The Hideout Blog

The Hideout Blog

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:

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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 ›

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Devine Images

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!

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“No worries” is a phrase we like to use to describe our guest experience here at The Hideout Lodge & Guest Ranch.

An important part of our worry-free philosophy is being all-inclusive. This means that you know exactly how much a vacation at The Hideout will cost you. It means no surprises, no discussions with the kids or family members about wanting to do this or that or turning out your pockets when checking out at the end of the week.

All-inclusive packages mean that you don’t need to blow your vacation budget to please the different needs of your family or traveling companions once they are at the ranch. It means that, when you book your vacation, you know that almost anything your heart could desire is included in the rates. Our rates include: lodging, food, wine with dinner, cocktail hours, all riding instruction and cattle work (under the safe and watchful eyes of our Hideout wranglers and cowboys,) horsemanship and stockmanship clinics, all non-riding activities like trapshooting, unguided fishing, canoeing, 4×4 tours, roping lessons, hiking, biking, ranch tours, etc., all gratuities & taxes and a DVD with pictures of from each day of your stay.

What is not included? Well, if you decide to get a massage, go on a rodeo excursion with our wranglers in Cody, Wyo, take a day of professionally-guided fly fishing or purchase any items from our well-stocked gift shop it will be an extra fee.

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“No worries” also means that The Hideout Lodge & Guest Ranch is a safe place for you and your family. We hire our staff based on The 3 C’s of Character, Conduct and Competence and train them well. They are responsible and will never put you in danger during any of our activities. The Big Horn Basin and mountains, where we are located, are also some of the safest places around with no crime, little traffic and no nervous or frustrated people riding in the mountains… we are also grizzly-free, contrary to many other ranches in Northern Wyoming. Read more ›

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Some people think that, unless you stay in the posh town of Jackson, a Wyoming vacation is a rustic cowboy-style retreat where you have to rough and tough it out in the name of authenticity. While that might be true for some guest ranches, this has never been the case at The Hideout Lodge & Guest Ranch. Our cabins, lodge, and culinary experience can compete with the best of resorts worldwide. In addition, guests are afforded the opportunity to ride our top-notch, well-mannered equines during genuine cattle work and trail rides on our 300,000  scenically diverse acres.

Upscale Experience, Scenic Riding

For those guests who are seeking even more luxury than the standard accommodations offer, we offer The Hideout Homes. Located across from The Hideout’s main property and within 10 minutes walking distance, The Hideout Homes were built in 2007 with no expenses spared in terms of the quality of architecture, interior design, amenities and a million-dollar view. Read more ›

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What is “togethering?” Well, it is one of the most precious words and concepts these days for families who spend increasing amounts of time apart. Whether family members live across the country or world from each other or parents spend the week traveling for work and only see loved ones on weekends, many families are faced with having very little time to spend together. In fact, it’s fair to say that time is becoming the most precious resource available to families. Finding moments to spend together are dear and locations that foster a family environment are becoming even scarcer. It would seem that family vacations are the only blocks of time during the year where loved ones and relatives can indulge in “togethering.”


Where to go to spend quality time together, you ask? Not every hectic resort, hotel or cruise ship offers the right atmosphere for this. It’s necessary to have activities for everyone, parents and children alike, to take part in together – not separate facilities or programs where each age group breaks off to have individual experiences. Read more ›

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Family vacations are increasingly important in this day and age when more families living in scattered locations across North America and the world. With time becoming one of the most important limited resources in today’s hectic world, family vacations are becoming increasingly precious times where everybody comes together to bond, relax, experience and learn new things (most importantly learning about each other.)

The Hideout Lodge & Guest Ranch is an upscale guest ranch limited to 25 guests and located on an authentic 300,000 acre working cattle ranch in the remote Shell, Wyo. The ranch is established in one of the most beautiful and rare settings you can imagine. This not only makes for great family pictures, but also instills a sense of peace and relaxation. The effect of the environment, the scenery, remoteness, casual family atmosphere, altitude, participation in riding, cattle work and other activities makes for a great bonding experience; everyone is less tempted to bury their attention in electronic games, computers, cell phones, etc. You have the opportunity to appreciate each other and share experiences “in the moment.” These special experiences will remind parents and grandparents of memorable moments shared with family in the past, which they pass on to their own family and grandchildren  in a multi-generational vacation tradition.


Come to The Hideout for an unforgettable family vacation!

Families can experience working cattle and ride with real cowboys and seasoned wranglers who are eager to share and teach “the cowboy lifestyle” in a safe environment – this job is still being done the way it was done many years ago. They will take you on breathtaking trail rides in diversity of scenic settings. You can learn as a family how to ride, communicate with and think like horses and cattle and how to handle these animals with respect. If you get worn out by riding, you can go hiking, biking, explore wildlife, learn how to fly-fish, visit some of the dinosaur dig sites and even assist a day in digging up some real fossils. Dad and the boys can learn how to trap shoot – only to find that mom and the girls will beat them at it!

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After partnering up with Top 50 Ranches for a 4-night giveaway here at The Hideout, a winner has been chosen! The lucky gal that will be joining us for her dream vacation this season is Farrah R., a mother of 3 sons who rode as a child and is looking to get back in touch with her passion for horses. We’re very excited about the outcome of the contest and can’t wait to meet Farrah this season!

After seeing the Top 50 Ranches contest on Twitter, Farrah knew it was the perfect opportunity to get back in the saddle after many years of not riding. As a child, she grew up with grandparents who were serious horsemen; they gave Farrah her first horse, an Arabian named Zemar, when she was seven years old. With the guidance and knowledge of her grandparents, Farrah went on to own and care for two other horses at her parents’ Michigan home.

As she entered her teens, Farrah admits that her interest in horses faded away and she spent quite a few years out of the saddle until her 2006 honeymoon. Upon recently losing both of her grandparents, the people who inspired Farrah’s love for horses at a young age, she decided to enter the Top 50/Hideout contest. She explains, “I feel like this is my time to say goodbye to [my grandparents] as well as rediscover my love of riding.”

We are thrilled to be hosting Farrah and can’t wait to help her get reacquainted with her lost love of riding and horses!


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As a result of guest feedback over the last five years, we started to lay out a concept and ideas for a more professional equestrian program to manage The Hideout’s horse and riding program. We started to upgrade our horses, tack and hiring more wranglers with a solid formal and practical equestrian background and an open mind when it comes to practicing good horsemanship.

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A missing link in our program and concept was a head wrangler and trainer who not   only would support this concept, but at the same was a truly talented and natural horseperson. We brought in Ramon Castro who immediately started to reshape our program and step up the quality, professionalism and horse culture at The Hideout. Ramon participated in The Extreme Mustang Makeover and started a cooperation with The Mustang Heritage Foundation. Last year Marijn, Ramon and Peter started a dedicated Authentic Horses & Training, LLC, a company specializing in the above. Read more ›

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Our little town of Shell, Wyo., may be small in stature with a population of only 50 people, but our ideal location at the foot of the Big Horn Mountains provides endless opportunities to explore and adventure. Within town limits are several must-see locations including dinosaur footprints, raging rapids in Shell Canyon and ancient sedimentary formations. If you happen to drive in to The Hideout and find yourself wanting to take a half-day off from riding, there are some fantastic places to visit within a few minutes of our ranch!

Just west on U.S. Highway 14 is the turn off for the Red Gulch/Alkalai National Back Country Byway, home to the impressive Red Gulch Dinosaur Tracksite. These rare dinosaur footprints, publicly accessible at all times, were discovered in 1997. Viewers can get up-close and personal with ancient footprints and imagine what it was like to walk along the Middle Jurassic shoreline alongside other dinosaurs. These particular footprints are more than just cool – they have the potential to alter current scientific views on the Sundance formation and Middle Jurassic period, as many scientists originally believed the Shell area was entirely underwater at that time. Read more ›

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