You haven't experienced the true beauty of America until you've stepped foot onto the rolling ranch hills of Wyoming under the sprawling Western sky--this I am sure of. Brush Creek Ranch in Saratoga, Wyoming is absolutely captivating. Set on more than 30,000 lush acres, the seclusion of the ranch provides a peace you simply cannot tap into when in the city. Maybe it's the uninterrupted, fiery-colored sunsets, or the endless sea of stars at night, or the sound of the horses galloping through the field carried by the wind that does it. Whatever it is, there's a tranquility and deep connection to nature that you'll feel from the moment your boots land onto Brush Creek Ranch's soil.
The ranch accommodations cater to any request provided, whether you're a large family looking to stay together in a cabin residence, or a couple seeking a romantic getaway for two in a lodge room, Brush Creek Ranch offers rustic, log cabin-inspired abodes for every adventure.
After taking in the breathtaking mountain views from our cabin, Chris and I embarked on the four-mile Medicine Bow Hike through the stunning Medicine Bow National Forest. The array of activities in nature is seemingly endless at Brush Creek Ranch, from wingshooting and archery, to rock climbing and golf. You'd have to set up camp for months in order to experience every activity offered throughout the property. Chris jumps at any chance he gets to fly fish, so he was thrilled to be led by fishing guide Dan through the Upper Platte River--one of the most sought after fishing destinations in the world. While Chris was out on the water, I reconnected with one of my greatest loves of all time--horseback riding. While Brush Creek Ranch offers trail rides for all skill levels, I opted for a private riding lesson with my beautiful horse, Stormy, followed by a lesson in barrel racing!
One of the largest and most important components of wellness is nutrition, so during our week at the ranch we toured many of the one-of-a-kind facilities that contribute to their sustainably-focused cuisine, like their 20,000 square foot greenhouse where they grow 30 different types of vegetables, totaling 100,000 pounds of food grown every year. Nothing quite compares to sampling produce fresh off the vine! I personally loved walking through their Goatel, which is where their family of Alpine goats live on the farm--one of the highest quality dairy breeds. The milk produced by these goats is used to make scratch-made ice cream at the Medicine Bow Creamery!
Considering the nature of all the outdoor activities offered, we were able to enjoy the experience of being one with nature while also reaping the physical benefits of getting our bodies moving. I hiked out to one of Brush Creek Ranch's Yurts, a 700-foot circular tent, for a yoga session in the wilderness. What is already a centering and spiritual practice was made even more tranquil by the surrounding 360-degree view of lush foothills and open sky. Afterward, I joined up with Chris as we hiked to Falcon's Peak, one of several hiking trails offered. You can choose an easy trail like Brush Creek, consisting of mostly flatlands, or an advanced option like Barrett Ridge, which covers the property's highest terrain. You can choose confidently knowing whichever path you take, you'll be led to awe-inspiring views.
After hours hiking the beautiful trails of Brush Creek Ranch's sprawling grounds, I retreated to the Trailhead Spa for a little rejuvenation. I enjoyed the Medicine Bow Massage, which utilizes warm oils in combination with aromatherapy and a pressure preference of your choosing, followed by the End of the Trail Exfoliation treatment, an exfoliating salt scrub made from essential oils and salts.
As the sun began to descend, we threw on our finest cowboy boots and headed to the Cheyenne Club for dinner. The history alone of this property is impressive. Dating back to the mid 1800's, Cheyenne Club was the exclusive club of the elite, where socialites, political figures, and industrial giants attended to dine on world-class cuisine, spirits, and cigars. Today this reimagined property is the home to their incredible seed-to-table dining experience, where Chef Angus sources all ingredients from the grounds’ expansive farmland, 20,000 square foot greenhouse and Wagyu beef cattle.
After dinner, we were escorted to the Spirit Vault through a secret entrance. The Spirit Vault is the ultimate destination for whiskey lovers (Chris was in heaven!), as they pour from over 100 selections of rare whiskeys and bourbons which line the walls of the vault, each behind its own "locked door". When you step foot into the Spirit Vault, it's as if you've been transported to a speakeasy from the 1930's. Black lacquered walls flow seamlessly into a black lacquered ceiling, and hundreds of high-dollar whiskeys and bourbons are tucked into their own nooks within the wall, where they're backlit to illuminate their beautiful caramel hues.
After sipping on the greenhouse margarita at the Saloon or sampling a tasting (or two) at the Brush Creek Brewery, Brush Creek Ranch also offers a creekside dining experience, where the chef prepares your meal over open flames as you sit alongside a soothing babbling brook. One of the most impressive tastings we've ever had was with their Lead Sommelier, Gretchen Allen, who led us through a private, 100-point wine tasting featuring exclusive varietals from all over the world in their 94-yard tunnel. Gretchen guided us through a tasting including a 2016 Dominus, 2013 Paul Hobbs BTK Vineyard, 2016 Joseph Phelps Insignia, and a 2010 Shafer Hillside Select, followed by a 2009 Chateau Cos Labory Bordeaux to compare what we had tasted in the American wines. This was truly a one-of-a-kind, intimate experience!
An experience at Brush Creek Ranch will leave even the dedicated city dweller dreaming of a life in the American West.