One of my favourite mountain hideaways in the U.S.; Lone Mountain Ranch is a luxurious retreat, just beyond the border of Yellowstone National Park and nestled into the Rockies near the popular skiing town of Big Sky. Whether you’re enjoying the region’s legendary skiing in the winter or exploring breathtaking mountain scenery in the summer, the diverse range of year-round adventures at your fingertips is one of the most exciting attractions of the region.
Lone Mountain offers a typical and authentic ‘dude ranch’ experience that you’d expect from the American West. Channel your inner cowboy and follow in the footsteps of the old-western dudes who would ride horses, pan for gold, fish, hunt and camp out in the mountains. The Ranch house, over 100 years old and with its own fascinating history, is one of ‘National Geographic’s Unique Lodges of the World’. Not an accolade doled out haplessly; this recognition is very much deserved, and since its renovation in 2016, the Ranch House maintains an old-Montana feel, whilst providing guests with the very best modern amenities. We’ll arrange your stay in one of the gorgeous and cosy private cabins, peacefully tucked away in the forest and beautifully appointed in modern Alpine style to give guests all the desired comforts on return from a day enjoying the great outdoors. Each cabin is unique with varying sizes and styles to choose from, so call us to discuss which nest is the best fit for you. Picture traditional wooden paneling, soft rugs, warm colours, high ceilings, luxurious beds, wooden stoves and large windows opening out to unbroken forest views. Many of the cabins have spacious porches with authentic swing-chairs to admire the surrounding nature.
You’ll be welcomed with warm, traditional western hospitality and the fantastic team of ‘ranch hands’ will assist you in anything from making bookings or curating the perfect trail map, to arranging private excursions with expert naturalist guides and ensuring that your experience is seamless from start to finish.
With over 80 miles of world class Nordic trails and downhill slopes on your doorstep, Big Sky offers some of the most incredible skiing in North America. Along with skiing, Lone Mountain Ranch offers an eye-watering roster of year-round adventures to satisfy thrill seekers and nature lovers alike. Crystal-clear icy mountain rivers lend themselves perfectly to fly-fishing, canoeing and white-water rafting surrounded by beautiful scenery of towering lodgepole pine forests. You can hike, mountain bike and ride across the mountain valleys and lush grasslands speckled with wildflowers, try fat-tire biking, snow-shoeing and dog-sledding, all with local mountain guides. There are also plenty of opportunities to relax with yoga and massages, either out in nature or in the rejuvenating wellness cabin, B-K. Families particularly love Lone Mountain for its wide range of activities and flexibility. This beautiful setting appeals greatly to painters and photographers taking inspiration from vast natural surroundings, and looking to capture the changing shades of light and colour throughout the day or as the seasons pass. With so many wonderful outdoors experiences to enjoy, I’d recommend spending a minimum of a week here to explore the spectacular Montana wilderness and still allow time to relax and recharge before returning home. There are various packages that we can book for you at the ranch with meals and activities included to fit your particular interests.
I found that one of the most wonderful, and perhaps unexpected, aspects to Lone Mountain Ranch was the exceptional fine dining, with all menus overseen by acclaimed Executive Chef, Eric Gruber. The ranch beautifully prepares farm-to-table cuisine, but also offers a real range of dining experiences from eating a delicious BBQ under the stars by a glowing campfire, to riding out to a gourmet picnic overlooking spectacular mountain vistas, or enjoying a hearty meal in the lively Horne & Cantle saloon as you toe-tap to live western music. My personal favourite experience – great for families or a romantic evening – was a magical horse-drawn sleigh ride to the legendary North Fork Cabin, picturesquely-lit by oil-lamps, where we enjoyed a delicious dinner of prime ribs and live music. This is incredibly atmospheric and an absolute must during your stay.
Every time I explore a new destination, whether it’s on an adventure holiday in Peru or a luxury beach escape in the Indian Ocean, I return home full of excitement to share the amazing sights I have seen. Through my own experiences I have developed a love of helping others experience the great wonders of the world; truly getting under the skin of the extraordinary destinations that are at your fingertips. Getting the details right, from which hotel is perfectly located for exploring away from the crowds, to which local guide is most knowledgeable on history or culture or art, is of paramount importance to me. I am constantly seeking out new and exciting experiences and exploring off the beaten track to ensure my clients are receiving the best and most honest first-hand advice.
Take a look at my travel diaries for food for thought on your next trip...