Western Ranch Activities:
Most people come for the western riding, but there is plenty to do at Concho Hills Guest Ranch, both in and out of the saddle!
Our activities focus on our western heritage, and our guest’s desires. The activities at Concho Hills gives you the chance to experience western ranch life that closely resembles that of the Old West. Cowboys have not gone away….you just can’t see’em from the highway!
A lot of the “fun of doing” is learning how; especially learning from our mistakes. Many of our activities will require some skill development. So give yourself some time to learn something new. We’ll share our knowledge, you provide the determination and effort. We’ll all cheer each other to success!
By the way, socializing is a popular activity in the western lifestyle. With your closest neighbor miles away, any chance to get together is appreciated. Riding in the saddle, at the table, or under the stars, our ranch provides the place to meet and socialize with people of similar interest, and maybe establish a lifelong friendship.
Some activities you may choose to try include:
Most guests come to the ranch for horseback riding or to learn horseback riding. Regardless of your riding experience, we believe you will have a fabulous time riding our horses, from exploring the range to getting the job done. At Concho Hills you will be riding “ranch style” only. That means we steer with our legs and ride with loose reigns. Don’t know how? As long as you want to learn we will be thrilled to teach you. Our horses have been trained to work cattle and help us with our work, so we need our hands for doing stuff. We will also teach you the secret of shortening the distance between two points…ride it with a friend!
Click here to learn more about our remuda.
Cattle are rounded up and “worked” (branded, tagged, and vaccinated) in the spring or fall. They are also gathered for shipping. Some cattle activities are strenuous while others, such as filling syringes, assembling ear tags, and acting as “gates” do not require physical strength. But all jobs are important and necessary. Some find it fun to just watch.
Mostly, we want the cattle to eat, enjoy life and get fat. But there is still plenty of ranching activities to do such as: locating and identifying cattle, seeing that they are healthy and treating those who aren’t, riding and fixing fence, and checking wells and watering tanks.
After learning how to “read” and move a cow, you can help move the herd to new water or grazing. All of this is done while observing nature and exploring what’s around the bend. You will lean why cowboys love their lifestyle and there is no telling what you may find…. even yourself.
Want to learn to rope? Keeping the loop open and roping what you aiming at requires a little practice. Everyone can participate because we begin on the ground.
The whip is a useful tool for moving livestock or just great entertainment. There are dozens of cracks to learn, and then we work on accuracy. Like roping, we start on the ground so participation isn’t limited to riding.
Ever wonder how Stone Age people brought home dinner? Try your hand at throwing a dart with a throwing stick (atlatl) like the Paleo-Indians. Great fun and some get pretty good at it. Most are thankful that their dinner doesn’t depend upon their dart tossing skills!
At Concho Hills we also have a small range where we can practice pistol shooting, rifle, or shotgun. (Ammunition cost is extra.) We do require certification of a basic firearms safety class or higher. Don’t have a certification? We can provide that! The certified NRA basic pistol course takes about a day to complete, including the qualification shooting, and the NRA certified course is included in our all-inclusive rate.
We always get a kick when the guests look up at night and gasp in awe of our night skies. There are no city lights to interfere with the viewing, and the Milky Way is bright during the new moon. Come see the stars that one cannot see around a city or town. Star Gazing is enjoyed by everyone.
Regardless of the season, there is always something beautiful or interesting to photograph. From scenery to critters, photography will help you remember your adventure. So bring your camera and take all the pictures you want.
Rodeos and Ropings
Rodeo in Spanish means “roundup.” When the cattlemen used to round up the cattle for brandings or to move the cattle for shipment, cowboys and representatives from each ranch came together to do the work and protect the interest of “their brand.” When these men got together, stories and demonstrations of their skills were talked about and displayed. Throw in the opportunity to show off, coupled with a little wager, and the makings of modern rodeo was born.
In summer, local ropings and rodeos (where local cowboys and cowgirls compete against each other) still exists. If you’re interested, we are happy to attend, at no additional charge, to watch these events.
Fire Side Chats:
Most every night we have a fire, either inside in the living room or outside at the campfire. It’s a time to share your experiences and to enjoy those experiences of others. If you can play the guitar, harmonica, native flute, or sing a song, it will be great to have you share your talents with us.
We are very proud of our country, our western history, and the men and women that created it. We can offer tour activities away from the ranch to nearby historical sites. You can visit American Indian sites where ancient man lived and settled as long ago as 5000 B.C. or more recent times where the Piro, Apache, and Navajo lived. You can visit sites of old western towns like Magdalena, Kelly, or Chloride. One can visit museums, shops, or saloons in these places and learn a bit about our area and its history…a glimpse of life “in the day.”
Look at our “History” page to see some of the historic people, places and events that have occurred in the area.