by Julie Bielenberg
Reopened in the fall of 2018, this boutique dude and guest ranch is a must for a families who want to try a dude ranch experience for the first time, but aren’t sure if a week-long commitment is on the agenda. The ranch offers a rare two-night minimum stay compared to most ranches, and also has B&B offerings. This ranch also recently changed its operations to become a year-round resort, offering even more options for families during school breaks.
The dude ranch has a homestead that can sleep up to six guests, great for families or multi-generational travelers. There are two casitas with two twin beds in each, along with eight lodge rooms with either full, queen or king beds.
All meals are included with plenty of snacks in between to keep the most active ones satisfied. Most meals are served family-style in an original adobe ranch building from the 1920s. During the warmer season or nice days in winter, meals are served outdoors on a sprawling patio with outdoor grill.
Daily horseback riding is included with all stays and most rides leave at 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. Some days, families are given the option to work cattle in the ranch’s outdoor arena. Make sure to request the “mini Grand Canyon” trail, where horses swerve between dried up river beds four feet high. It’s always a thrill for riders of all levels.
There’s an onsite pool and outdoor hot tub. Another of the ranch’s original buildings serves as a large gathering space with bar for adult beverages or sodas. There’s also a small library of Western classics and children’s books to borrow, and loads of board games and a checker/chess table.
Wickenburg is only a 10-minute drive from the ranch, and is a historic Western town with a Smithsonian museum dedicated to Western culture and an exceptional, hands-on kids experience on the bottom level.
Fun Fact: Hollywood actor Val Kilmer’s mother owned Kay El Bar for several years and Val himself rode the trails when he was younger!
Our Editor Loves
- All-inclusive rates
- Desert location and vistas
- Outdoor pool and hot tub
- All Inclusive Rates
- Horse Back Riding
- Dude Ranch
- Family Room 5+
- Free Wi-Fi
- Game Room
- Onsite Dining