Story from JPG Magazine

By Larry Finn 10 July 2008
We decided to take a trip out of the ordinary last year. Instead of the repetition of the crowded amusement parks, commercialized zoos, or fighting the multitude of inexperienced boaters and jet skiers at the local recreational lakes, we decided to go to a dude ranch. We searched around the web to see what our options were, and found a lot of them to be commercialized and non personable. Growing up in New Mexico and knowing there are thousands of miles of open ranges and many large cattle ranches we happened upon the Burntwell Guest Ranch outside the town of Ruidoso. We were intrigued by this ranch after realizing they only book two families at a time so we knew it would be a very personalized style of vacation. After driving 14 hours to reach the ranch, (the anticipation was starting to wear on our girls), we drove down the last 25 miles of dirt road which lead us to the main guest house at the ranch. We were totally amazed at the hospitality and the quality of the amenities after being greeted by the owners Kim and Patricia Chesser and being shown around. Apparently this ranch used to be a flourishing cattle and sheep ranch with over twelve hundred head, but with the drought in the west and the coyotes and mountain lion population on the rise, the owners decided it was time to change their way of life on the ranch. What made this vacation so special was the fact that there are no TV’s, internet connections, telephones, and no outside disturbances to distract you from enjoying the ranch life. We found it sort of amusing that without all of the technological toys that our girls are used to, they stayed completely busy just roping, playing horseshoes, taking care of the horses, and learning from Patricia and Kim, what living in the country is all about. We really hit it off with the other family as well, and have made a new set of friends that we keep in touch with. All in all if you really want a different sort of vacation away from the lines and noises of cities and commercialized playgrounds, book a stay with your family at the Burtwell Ranch and step back in time, and see for yourself what you have been missing out on and give your family a vacation that they will remember for a lifetime! PS….I never realized how tough it was to ride a horse and be the photographer……ha ha………

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