5 Places to Visit in The New Decade
If you're interested in the culture and ranching lifestyle of the American West, here are a few places you should add to your travel list for the new decade. These are some of the places we're planning to visit too when we're not working on bringing more bling your way.
- A Dude Ranch. Whether you prefer glamping or actually getting down 'n' dirty by getting involved in day-to-day activities of a working ranch, a stay at one of western ranches can't be missed. Most states with a thriving ranching industry have several to choose from. Here, in our neck of the woods, try The Resort at Paws Up for an ultimate glamping experience, or if you'd like something more modest, Bar W Guest Ranch near Glacier National Park is a good one. No matter western state you're traveling to, you can find local guest ranches by simply plugging in "guest ranch" or "dude ranch" into your favorite search engine.
- Talking about National Parks, you should visit at least one this decade. From the current total of 62 nationwide, the great majority are in the west. Apart from the Glacier and Yellowstone, we've got 7 more in Montana alone. Find the rest by visiting the National Park Service website.
- Cowboy Poetry Gathering. If you've never been to one, you've got to try it. You'll discover that there's much more depth to the ranching culture than you've ever imagined. Here in Montana, we'll be gathering cowboy poets and musicians for the 35th year in August. Find one in your state of choice, or visit the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko, Nevada.
- Rodeo. If you can't make it to National Finals Rodeo, the biggest gathering of cowboys and cowgirls for the year, try your local one. Even if it doesn't feature world class rodeo athletes, you'll still have plenty of fun and learn a lot about the sport of rodeo.
- Horse Refuge. If you're a horse lover, find a local horse rescue to visit and, if you want to go even further, get involved in supporting their operations. Almost every western state has at least one. We at Buckaroo Bling support Freedom Horse Farm near Kalispell. If you'd like to find one in your area, take to the search engines and look up "horse refuge" or "horse rescue."
What other must-see western attractions would you add to this list? Tell us in the comments below. Want some more ideas? Check out this Pinterest board.