I hope this message finds you all safe, healthy and hopefully enjoying some nice spring weather wherever you may be. In Shell, after several weeks of warm weather which spoiled us, on Easter Sunday we went back to winter with snow and cold temperatures. It was not very welcome! However, in April the cold weather never lasts long, and we are back to sunshine and warmth for a while.
This Sunday, April 5, would have been the day we greet guests for the first week of our 2020 season. Of course, that is not happening, which leaves all of us at The Hideout very sad.
We have had to cancel the first few weeks of our season and reschedule our guests to later dates. The way it looks now, we don’t anticipate guests visiting the ranch soon, and are taking it week by week as this COVID-19 pandemic unfolds. We are carefully watching travel bans as well as our federal, state and local regulations……and of course are using our common sense!
Though we have a tremendous amount of lost revenue, this communication is not about complaining. We are fortunate to live and work in a very beautiful and remote location. There is plenty of work outside and inside for all of us to stay busy. We keep our distance and follow all the rules. But the thing we regret the most is not being able to share all this beauty and our horses with our guests and riding buddies.
Let’s be honest – most folks come to The Hideout to ride all day, every day.
There are, however, some supportive family members and friends who might tag along on one horse-lover’s vacation but have interests that lie in other places. Perhaps they want to spend a week reading and relaxing on the spacious front porch of their cabin. Maybe they prefer to do a half-day ride and then trap shoot or fly fish in the afternoon, or perhaps they are most interested in seeing Wyoming back country while being toured around the Big Horn Mountains in our famous “Red Dragon” SUV to an adventurous or romantic picnic lunch destination. Some folks might even want to spend an afternoon in downtown historic Cody before heading to the Cody Nite Rodeo! We also have mountain bikes available at the lodge as well as staff who are knowledgeable about local hiking trails if you prefer outdoor adventure on foot.
Fortunately, the possibilities at The Hideout are endless when it comes to activities – what do you want to do during your time in or out of the saddle?
When we posted a quick photo of this beautiful dessert to The Hideout Facebook Page on Tuesday, we had lots of recipe requests! After some kind words to the kitchen, the ladies have passed their knowledge on to the rest of us… enjoy!
Never been to a rodeo? Well, here’s your chance! In addition to the countless other opportunities and activities we offer to our guests, our wranglers take interested folks in to see the Cody Nite Rodeo each week. The excursion kicks off with an afternoon stroll through historic downtown Cody where you can watch staged gunfights, shop at the local boutiques (the Custom Cowboy Shop is a Hideout favorite) and perhaps even set aside a few hours to tour the Buffalo Bill Historical Center.
After you’ve seen the sights and maybe purchased that perfect new pair of boots or hat, you can mosey on over to a delicious Western dinner at The Proud Cut Saloon where they serve up their “kick-ass cowboy cuisine.” Surrounded by four walls of vintage rodeo photographs and several hunting trophies, you can enjoy an authentic Wyoming dinner in style while swapping stories from your week with wranglers and other guests.
The nightly rodeo show starts at 8:00pm and features local cowboys and cowgirls trying to beat the clock in all of the classic rodeo events like bareback riding, tie down roping, team roping, bull riding, steer wrestling, saddle bronc riding and barrel racing.
Bull riding at the Cody Nite Rodeo
For those of you who haven’t been to a rodeo before, this is definitely a great way to experience the town of Cody while taking part in a true Western tradition! After the fun has ended, our wranglers have you home before midnight so you can be up and ready for another day of riding and adventure on the range here at The Hideout. Read more ›
Although the 2011-12 Wyoming winter was not as long as the previous one, like every other season we areeagerly looking forward to welcoming more of our 2012 “early season” Hideout Guests.
We work through the entire winter to ensure that we are ready for our guests, and let us be honest…we don’t see that many people living in a town of 83 souls on the West slope of the Big Horns (with the nearest sizable town dozens of miles away.) The route that traverses The Big Horn Mountains at 9,000 feet is often closed for traffic due to snowfall, cutting us off from the Eastern side of the range.
Needless to say, in addition to being eager to do what is imbedded in our deepest soul (pampering and taking care of guests and ensuring that they have a great vacation experience,) we are thrilled to have the opportunity to strike up new conversations, exchange experiences and exercise our speech again now that guests have started to regularly arrive here at The Hideout. Read more ›
Here at The Hideout, we have a special sort of announcement this week; our good friend and guest, Mr. Dean Ross, has penned and published the fictional novel West of Sheridan. This honest chronicle of two men traveling through northern Wyoming after a solar event destroys the nation’s population and access to modern technology, basically landing them in the modern day/future version of the “Old Wild West.”
The back cover explains, “West of Sheridan is fast-paced, adventurous, and captivating, while embodying humor, romance and inspiration. Above all, it is a literary illustration of character and moral fiber; a compelling look inside the heads of two very distinctive, contradictory men and what drives them.”
What’s so special to us, other than Ross’ success as an author, is that this exciting story takes place in our neck of the woods with familiar landscapes, towns and general geography. Mr. Ross tells us that he gained much of his inspiration for the setting of West of Sheridan from his time spent here at The Hideout as a repeat guest.
Mr. Ross was kind enough to send us a few boxes with signed copies of the novel to stock in our gift shop – the handwritten inscription in each title page reads, “The Hideout is where this adventure started for me. Hope your adventure is the same.” Well, shucks, Mr. Ross – we’re so glad we could help your creative flow from our little corner of Shell, Wyo!
We were also extremely honored to find a very special “thank you” from Mr. Ross in the afterword of West of Sheridan:
Phew! It’s only April and we’ve hit the ground running.
On our third week of the 2012 guest season and already looking onward to the fourth, it’s becoming quite clear that there is no such thing as a “typical” week here at The Hideout. So far, our guests have taken lessons in the arena, seen fossilized dinosaur tracks, vaccinated and wrestled calves at a traditional ranch branding, ridden to the heights of Devil’s Leap, gathered a few hundred cows out on BLM land and next week’s guests are coming to The Hideout for our increasingly popular Authentic Horsemanship clinic week.
What a good lookin’ group!
They have also enjoyed fine dining at The Hideout Lodge, gone trap shooting, caught a fish or two on the waters of Shell, lived the lives of cowboys during the day and lives of well-attended guests in the evening as they enjoyed wine, good company, a game of pool or two and a soft pillow at the end of it all. Read more ›
Photo courtesy of Hideout guest and photographer Gene Devine
Bluebirds have been spotted, the deer are migrating towards the slope of the Big Horn Mountains and calving season is all but finished. Puppies, lambs, calves and foals can be seen running through the pastures as fast as their little legs will carry them. All of these things, plus dozens more, are signs that spring has officially arrived in Shell, Wyo. Soon the branding pens will be full, the smell of barbecue and burning branding irons will mingle in the air and our guest season will be in full swing.
Spring is a rewarding season for us here at The Hideout for so many reasons. We are able to open our ranch to guests again, see old friends (both guests and returning staff) and hit the trails with our equine friends who are more than happy to get out of the pasture and back to work. The season helps us remember why we spend those long winter months in solitude -so we can be surrounded by the beauty of the valley and warm friendship, enthusiasm and energy of people from all over the world once the thaw has finished.
Once the buds form on the trees and the grass turns from dusty yellow to vibrant green, we know it’s time for another great season here at The Hideout. We hope to see all of our old friends and guests out on the range and trail this season, and we’re also hoping to see some new faces out there!
Happy spring to you all and happy trails from all of us here at The Hideout!