our ranch reviews to start planning your dude ranch vacation.

What to Expect on a Jackson Hole Wildlife Safari

One of the most memorable experiences while visiting Jackson Hole and Grand Teton National Park is a wildlife tour. We recommend wildlife safaris because guests will learn so much more about the national park’s history, wildlife, and the area than if they had driven through on their own. 

Expect wildlife if you are patient on a Jackson Hole wildlife safari; pronghorn are especially plentiful!

When in Jackson Hole, we highly recommend exploring Grand Teton National Park. And one of the most memory making ways is to do a wildlife safari. These guided tours give guests a wonderful way to learn about the natural history of the park along with sightings of its wild residents.

What to Expect on a Jackson Hole Wildlife Safari

Plan for at least 3-4 hours minimum touring time as well as travel time from the departure location for partial day tours. These tips will help you know what to expect of this wildlife encounter.

Choose What Time of Day Works Best for You (Usually Dawn or Dusk).

If morning people, go with a dawn tour; if not, stick with one at dusk. And have a camera at the ready all the way through to the very end of the tour. Animals are especially active at dawn and at dusk.

One of the best finds on a Jackson Hole wildlife safari: a moose.

Dress for the Outdoors.

Check the company website to see what is recommended for clothing. Most encourage that guests wear long pants, closed toed shoes, and bring a jacket. Shorts or capris are appropriate for summer months.

Most companies use open air vehicles and pair up groups. For private tours or more personalized service, private vans are available. So dress accordingly as temperatures fluctuate. Layers are key!

Expect to See Some Wildlife…But No Guarantees.

While safari goers will most likely see wildlife, keep in mind it IS wild animals, not animatronics.  There are no guarantees on what species will be seen. Actually, that’s part of what makes the experience so exciting! Guides do communicate via radio with one another on sightings, so that helps everyone to share in the wildlife spotting.

Be prepared on what to expect on a Jackson Hole wildlife safari by doing your homework-pick a reputable company and keep eyes peeled for wildlife.

Some of the potential animals include elk, moose, mule deer, pronghorn, bison, bighorn sheep, grizzly and black bear, and wolves can all be seen within the park boundaries.

Be prepared to use the tools of the trade.

Binoculars and spotting scope are tools of the tour during a wildlife safari. It may just mean glimpses of animals like wolves or bears, but still exhilarating! 

What to expect on a Jackson Hole wildlife safari: using spotting scopes to see animals like this moose.

Know What’s Included and What’s NOT.

Read the fine print to see what’s part of the tour and what costs extra. Most tours include snacks and refreshments; some dawn tours include breakfast and all day tours usually include meals. However, many do not include the park entry fee. The park entry fee is $20.00 per adult (16 and up), good for seven days. Guests who have a “Golden Age Pass” or an “Interagency Park Pass” can use these passes on the tour. Park passes can be purchased at the park entrance during the tour.

Recommended guide gratuity is also not included and roughly 10-15% of the tour price.

What to Expect on a Jackson Hole Wildlife Safari? Great scenery, tons of park history, photo worthy spots, and oh yeah, probably some wildlife! Whether a half day or full day tour, learn all about the ins and outs of these animal-centric tours and why you want to try one while visiting Grand Teton National Park. #JacksonHole #wildlifesafari #wildlifetour #nationalpark #GrandTeton #findyourpark

All Aboard Big Red: The Jackson Hole Aerial Tram

What’s rectangle shaped, red, and climbs almost 11,000 feet in less than 10 minutes? It’s the Jackson Hole Aerial Tram. Nicknamed Big Red, the aerial tram provides access to Rendezvous Peak (that’s 10,450 feet). What awaits at the top of this vertical climb of 4,139 feet?  360-degree views of the Grand Tetons and Jackson Hole valley!

The Jackson Hole aerial tram is worth taking a ride on; access is at Teton Village in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

The Jackson Hole Aerial Tram climbs to the top of Rendezvous Peak in only 9 minutes.

JACKSON HOLE AERIAL TRAM

Jackson Hole has many amazing modes of transportation, but one of the most memorable has to be the Aerial Tram at the Teton Village. Aptly nicknamed Big Red because…it’s red, this gliding gondola escorts passengers up to the summit of Rendezvous Mountain. It made us wonder: how this amazing feat of engineering come to be?

Originally, the Jackson Hole Aerial Tram was built in the heart of the Grand Tetons and completed in 1966 after 26 months of construction. In 2006, the tram was decommissioned and plans were put into place for a replacement. This new version was completed in unveiled in December 2008.

Tram Stats:

  • Base Area at 6,311 feet
  • Rendezvous Peak Summit 10,450 feet
  • Vertical drop of 4,139 feet
  • 12,463 feet in length
  • 2-car reversible tram carries 100 people per car
  • Uphill capacity of 650 people per hour

Tip: Purchase the Family Tram Ticket online for 2 adults and up to 4 juniors: $ 86/$97 peak season. Bonus: Kids 5 and under are free, so make sure you price it both ways to see if you need a family pass or would be better off individually.

Corbet’s Cabin

Once up top, take in the amazing views. And don’t miss the waffles! Corbet’s Cabin specializes in made to order with delicious toppings like brown sugar butter, Nutella and strawberries, lemon glaze, and peanut butter and bacon. They also has a great selection of hot and cold drinks, beer, snacks and tram souvenirs.

Waffles from Corbet's Cabin are one of the major draws for taking the Jackson Hole Aerial Tram

Between the views and the waffles at Corbet’s Cabin, this is a definite MUST DO. Drink plenty of water on the aerial tram day because the elevation is almost 11,000 feet. 

Corbet's Cabin has gorgeous views and delicious food served at 10, 450 feet.

Learn more about Jackson Hole, Grand Teton National Park, and why families should choose a dude ranch vacation.

What's rectangle shaped, red, and climbs almost 11,000 feet in less than 10 minutes? It's the Jackson Hole Aerial Tram! All aboard Big Red as we learn about the origins of this gliding gondola, how to save money on tickets, and where to find the most delicious waffles in Jackson Hole. #JacksonHole #TetonVillage #aerialtram #BigRed #Wyoming

Visiting Yellowstone National Park: Tips for What You Should Know

Yellowstone National Park is known for wildlife adventures, diverse ecosystems, and the most amazing scenery. This massive 2.2 million acre behemoth demands time and planning. Here are our Goosewing tips to make the most of your Yellowstone experience.

Yellowstone tips such as when to catch a rainbow at the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone and when crowds are fewer will be a big help to guests.

Yellowstone National Park hit over 4.2 million annual visitors in 2016, with peak season during June, July and August. So it pays to pre-plan as much as possible for trekking to this behemoth national park. 

Yellowstone Tips: What You Should Know

1. Plan Ahead and stay in the park if you can.

Believe us when we say that park accommodations will fill up as early as a year in advance, especially for the busy summer months. Staying at one of the nine lodges or the campgrounds in the park will save TONS of time because Yellowstone is enormous.

Given that the best times to enjoy the park are mornings and evenings when others have left the park, then having inside the park lodging is a major advantage. 

Old Faithful Inn is one of the best lodges in Yellowstone National Park; staying inside the park is one of our Yellowstone tips.

Another perk staying on property is securing dinner reservations, which are required for Old Faithful Inn, Lake Yellowstone Hotel and Grant Village dining rooms. Note that priority for dinner reservations is given to hotel guests. Visitors not staying in these locations must wait until 60 days in advance to make a dining reservation.

2. Grab gas and supplies before entering the park.

Packing a cooler with food and drinks will prove to be worth it. Filling the cooler up nightly with ice from the ice machines kept everything cold. And although there are gas stations within the park, it’s wise to go ahead and fill up before entering.

3. Animal lovers, check out Lamar and Hayden Valleys.

If keen on seeing animals, these are the two areas that cannot be missed. Everyone we met who had see some variety of wildlife had done it in Lamar Valley. Bison are plentiful, even up close to the road! We also spotted elk, wolves, and brown bears.

Book the Lamar Valley Wildlife Excursion on the Historic Yellow Bus for a guided tour that will tap into all the hotspots for wildlife watching. Early birds, there’s also the Wake Up to Wildlife Tour. The key takeaway here is to capitalize on the early mornings and/or early evenings in Yellowstone.

 Lamar Valley is loaded with bison! Most our animal sightings in Yellowstone were in either Lamar Valley or Hayden Valley.

4. Must See Sights:

 

Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone

Two words: worth it! The Yellowstone River becomes a waterfall as it plunges 308 feet over the Lower Falls. This spot is awe-inspiring as visitors are fingertips aways from the waterfall as it roars past. A fabulous photo opportunity. But warning: the trail is steep and loaded with switchbacks, which means as challenging as it is to descend, it’s that much harder to walk back up! If this doesn’t sound appealing, go to Artist Point where no climbing is required.

Yellowstone tips include heading to Artist Point to take in views of the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.

Old Faithful

Yellowstone has almost 60 percent of the world’s geysers. There are at least 150 geysers within 1 square miles. 5 of these major geysers are predicted regularly by the Yellowstone staff: Castle, Grand, Daisy, Riverside, and Old Faithful.

Old Faithful is a must see, making it tops on our list of Yellowstone tips; seeing it early in the morning or late at night means fewer crowds.

Old Faithful is probably the most popular attraction at Yellowstone. Named for its relative predictability, Old Faithful’s eruptions are forecast daily by the park rangers (give or take 5 minutes). Don’t miss the Old Faithful Visitor Education Center, a treasure trove of wonderful information and great place to snag junior ranger badges.

Old Faithful draws massive crowds, so try to visit early in the morning or late in the day. Check immediately about eruption times on posted placards or using the National Parks app. Snag a spot early to watch as the geyser shoots water on average 145 feet in the air for 1 1/2 to 5 minutes. 

Grand Prismatic Spring

Thee jaw-dropping Grand Prismatic Spring at the Midway Geyser Basin is larger than a football field and deeper than a 10-story building! What captivates is its gorgeous colors. Alongside Grand Prismatic, you’ll find Excelsior Geyser, Turquoise Pool, and Opal Pool.

Yellowstone tips on what you should know include going to see Grand Prismatic Spring

5. Book Tours to Learn More About this Park.

The 2-hour Twilight on the Firehole tour (late May to early September) shows off the Firehole region in its best light.

Climb aboard a 1930s-era Historic Yellow Bus for the Geyser Gazers outing (late May to mid-August and mid-September to early October). The 1½-hour exploration along Firehole Lake Drive takes in Excelsior Geyser Crater, a colossal hot spring that spews 4,000 gallons of water per minute into the Firehole River.

We're sharing our Yellowstone tips: everything you should know about lodging, tours, must see spots, and best ways to spot wildlife. This massive first national park has more to offer for travelers: from waterfalls, hot springs, and geysers to bison, bears, and wolves. #Yellowstone #nationalpark #Wyoming #nationalparks #yellowstonetips

If you have a full day, the Yellowstone in a Day Tour (late May to early October) covers the entire 142-mile Grand Loop Road, including Old Faithful, Lake Yellowstone Hotel, the Upper and Lower Falls of the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, Canyon Village, Mammoth Hot Springs, and Fountain Paint Pots.

As for booking tours, don’t rely solely on the website because it only takes a request form. Instead, call central reservations at (307) 344-7311. If all else fails, call back within the cancellation window because other guests might drop a reservation. 

6. Respect the Wildlife.

To protect yourself and the animals you come to watch, always remain at least 100 yards from bears or wolves, and at least 25 yards from all other wildlife. Never approach or pursue an animal to take its picture: use binoculars or telephoto lenses to get a better view. If an animal moves closer to you, back away to maintain a safe distance.

Wildlife run rampant in Yellowstone National Park; our Yellowstone tips for how to maximize wildlife sightings like this fox.

Must-have supplies for wildlife watching would be binoculars, camera/lenses, and bear spray if hiking is planned.

Also expect to see a bison traffic jam. When they decide to use the road, all bets are off on how soon vehicles will make it through. Patience is definitely a virtue in the park!

7. Find the best park ticket price.

There are several deals going on park passes:

Annual Pass: Purchase an America the Beautiful Annual Pass ($80) if several national parks are in your plans.

Senior Pass: Available for U.S. citizens or permanent residents age 62 or over. Applicants must provide documentation of age and residency or citizenship. Cost: $80 for a lifetime Senior Pass and $20 for Annual Senior Pass.

Every Kid in a Park (4th Graders): And don’t forget if you have a 4th grader, the entire family gets free admission to all national parks as part of the Every Kid in a Park initiative.

Military Pass: FREE to current U.S. military members and dependents in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard as well as Reserve and National Guard members.

One of many hot springs is in Fountain Paint Pots, part of our Yellowstone tips.

Snake River: What You Should Know

Snake River weaves it way through the Western landscape in Wyoming, from Yellowstone down to Grand Teton National Park and into Jackson Hole and beyond. Learn more about this river and why it should be on every Jackson Hole traveler’s list for its awesome water-based activities.

Snake River runs through Grand Teton National Park and spans 6 states including here in Wyoming.

Here at Goosewing Ranch, we love the landscape in our neck of the woods, and one of the natural beauties is the Snake River. This rollicking river wows with Teton views, terrific rapids, and stunning scenery.

Snake River: What You Should Know

Did you know?

  • The Snake River is the 9th longest river in the US at 1,078 miles and the longest tributary of the Columbia River.
  • Its drainage basin covers parts of six states which are Idaho, Nevada, Wyoming, Oregon, Utah and Washington.
  • The average flow of the river is 1,553 cubic meters per second.

One of the main reasons to explore Snake River is the stunning scenery!

Its Name Was a Misinterpretation

The Snake River likely got its name from European explorers who misinterpreted the sign made by the Shoshone people. The Shoshone made swimming motions which appeared to these explorers to be a snake. In actuality, they were signing that they lived near the river with many fish.

Lewis and Clark were the first American explorers to discover it.

Between 1804 and 1806, Lewis and Clark sailed down the Snake River to the Columbia River. Lewis is credited as the first American to see this river’s drainage basin, so it is often called Lewis Fork.

Snake River offers rafting, scenic floats, and fishing just to name a few popular summer activities. What you need to know before you explore Snake River in jackson Hole, Wyoming and beyond. #JacksonHole #SnakeRiver #GrandTeton #nationalpark #Wyoming

Things to Do on the Snake River

In Jackson Hole, there are many activities centered on Snake River. From rolling rapids to calm waters through Grand Teton National Park, rafting makes the cut on many guests’ wish lists.

Whitewater Rafting

For outdoor fun and an adrenaline boost, whitewater rafting is the way to go. The most popular rafting section of the river stretches from Grand Teton National Park and travels through Jackson Hole.

Scenic floats along the Snake River are photo opportunities at every turn!

Scenic Float

If relaxation and soaking in the scenery is more your speed, then we suggest a scenic float. Enjoy a secluded trip down Snake River inside the Grand Teton National Park for a one-of-a-kind way to see the national park. Be sure to bring a camera and binoculars to take in all the wildlife and great shots. Most whitewater companies also offer scenic float excursions.

Fishing

Ask the experts and they will agree that Snake River is perfectly suited for fly fishing whether a beginner or expert. Plus, there are those incomparable views of the Tetons. Many outfitters offer fly fishing in the area and welcome all ages (kids should be old enough to sit in a small drift boat for a half or full day). All fishing in Jackson Hole is catch and release to keep population levels high. We also have fishing here on our ranch to give it a try before taking on Snake River.

If planning any of these activities, be sure to bring appropriate apparel. Check out our packing list of suggested items for a Western vacation.

Fishing is one of the best family activities whether at Goosewing Ranch or on the Snake River during your stay in Jackson Hole.

Things to Do in Yellowstone National Park

As the first and the biggest national park, Yellowstone requires some pre-planning but it is so worth the effort! From guided tours to fishing, hiking, boating and horseback riding, the activities are endless. So we’re sharing a list of Yellowstone Things to Do, links for best adventures, and tips to make this amazing park more approachable.

Yellowstone Things to Do include making sure to capture the entrance signs to document the trip.

Is Yellowstone popular? You bet! Especially during peak season in June, July, and August. In 2017, visitors to Yellowstone National Park totaled 4.1 million, the second highest attendance ever. Since 2008, annual visitation to Yellowstone has increased by close to 40 percent. So it’s imperative to choose activities and excursions wisely. We’re sharing ideas on the best Things to Do in Yellowstone National Park.

Yellowstone Things to Do

From guided tours aboard historic buses to stagecoach adventures and horseback tours, there is truly something for everyone as far as touring Yellowstone. Private touring companies abound as well as these offered by the Yellowstone National Park Lodges:

Scenic Tours

The 2-hour Twilight on the Firehole tour (late May to early September) shows off the Firehole region in its best light.

Climb aboard a 1930s-era Historic Yellow Bus for the Geyser Gazers outing (late May to mid-August and mid-September to early October). The 1½-hour exploration along Firehole Lake Drive takes in Excelsior Geyser Crater, a colossal hot spring that spews 4,000 gallons of water per minute into the Firehole River.

If you have a full day, the Yellowstone in a Day Tour (late May to early October) covers the entire 142-mile Grand Loop Road, including Old Faithful, Lake Yellowstone Hotel, the Upper and Lower Falls of the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, Canyon Village, Mammoth Hot Springs, and Fountain Paint Pots.

Geyser Gazers might see gorgeous star-filled skies, one of many guided tours that make our Yellowstone things to do list.

Wildlife Tours

Wildlife safaris are incredibly popular as a combination of education and wildlife sightseeing. There are multiple touring companies offering a wide range of excursions that teach visitors about the wildlife, geology, and natural history of the park. Book in advance because they will fill up fast.

For early risers, the Wake Up to Wildlife Tour (late May to late September) covers the Lamar Valley area in a 13-passenger Historic Yellow Bus. The roof rolls back for better wildlife viewing. Bison roam the Lamar Valley alongside bears, elk, bighorn sheep and even wolves.

Bison roam the Lamar Valley, making this area one to visit while looking for Yellowstone things to do.

Photo Safaris

Guides of the Picture Perfect Photo Safari (mid-May to early October) are educated in both the region and photography. Offering two 5-hour tours: one leaving from Old Faithful Inn and focusing on thermal areas north of the lodge, and the second one leaving from Lake Yellowstone Hotel that scopes out wildlife in the Hayden Valley, the north shore of Lake Yellowstone, and the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.

Old West Adventures

For a combination horseback and dining experience, try the Old West Dinner Cookout (mid-June to mid-September). Getting there via horseback or in a canvas-covered wagon is part of the fun. What awaits is steaks cooked to order, Roosevelt Baked Beans, potato salad, coleslaw, cornbread muffins, chuck wagon corn, watermelon, and fruit crisp. Add in hot coffee over a roaring campfire with Western tunes and it is truly an adventure!

Or there’s the Stagecoach Adventure from Roosevelt where guests will feel like pioneers and hear about the stagecoach’s history in Yellowstone.

Is Yellowstone popular? You bet! Especially during peak season in June, July, and August.Since 2008, annual visitation to Yellowstone has increased by close to 40 percent. So it's imperative to choose activities and excursions wisely. We're sharing ideas on the best Things to Do in Yellowstone National Park. From tours to wildlife, get ready to roll into your Yellowstone adventure with our links and tips. #Yellowstone #nationalpark #findyourpark #YellowstoneNationalPark

Other Yellowstone Activities

Wildlife Watching

Make your own wildlife tour by exploring on your own. Keep in mind that some of the best wildlife viewing areas include Hayden Valley and Lamar Valley. In Hayden Valley, look for bison, black bears, elk, grizzly bears, and wolves. Lamar Valley is home to bison, black bears, bighorn sheep, elk, grizzly bears, mule deer, pronghorn,  and wolves.

Yellowstone Things to Do include keeping eyes peeled for wildlife like wolves, bears, and bison

 

When in doubt and there are a lot of cars pulled over, there is likely a wildlife sighting (especially if many people have spotting scopes).

Horseback Riding

For horse lovers,  Yellowstone allows private, licensed outfitters who have been authorized to operate in the park to guide trips. Some outfitters offer day trips and some offer guided overnight backcountry trips. The Yellowstone National Park Lodges also offer 1 or 2-hour horseback rides  from Tower-Roosevelt and Canyon (early June to early September).

While we love for guests to do their horseback riding with us here at Goosewing, we can say that it’s an awesome activity no matter where you experience it.

Hiking

Yellowstone has more than 900 miles of hiking trails. The National Park Service has a great guide on all the hiking trails in the park. Keep in Mind: Many of Yellowstone’s trails are more than 7,000 feet above sea level. Additionally, most areas retain snow until late May/early June, and some higher elevation spots are snow-covered until late July.

Be Bear Aware: If planning on hiking, we recommend purchasing bear spray. Also it is vital to carry drinking water. Dehydration is common and can be serious. Most visitors will need to drink considerably more here due to low humidity and high elevation.

Yellowstone Things to Do include looking for elusive bears; be sure to stay back at least 100 feet.

Boating

Yellowstone Lake is the setting for a  1-hour Scenicruise (mid-June to mid-September) featuring eagles, osprey, and other birds from aboard the Lake Queen. Or go it on your own by renting a motorboat or rowboat at Bridge Bay Marina. Other companies offer guided services for canoeing, kayaking, and motorized boating.

If using your own boat/float tube, you’ll need a permit and a free Yellowstone aquatic invasive species inspection. You can speed up the inspection process by arriving with a boat that is clean, drained, and dry. Watercraft that arrive dirty or with standing water will be subject to decontamination; if they cannot be properly decontaminated, then the watercraft will be prohibited from launching.

Fishing

Of the approximately 4 million Yellowstone visitors each year, about 50,000 of them fish. Anglers 16 years of age or older must have a valid National Park fishing permit to fish in the park (state fishing licenses are not valid). 3-day permit: $18; 7-day permit: $25; and season-long permit: $40.

Fishing is popular in Yellowstone National Park, making it one of the best things to do in Yellowstone.

Ranger Programs

Join a ranger for a scheduled program to learn about the wild communities, history and geology of the park.

General Information about Yellowstone

Visitor Centers

Need information? Then check out one of the 10 visitor centers:

  • Albright Visitor Center (open June to September)-Mammoth Hot Springs.
  • Canyon Visitor Education Center (open late Spring through mid Fall)-Canyon Village.
  • Fishing Bridge Visitor Center & Trailside Museum (open May to September)-Lake Yellowstone.
  • Grant Visitor Center (open May to October)-western shore of Yellowstone Lake, a short distance south of the West Thumb Geyser Basin.
  • Madison Information Station & Trailside Museum (open May to October)-Located between Madison Junction and Old Faithful.
  • Museum of the National Park Ranger (open May to September)-off the Grand Loop Road at the entrance to Norris Campground.
  • Norris Geyser Basin Museum & Information Station (open May to October)-1/4 mile east of Norris Junction just off the Grand Loop Road.
  • Old Faithful Visitor Education Center (open daily throughout the year, with two month-long closed periods in the fall and spring)-Upper Geyser Basin at Old Faithful.
  • West Thumb Information Station (open May to October)-north of Grant Village and on Lake Yellowstone.
  • West Yellowstone Visitor Information Center (open May through September, and open weekdays, early November through April)-in the West Yellowstone Chamber of Commerce.

Old Faithful Visitor Center is chock full of educational information, making it one of Yellowstone things to do

Entrance Fees 

  • $35  Yellowstone-Private Vehicle (good for 7 days)
  • $30 Yellowstone-Motorcycle (good for 7 days)
  • $20 Yellowstone Hiker/Biker (good for 7 days)
  • $70 Yellowstone Annual Pass
  • $80 America the Beautiful Annual Pass (recommended if you’re going to multiple parks)

Use this Yellowstone Map to get familiar with the areas ahead of time.

Tips from the National Park Service

Here are some of the rules that the National Park Service has come up with to help protect the delicate balance between parkgoers and wildlife:

  • To protect yourself and the animals you come to watch, always remain at least 100 yards from bears or wolves, and at least 25 yards from all other wildlife.
  • Never approach or pursue an animal to take its picture: use binoculars or telephoto lenses to get a better view.
  • If an animal moves closer to you, back away to maintain a safe distance.
  • If you cause an animal to move, you’re too close. It’s illegal to willfully remain near or approach wildlife, including birds, within any distance that disturbs or displaces the animal.
  • Park in roadside pullouts when watching/photographing animals: do not block traffic.
  • Stay in or next to your car when watching bears. If a bear approaches or touches your car, honk your horn and drive away to discourage this behavior.

Yellowstone Must See Spots

Old Faithful

Yellowstone has almost 60 percent of the world’s geysers. Within one square mile, there are at least 150 of these hydrothermal wonders. 5 of these major geysers are predicted regularly by the Yellowstone staff: Castle, Grand, Daisy, Riverside, and Old Faithful.

Old Faithful is probably the most popular Yellowstone things to do.

 

“Old Faithful is one of nearly 500 geysers in Yellowstone and one of six that park rangers can currently predict. It is uncommon to be able to predict geyser eruptions with regularity and Old Faithful has lived up to its name, only lengthening the time between eruptions by about 30 minutes in the last 30 years. The reliability of Old Faithful inspired early developers to build special viewing areas, lodging, and concessions for visitors to watch eruptions.”

Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone

The Yellowstone River becomes a waterfall as it plunges 308 feet over the Lower Falls. Artist Point is the easier spot to view the falls or choose the Lower Falls trail. It’s quite steep (328 steps down) and loaded with switchbacks, which means as challenging as it is to descend, it’s that much harder to walk back up! But this spot is awe-inspiring as visitors are fingertips aways from the waterfall as it roars past. A fabulous photo opportunity.

On our list of Yellowstone things to do, The Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone boasts epic views.

Grand Prismatic Spring

Also a MUST SEE is the jaw-dropping Grand Prismatic Spring at the Midway Geyser Basin. It’s larger than a football field and deeper than a 10-story building! What captivates is its gorgeous colors. Alongside Grand Prismatic, you’ll find Excelsior Geyser, Turquoise Pool, and Opal Pool.

Yellowstone Things to Do include Grand Prismatic Spring

Yellowstone Tips

Arrive early and/or stay late.

Park entrances are generally busiest from 9 am to 11 am. And since it doesn’t get dark during the summer until 9PM, stay late and there will be fewer crowds as dinner time approaches.

Get the apps.

National Park Service offers two free apps to help with planning your trip, understanding the stories of the park, and enjoying your visit. For planning and education, there’s the official National Park Service app.
Meanwhile, the NPS Yellowstone Geysers app provides eruption predictions (when available) for Old Faithful, Grand, Castle, Great Fountain, Daisy, and Riverside Geysers. They are great resources for the latest geyser predictions, campsite and lodging availabilities, and road conditions from Yellowstone’s live data feeds.

Be Patient and Prepared.

Summer is the busiest season of the year. It’s the best time to see a variety of wildlife – wolves, bears, moose, elk, and deer. Temperatures usually hover at 70F with cooler temperatures at night. Some elevations see freezing temperatures overnight. And watch out-thunderstorms are common in the afternoons.

Follow the Rules.

DO NOT approach the animals. It’s called WILDlife for a reason.

Stay on boardwalks and paths because they are designed to protect guests and the land. Hot springs are very dangerous! They injure/kill more people than any other natural feature in the park.

Stay on the paths in Yellowstone, one of the best tips pertaining to Yellowstone things to do.

Why Jackson Hole: Yellowstone, Tetons, and Ranches

Winter is one of the best times to make plans for a vacation destination.  Whether a young couple, mature couple, large family or small, the Jackson Hole area has something offer each diverse traveler.  Make this year’s vacation an adventure filled with new experiences while exploring this educational and historic area. Here’s why Jackson Hole (hint: Yellowstone and Grand Teton might have something to do with it).

 

Why Jackson Hole

Yellowstone National Park

Wyoming is home to our nation’s first National Park, Yellowstone National Park, founded in 1872.  However, Yellowstone is not the only park that neighbors Jackson Hole-there is also Grand Teton National Park.  Jackson not only has two historic and magnificent parks in its backyard, but is also home to many guest ranches and summer attractions.

Black Pool Hot Spring in Yellowstone National Park

 

Grand Teton National Park

Grand Teton National Park has much to offer as well.  This is a great area to enjoy the water or spend the day hiking.  Grand Teton has hiking trails suitable for those looking for an easy family picnic and hike to the more adventurous climber and backpacker.  Grand Teton has many great opportunities to view wildlife and is a photographer’s dream.

Dude Ranch as Home Base for the Parks

Guest Ranches such as Goosewing Ranch are a great way to visit the area with the ease of an all-inclusive package.  While staying at a ranch you can enjoy many different activities from hiking, horseback riding, line dancing, spa treatments, rodeos, cookouts, off-roading, and more.  But, make sure you save some time to visit Jackson Hole for some shopping, rodeo, rafting and a quick history lesson, and then head into Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks.

There are many outfitters that will guide you through the parks in all fashions, but if you are a do-it-yourself kind of person here are a few tips.  I would suggest leaving your accommodations early in the morning and hitting the trail.  You should allow for a full day or more in each park, 12+ hours.

If you only have one day I suggest driving the Lower Loop of Yellowstone.  You will see such features as Old Faithful, boiling paint pots, hot springs and swimming holes, waterfalls, grand canyons, and hopefully some wildlife.  There are many different boardwalks taking you safely around various features of the park, and you may find park rangers on site to answer questions.

Remember obey all warning and safety postings and keep a vast distance between yourself and ALL wildlife. Yellowstone might have park behind its name but that doesn’t mean it is safe to play or recreate anywhere.

 

Between Jackson, the national parks of Yellowstone and Grand Teton, the Jackson Hole area has a lot to offer a diverse group of travelers.  With a history, adventure, and science rich environment, you will return home with more than a vacation. You will return home having had an experience.  When visiting Jackson Hole, expect to experience the Wild West!

Grand Teton National Park Things to Do

Grand Teton National Park is one of the major draws to a trip to Wyoming and the Jackson Hole area. Besides stunning scenery, there are so many outstanding activities and attractions-more so than most guests have time for! We break down the massive list of things to do in Grand Teton National Park along with some tips and basics to know before you go.

Grand Teton National Park things to do include animal watching, scenic floating, hiking, and photographing views like this one of the Tetons.

Grab your binoculars and set your sights on a Grand Teton National Park trip! With a little bit of planning and an open mind to exploring, Jackson Hole and the Grand Tetons will potentially be the best vacation ever. Get ready with our suggestions of things to do in Grand Teton National Park.

With wildlife and mountains and activities galore, Grand Teton National Park has more things to do than most people have days to visit. Make the most of this national park experience with our guide to all the activities in Grand Teton-from hiking, boating, eye spying for animals, and best photo worthy spots. #GrandTeton #GrandTetonNationalPark #nationalparks #Wyoming #guide

Things to Do in Grand Teton National Park

Take a Scenic Drive

This is the best way to cover a lot of ground or if pushed for time.

  • The 42 Mile Scenic Loop: This is a loop, so start wherever is convenient for you. Our recommendation is to start in Moose and travel north along US-89 to Jackson Lake and return to Moose via the Teton Park Road.
  • Jenny Lake Scenic Drive: Follows the east shore of Jenny Lake and provides spectacular views of the peaks.
  • Signal Mountain Summit Road: Signal Mountain is the only mountain to be climbed by car. 5 miles to Signal Mountain’s 7,720-foot summit, from which you have 360-degree views of the valley below.

Snake River Scenic Float

Most of the major companies offering scenic floats glide down 10 miles of the Snake River. All the while, guests are soaking in all the majestic views of the Tetons and wildlife at close range. With an average round trip time of 2.5 – 3 hours, these trips are an ideal length, long enough to be considered a full river adventure yet short enough to allow other Jackson Hole activities the same day.

Scenic float trips down the Snake River are one of the most breathtaking Grand Teton National Park things to do.

List of companies offering float trips:

  • Barker-Ewing Scenic Tours
  • Grand Fishing Adventures
  • Grand Teton Lodge Company
  • Headwaters Lodge & Cabins at Flagg Ranch
  • Heart 6 Ranch
  • Lost Creek Ranch
  • Signal Mountain Lodge
  • Snake River Angler
  • Solitude Float Trips
  • Teton Whitewater
  • Triangle X / National Park Float Trips

Jenny Lake

Lakes and hike are two of the main draws for Jenny Lake. Most noteworthy hikes include Hidden Falls Trail including Inspiration Point, a moderate 4.9 mile loop trail; String Lake Loop-easy at 3.9 miles; and Paintbrush Canyon, 16 miles categorized as strenuous.

Interesting Fact: Jenny Lake formed during the ice age when glaciers flowed down canyons and carved out depressions on the valley floor. Today, water fills these depressions forming lakes. Jenny Lake is over 250 feet deep!

Inside the Park Activities

They don’t call it the great outdoors for nothing! Grand Teton National Park has so many activities to be enjoyed outdoors, there may not be enough days in the vacation.

Park Tours

Wildlife safaris are incredibly popular as a combination of education and wildlife sightseeing. There are multiple touring companies offering a wide range of excursions that teach visitors about the wildlife, geology, and natural history of the park. Book in advance because they will fill up fast.

Things to Do in Grand Teton National Park include wildlife safaris to see moose, elk, and other animals.

Horseback Riding

While we love for guests to do their horseback riding with us, we can say that it’s an awesome activity no matter where you experience it.

For inside the park rides, there are 1 and 2 hour horseback rides departing from Jackson Lake Lodge and Colter Bay Village, and 1 hour rides from Headwaters Lodge. While on the rides, wranglers share insight into the area’s history, wildlife and flora. Horseback riding at Jenny Lake Lodge is available to guests staying at the Lodge.

Commercial companies offering rides in the park include: Headwaters Lodge at Flagg Ranch, Grand Teton Lodge Company, and Lost Creek Ranch.

Hiking

The National Park Service has a great guide on all the hiking trails in the park.

Be Bear Aware: If planning on hiking, we recommend purchasing bear spray. Also it is vital to carry drinking water. Dehydration is common and can be serious. Most visitors will need to drink considerably more here due to low humidity and high elevation.

The marina at Signal Mountain Lodge overlooking Jackson Lake has boat rentals, one of the fun things to do in Grand Teton National Park.

Boat Rentals

From canoes to kayaks and motorized boats are plentiful in the park. Just be wise which lakes allow which types of vessels. On Jenny Lake, you can rent a canoe or kayak or launch your own boat (less than 10 horsepower) to enjoy the lake at your own pace. A boat permit is required. Sailboats and wind-surfers are not allowed on Jenny Lake, but may be used on Jackson Lake.

Where to Rent:

Fishing

Fishing fans might be angling to try some fishing inside the park. As such, purchase a Wyoming fishing license at marinas and tackle shops.

These companies provide commercial fishing trips licenses by the NPS:

  • Grand Fishing Adventures
  • Grand Teton Lodge Company
  • Headwaters Lodge & Cabins at Flagg Ranch
  • Grand Teton Fly Fishing
  • Lost Creek Ranch
  • Signal Mountain Lodge
  • Snake River Angler
  • Triangle X/National Park Float Trip

Ranger Programs

Join a ranger for a scheduled program to learn about the wild communities, history and geology of the park.

Grand Teton National Park General Information

Visitor Centers

Need information? Then check out one of the 5 visitor centers:

  • Craig Thomas Discovery & Visitor Center (open March to October)-Located in Moose 12 miles north of Jackson.
  • Colter Bay Visitor Center (open mid-May to October)-Located 25 miles north of Moose, adjacent to Jackson Lake.
  • Flagg Ranch Information Station (open June to early September)-Located 16 miles north of Colter Bay on Highway 89/191/287.
  • Jenny Lake Visitor Center (open May to September)-Located 8 miles north of Moose at South Jenny Lake.
  • Laurance S. Rockefeller Preserve Center (open June to September)-Located four miles south of Moose on the Moose-Wilson Road.

Entrance Fees 

  • $35 Grand Teton-Private Vehicle (good for 7 days)
  • $30 Grand Teton-Motorcycle (good for 7 days)
  • $20 Grand Teton Hiker/Biker (good for 7 days)
  • $70 Grand Teton Annual Pass
  • $80 America the Beautiful Annual Pass (recommended if you’re going to multiple parks)

Things to Do in Grand Teton National Park include scenic drives to do wildlife spotting like these bison.

Tips from the National Park Service

Here are some of the rules that NPS has come up with to help protect the delicate balance between parkgoers and wildlife:

  • DO NOT approach wild animals. Whether in a car or on foot, stay at least 100 yards away from bears and wolves and 25 yards away from other wildlife.
  • Use binoculars, spotting scopes or long lenses for close views and photographs.
  • Never position yourself between an adult and its offspring. Females with young are especially defensive.
  • It is illegal to feed wildlife, including ground squirrels and birds. Feeding wild animals makes them dependent on people, and animals often bite the hand that feeds them.
  • Do not harass wildlife. Harassment is any human action that causes unusual behavior, or a change of behavior, in an animal. Repeated encounters with people can have negative, long-term impacts on wildlife, including increased levels of stress and the avoidance of essential feeding areas.
  • Nesting birds are easily disturbed. For wildlife, raising young is a private affair. If an adult bird on a nest flies off at your approach, or circles you or screams in alarm, you are too close to the nest. Unattended nestlings readily succumb to predation and exposure to heat, cold, and wet weather.
  • Allow other visitors a chance to enjoy wildlife. If your actions cause an animal to flee, you have deprived other visitors of a viewing opportunity. Use an animal’s behavior as a guide to your actions.

Photo Worthy Spots

Oxbow Bend

Don’t miss Oxbow Bend, possibly the most iconic Grand Teton National Park sight and also the most photographed. The appeal? Capturing Snake River as it approaches the Teton Range with Mount Moran reflected in the water.

Oxbow Bend in Grand Teton National Park is one of the key places to see and photograph.

Located just a little over a mile straight east of the Jackson Lake Junction on Highway 89, this spot will jump out because of its beauty and also the crowds!

Schwabacher’s Landing 

Schwabacher’s Landing is a launch site on the Snake River for anglers and river rafters and is one of America’s most spectacular viewpoints.

From Jackson, WY – travel north on Highway 191 for 16 miles and then turn left onto Schwabacher’s Landing Road.

Mormon Row

This area gets it name because Mormon settlers once established 27 homesteads here. It’s a photographer’s dream; two historic barns are the backdrop to some of the most iconic landscape shots in the US.

Driving north on highway 191, turn right onto Antelope Flats road just past Moose Junction. In a little over a mile, turn left at a small dirt road. Parking area provides access to the John Moulton barn, and turning right goes to the T.A. Moulton barn.

Moulton Barn is one of the most majestic views, making it one of the Grand Teton National Park things to do.

8 Reasons to Take a Dude Ranch Vacation

A dude ranch vacation? Say yes, but don’t go into it expecting City Slickers. From outdoor excursions to horseback adventures, the fun quotient at a dude ranch is off the charts. Guests looking for a nature-centric, outdoors vacation are guaranteed to love the views and the diversity of activities. Knowing what to expect is key to finding the right ranch. So here are 8 reasons to choose a dude ranch vacation.

One of the 8 Reasons to Take a Dude Ranch Vacation has to be horseback riding and trail rides.

If you’ve never taken a dude ranch vacation, just ask someone who has. They will probably have many stories and likely will rave about it…for good reason! Find out these 8 reasons to choose a dude ranch vacation. Then we hope you’ll consider Goosewing Ranch in Jackson Hole for this adventure. Don’t be surprised if it becomes the family’s new go-to destination.

8 Reasons to Take a Dude Ranch Vacation

1. Location, location, location.

Consider where your dude ranch is located. If the ranch is close proximity to national parks, plan to take advantage of this either before or after your dude ranch vacation.

One of the 8 Reasons to Take a Dude Ranch Vacation includes location; Goosewing Ranch's proximity to Jackson, Wyoming makes it a popular spot.

Our ranch is about 40 miles northeast of the town of Jackson. You will need about 30 minutes for the first half, through beautiful Grand Teton National Park. The last 20 miles will take about 45 minutes, driving along a scenic dirt road through the Bridger Teton National Forest. Goosewing Ranch is about 90 miles from the south entrance of the Park. Allow at least 2 hours for driving through Grand Teton Park and wilderness and along the John D. Rockefeller Memorial Parkway to reach the South entrance of Yellowstone.

Study up on your ranch ahead of time. Know what it’s close to and what activities it offers. This helps everyone go in with realistic expectations. Pamela from California took this advice to heart: “We researched guest/dude ranches for months trying to find the right ranch for us. We loved the fact that Goosewing Ranch is a smaller more intimate ranch!”

8 Reasons to Take a Dude Ranch Vacation have to be their close location to national parks, especially Grand Teton National Park; Goosewing Ranch even has views of the Grand Tetons from the ranch.

Our ranch is also in a prime location with views of the Grand Tetons. Located deep in the Gros Ventre River Valley in the Jackson Hole, Wyoming area. Goosewing Ranch marks the entry point to a protected, pristine wilderness. The south entrance to Yellowstone National Park is located just 90 miles north, and you are within minutes of the majestic mountains of Grand Teton National Park, one of three mountain ranges surrounding the high valley of Jackson Hole. 

Looking for the ultimate family vacation? Here's 8 reasons to choose a dude ranch vacation. From food to horseback rides to exploring nature and new activities, there is something for everyone at a dude ranch. Especially if families and guests want to unplug from the stresses of life and get off the grid! We hope you are convinced to book a dude ranch experience with us at Goosewing Ranch in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. #duderanch #JacksonHole #duderanchvacation #Wyoming #thatsWY

2. The experience feels like family.

So may dude ranches are owned by families or have been in their family for years, so it translates that a dude ranch vacation feels like staying with family. It starts early because the staff get to know all the guests. Additionally, the warm hospitality also spills over to fellow guests who are sharing the same experiences. 

Bonding with staff and fellow guests make dude ranches feel like family, one of the 8 Reasons to Take a Dude Ranch Vacation.

One guest compared it to old friends: “Staff were extremely friendly and helpful! Felt like we were old friends and enjoyed meeting them.”And Jayne from London gives credit to the staff: “But most of all we enjoyed the people, who were all warm, charming and willing to bend over backwards to give us a great experience.”

We highly recommend read the reviews of previous guests. Our ranch is happy to share guest feedback because it both gives an unbiased review of our property…and because they have great things to say!

3. Prepare to be surprised at what your family can do.

A dude ranch is a liberating experience for the entire family. Kids may discover skills they didn’t know they had; grown-ups may try something for the very first time.  

Some of the new-to-you activities might include: target shooting with .22 rifles or BB guns, Geo-caching, hatchet throwing, archery, horse games, fishing instruction, themed trail rides, wagon rides, team penning, unguided tubing the river, unguided hiking, unguided mountain biking, and roping practice.

trying new activities like axe throwing is unique experience at a dude ranch, making it one of the 8 Reasons to Take a Dude Ranch Vacation.

As an added bonus, we also have a glamping site with covered wagons as accommodations. Be the envy of your friends and family when you return home with grand stories of horseback riding, wildlife spotting, hiking, fishing, explorations, and much more.

The Goosewing glamping site is located about four miles northeast of the ranch and sits at about 8,400 feet.  This is a unique western experience perfect for those seeking adventure without sacrificing comfort.  You will have many opportunities to search for wildlife, learn survival skills, learn about Dutch oven cooking, learn how to tack and care for your horse, fish, ride, hike, and explore the Gros Ventre area.  This is a remote location and the main focus is for you to have a unique Western experience in a one-of-a-kind location.

8 Reasons to Take a Dude Ranch Vacation: glamping in a covered wagon like this one here at Goosewing Ranch in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

Guests from Arlington, Virgina found glamping to be the highlight of their vacation:”The covered wagon, in particular, was awesome. We were the only guests there and wrangler Wayne and cook Jim were super hosts. We spent both days riding horses all day, learning how to tend for them, taking the ATV up the mountain, eating and drinking around the campfire, and enjoying some space and time out in nature with virtually no other contact or modern life. It was the highlight of our ten-day trip to Wyoming.”

4. While on a Dude Ranch, Enjoy Everything It Has to Offer

Dude ranches hit the mark with amazing activities. We offer fly fishing, archery, skeet shooting, cattle herding and pinning, target shooting, hatchet throwing, driving our Utility Terrain Vehicles, and tubing. Not to mention the special events like cookouts, s’mores by the fire, and hayrides. And don’t discount enjoying the pool and hot tub after a day in the saddle.

Keep in mind that many ranches are isolated and it will take some driving to get to any off-site activity. Translation: Once guests arrive at our ranch, they don’t want to leave! 

Cooling off in the pool or soaking in the spa after a trail ride sounds pretty appealing, which means amenities at a dude ranch are one of the 8 Reasons to Take a Dude Ranch Vacation

Here’s how Jodi D. described it: “As many activities or as little as you want – fly fishing, trip to rodeo, horseback riding (several trips to choose from) swimming pool, skeet shooting, Rangers to explore…..Absolutely LOVED it!”

While it’s not included in our packages, we will gladly arrange excursions to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks; Rafting or floating trips on the Snake River; Guided Fishing trips; Golf outings; Hot Air Balloon Rides; Guided Hiking Tours; or a Night at the Rodeo.

One of the 8 Reasons to Take a Dude Ranch Vacation: consider the local attractions like the Jackson Rodeo.

5. Dude Ranches are heavy on horseback riding.

The heart and soul of a dude ranch is its horseback riding. This becomes obvious when one of the very first things guests do is get fitted for a horse. Simply put, a dude ranch vacation is more enjoyable if guests are willing to ride. All levels are welcome as Bonnie from Illinois commented: “As far as horseback riding, you could take beginner, intermediate or advanced riding lessons all included in your week. The staff at the stables were awesome and very patient with you. They offered 2, 3, or 6 hour rides.”

Come to a dude ranch primarily for the horseback riding; all levels are welcome, making it one of the 8 Reasons to Take a Dude Ranch Vacation.

One of our guests from Alameda, CA commented: “We rode every day, and never repeated a trail. These trail rides are not at all like trail rides you have ever taken…or at least not like the tourist trail ride where you ride an hour to a waterfall, have lunch, and ride back. Sometimes we weren’t even on a trail…just rode where we wanted to go. We had beautiful views from our lunch spots, as we gained altitude during the ride. We also rode through shallow rivers. It was breathtaking wherever we were. The vistas never got tiring. The fall foliage was really starting to come into its own, mostly with the aspens. We took far too many pictures, as it just seemed so pretty at every turn we made.”

Check out these views of the Grand Tetons from Goosewing Ranch's trail ride and think of it as one of 8 Reasons to Take a Dude Ranch Vacation.

Guests from London raved about the horseback riding options: “We did one ride a day, 4 and 6 hour duration. For the longer rides, the kitchen provides packed lunches which you order in advance. The rides were fun – we passed the loping test and were able to lope (canter) on the trails. The scenery was spectacular – we haven’t been anywhere like this. Two of our rides allowed us to have amazing views of the Tetons – nothing like it.”

6. Freedom from Devices.

Most ranches like ours have limited wifi and cell phone service. We like to call it the “dude ranch bubble.”  And consistently we hear that families are happy to be in the bubble and free from electronics. Families can instead focus on their adventures and each other.

A guest from Jupiter, Florida said: “You really go off the grid. No cell service. Wifi is pretty much non-existent. Just go with the mindset that you are disconnecting. Was wonderful to have our full family unplugged for a week!”

7. Choose a Ranch that Serves Great Food

Activities and riding are great, but one thing that guests comment about it the quality and variety of food. Some of the options include Prime Rib Night, Southwest Night, French Night, Cowboy Night (steaks), and Angler Night (trout and salmon). Depending on the cuisine, meals may be served plated or buffet style.  We offer two choices for dinner each night as well as accommodate dietary restrictions, requests, and a kids option.  Once a week we do an open fire cookout in dutch ovens.

Great food is a key draw to any dude ranch, especially cookouts, making cuisine one of the 8 Reasons to Take a Dude Ranch Vacation

One guest raved: “We can’t say enough about the food. It’s simple, but outstanding. Lots of choices per meal and all were hearty, fresh and very appreciated. The chef even made whip cream for our daughter to have on top of the chocolate chip pancakes. THANK YOU. All of the servers were friendly and took the time to get to know all of the guests.”

BBQ ribs served up family style are one of the 8 Reasons to Take a Dude Ranch Vacation.

8. Exploring Nature and Seeing Wildlife

Dude ranches are all about the outdoors and usually located in peaceful spots with scenic views. An isolated retreat deep in the Gros Ventre River Valley, Goosewing marks the entry point to a protected, pristine wilderness. We are located 40 miles northeast of Jackson, Wyoming in the Bridger-Teton National Forest, bordering the Gros Ventre Wilderness. Our remote location allows for excellent horseback riding, fantastic scenery, and many opportunities to spot wildlife.

One guest wrote: “Each cabin is allocated with a Ranger for your personal use. There are endless roads, trails and areas to explore at your convenience. We had a blast packing up a small lunch and visiting the river, the lake and the overlooks per the staffs recommendations. Our daughter loved this part of the trip and we would love to have explored more of the area if we hadn’t spent so much time on the horses!”

One of the 8 Reasons to Take a Dude Ranch Vacation: Polaris Rangers (UTVs) are a great way to explore the surrounding areas of a dude ranch.

So share with us in the comments: what would be most appealing about a dude ranch to you and your family or group?

Notes from the Ranch: Happy Thanksgiving!

Even though we are not a year-round ranch here at Goosewing Ranch, we have been busy making preparations for next year. And now that it is Thanksgiving week, we can take a breath and take time to be thankful for the past year and for all of you, our beloved guests and friends. As we enter into this season to be thankful, we share some of our gratitude and welcome you to do the same. 

Well, friends, it’s the time of year where we give thanks for all our good fortune and express gratitude for everything we have been blessed with. As the week of Thanksgiving is here, we have some holiday wishes to extend.

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving!  The skies are bright clear blue today and the air is cold, and all the leaves are gone from the trees like the guests from the ranch.  Tis’ the season to be thankful. With all the obstacles 2018 has thrown our way, we know we still have so much to be thankful for.

2018 was quite the challenge (thanks to the Gros Ventre River changing course), but we also learned what we are made of and how much it can bring us all together.

We are most thankful for family.  Of course, our immediate families and especially those of us whose families are ever growing. But also our extended families from our staff to our guests.  Each person holds a special place in our hearts, and we are thankful to have so many wonderful memories shared with many families.

From our family…

Jackson Hole Family Reunion

…to yours!

Grateful for Our 2018 Season

We just finished the last of our autumn projects and have the ranch closed up tight.  Wow, what a season and autumn it has been. We have been so very fortunate that the weather allowed us to complete many projects, giving us a head start to the 2019 season.  

Look who was in charge: Jack, the son of our very own Amy and Randy.

We do have snow on the ground, and we also have great wildlife all around us. As the people become scarce, the wildlife really take over. We have seen bears (both black bears and grizzly bears), wolves, elk and moose.

Check out this wolf track we found in the snow.

 

Most of the deer and pronghorn have migrated out of the area. I think that’s our cue to do the same and settle in for a long winter’s nap!

So from our ranch to your home, we wish everyone a safe and happy Thanksgiving!