Spring Round-Up 2017 Deer Valley Ranch

welcome To Deer Valley

All of us here at Deer Valley are preparing for you, our valued guests, and your upcoming summer stay with us. Each area of the ranch, from kitchen, housekeeping, and maintenance, to office, corral, and kids/teen programs are gearing up for YOUR arrival! As our summer staff arrive little by little over the next two weeks, the excitement of summer is building. And mostly it’s because we are excited about meeting you and having the opportunity to serve you. Our desire and prayer is that you and your family experience the majestic beauty, the memory-making adventures, and the get-away-from-it-all rest that the ranch provides. All of us look forward to having each of you with us soon!

Many blessings,

-The DVR Team and Staff

Countdown to the Ranch!

Do your kids know how many days it is until they arrive at Deer Valley? Do YOU? We here at the ranch ARE counting down the days until you arrive. Even now we are making preparations so that your vacation will be an unforgettable, fun-filled Western experience! This e-newsletter is to help you better prepare for your upcoming stay at the ranch. We hope you are looking forward to your upcoming stay as much as we are looking forward to having you at Deer Valley!

Your Arrival Day

We are located about 2 1/2 hours from Denver and about 2 hours from Colorado Springs. If you are flying into either city’s airport, allow 3 hours from Denver Int’l and 2 1/4 hours from Colorado Springs. If you are driving from Denver, you can take either I-70 to the Copper Mountain exit (Hwy 91) or take 285 all the way to Nathrop. From Colorado Springs, take Hwy 24 west.

Check-in Time is 4:00pm

General Ranch Orientation is at 7:00 PM.

You are welcome to arrive a little early but thank you for understanding that your cabin/room may not be ready until 4 PM. Please check in with the office and one of our friendly office staff will verify your information. You will be given important paperwork including the Weekly Schedule.

The General Orientation which begins at 7:00 PM in Centennial Hall will provide useful information to make sure you have the best ranch experience and help you plan your week.

Returning Guests

We want to help make this your best Deer Valley vacation ever, so we ask that you please read over this newsletter. Even though you have been at the ranch before, it is VERY IMPORTANT that you still check-in with the office before you go to your cabin/room. We verify important information from you and give you the weekly schedule and other important paperwork. In the event your cabin or room is not ready, we can let you know when it will be ready. So please stop in the office upon arriving so we can welcome you back to DVR!

Horseback Riding

Horseback riding orientation is at 10:45 Sunday morning.

Horseback riding is the primary reason many of you are coming to Deer Valley. There are certainly many opportunities to ride, from a one hour instructional ride to an all day high country ride. Please be sure and attend our horseback riding orientation after dinner Sunday evening. We will also need every rider in your party to sign a waiver. Whether you are on our American Plan or our A La Carte Plan, horseback riding is an additional cost.

Horseback Riding Rates:

To give you an idea, horseback riding is $37/hour per person. Some of our longer rides are less per hour, for example the Wrangler’s Breakfast rides are $65, the Cogan’s Ranch ride-$75, the Cookout Lunch Ride-$75, the 3-hour Back Country Ride- $100, and the 5-hour Back Country ride-$160. The cost for each ride will be noted on that ride’s sign-up sheet. A few rides you might not want to miss include the Wrangler’s Breakfast Ride, the Cogan’s Ranch Ride and the All Day Ride. We’ll see you down at the corral!

Additional Opportunities

Whitewater Rafting

Whitewater Rafting: ½ Day Brown’s Canyon: $67.61 / adult, $57.86 / child 6-12

Rentals: Package #1 (Wetsuit Package) is $15 / person, Package #2 (Excludes Wetsuit) is $10 / person

NEW this year: Save Time and complete your Noah’s Ark Rafting Release Form ONLINE now!

Here is the link:

Brown's Canyon Adventure Park

Brown’s Canyon Adventure Park: $60 / adult, $54 / children


In addition to whitewater rafting, we are adding exciting new expedition adventures this summer: Rock Climbing, Paddleboarding, and Guided Fishing Expeditions with both wade and float trip options, and Overnight Backpacking. Check them out on our website!

Important Things To Remember

  • If ANY information has changed from what you put on your registration card, please call and let us know. IF YOUR NUMBERS HAVE CHANGED, it is especially important for us to know this for the purpose of planning our seating for the popular Saturday night buffet.
  • We try to honor specific accommodation requests. However, sometimes we need to make changes to better accommodate all of the families on the ranch. We want everyone to be comfortable. You will be housed in accommodations as confirmed i.e., if you were confirmed in a large cabin, then we will house you in a large cabin.
  • It is very important that we know your plans for Saturday dinner. Please check your written confirmation. If you don’t see the words “For Dinner” after your arrival date, it means you didn’t have dinner checked on your registration card and we will NOT plan on you. Please call or email us with your dinner plans and number of people in your party who will be eating Saturday dinner.
  • If you haven’t yet decided on a rate plan i.e., American Plan vs. A La Carte, note that we must finalize this upon check-in. Once you have checked in, we set up your billing with one plan or the other and cannot change it later.
  • We do NOT have laundry facilities for guests on the ranch. There are laundromats in both Buena Vista and Salida.
  • Traditionally, dude ranch stays do not include full maid service. As such, you can expect a daily towel change. A linen change is available upon request.
  • We ask that all guests staying in a cabin on the a la carte plan eat at least one meal a day with us in the lodge.
  • Our office keeps track of your meals, horseback riding, rafting and even store purchases, so there is no need to carry cash. You can settle your bill prior to your departure. If you plan on dividing up the charges, we appreciate your being responsible for deciding who pays what and then presenting us with one or more credit cards/checks.
  • To expedite the Check-Out process, we will deliver a copy of your itemized Guest Statement to your accommodation Friday morning. You can then review it before checking out in the office.
  • Gratuity is not included in your bill. We do recommend 15% to 20% of your bill as gratuity for the hard-working staff that have served you.

What To Bring

Here at 8400’ elevation, early mornings, evenings and nights are cool (40s to 50s) and days are warm (70s and 80s). We suggest dressing in layers so you can put on or take off items. There is no dress code, except shoes and shirts are required in the dining room. You are on vacation, so bring comfortable clothing and shoes. Jeans are a must and many folks wear shorts during the day.

Some of our guests like to dress with a bit of western flair for the Saturday night buffet, Sunday square dance and Thursday Western Party.

While shopping for your vacation, consider a trip to your local Goodwill. You might find hiking shoes, western boots, cowboy hats or other gear that will be inexpensive, broken in already and perfect for your week at the ranch.

Packing Checklist

  • Camera & Charger
  • Swimsuit
  • Hiking Shoes
  • Boots
  • Hats
  • Kids/Husband
  • Western "outfit"
  • Shorts
  • Wrangler Jeans
  • Tennis Shoes
  • Books
  • Beach Towels
  • Medications

What You Can Get At The Ranch

  • Sunscreen
  • Pool Towels
  • Sweatshirts/Fleece
  • First Aid Supplies
  • New Water Bottles
  • Rental Cowboy Boots
  • Fishing Gear

Plan to spend some time in our lovely Trading Post. Browse through the new apparel or browse through a book while the children pick out a toy. You will find a good selection of home décor and Deer Valley memorabilia.

Additional Charges

Most everything is included in your rate: use of our swimming pools, hot tubs and sauna, tennis court, hay rides, guided hiking, guided fishing, fishing instruction, children and teen programs and evening entertainment. The following are additional charges you should consider:

  • Your meals if you are on the a la carte rate plan in a cabin. Meal prices are listed on our web site.
  • Half Day River Rafting. See above.
  • Horseback riding: See section above.
  • Browns Canyon Adventure Park: See above. Must weigh between 50-275 lbs.
  • Babysitting: $15.00/hour for one child and $5.00/hour for each additional child. You will make arrangements with the office for scheduling and payment.
  • Fishing License: Required for age 16 and over. Non-resident five-day license is $21.00. A one day license is $9.00. We don’t sell licenses, but we can direct you to Buena Vista or Salida stores that do sell them. You can also purchase a license online before you arrive: http://cpw.state.co.us/ thingstodo/Pages/ Fishing.aspx
  • Expeditions.
  • Tax: Store purchases are 5.4%. The lodging and program part of your stay is taxed at 7.3%. Meals are taxed at 5.4%
  • Stop by and check out the latest addition to DVR, the "Saloon," an internet cafe that will serve gourmet coffee drinks, teas, and smoothies, as well as baked goods! Extra charges will apply to items.

Meet the 2017 Summer Staff

Dave and Shannon Johnson would like you to meet the wonderful individuals who will be serving you in numerous ways during your stay with us. FIRST, our summer young people...those in italics are returning staff.

Michael Backer (Omaha, NE), Caitlin Berry (Berkeley Lake, GA), Olivia Burkhart (Myerstown, PA), Johannah Couch (Glouster, OH), Micah Couch (Glouster, OH), Alyssa Fithian (Shoals, IN), Chloe Fry (Irvine, CA), Michael Guthrie (Gainesville, FL), Stacie Higgins (Fountain Valley, CA), Molly Hughes (Glen Ellyn, IL), Presley Johnson (Nathrop, CO), Annika Kraakevik (Littleton, CO), Kari Kushigemachi (Camarillo, CA), Rebecca Light (Rolla, MO), Karli Montgomery (North Platte, NE), Zach Peterson (San Diego, CA), Ian Pierron (Pisgah Forest, NC), Anna Scardina (Tulsa, OK), Jacob Scheidt (Van Wert, OH), Rebecca Sheriff (Friedens, PA), Caleb Sims (Taylorsville, KY), Samantha Skiens (Portland, OR), Penny Stehlik (Round Rock, TX), Tricia Taylor (Tyler, TX), Celeste Villarreal (Rowlett, TX), Rachel Williams (Elkmont, AL)

Plus these year-round employees: Dave Burtness, Brenda DeWalt, Brock DeWalt, Ashley Davis, Bev Jackson, Jonathan Shea, Deb Wade, Jessica Woolmington

And these individuals from the ranch or community: Dawn Chambers, Halley DeWalt, Levi DeWalt, Blane Jackson, Parker Johnson, Ben Little, Bob Marken.

The summer staff you will meet this summer are truly the “cream of the crop” as they are selected from around 80 applications we received this year. Our staff members are not only “cream of the crop” but also very talented. Singing, playing musical instruments, acting, art, photography and more. You will enjoy and observe their talents at various events during the week.

A few changes to note

What’s Different:

  • Cookout deck meal on Sunday evening with entertainment by Randy & Carole Barnes
  • Country Dancing, including square dancing, line dancing, and a bit of swing dancing is on Sunday evening.
  • Monday evening is a family game night
  • Mexican Buffet is a Tuesday dinner meal.
  • Tuesday evening is a family campfire with ultimate s’mores.
  • Praise & Worship is on Wednesday evening.
  • Thursday afternoon rafters need to plan on providing their own transportation to Noah’s Ark.
  • Golf is not complimentary; however, we are happy to provide guests with phone numbers and directions to two area golf courses
  • Several exciting “Expedition” options, including an overnight backpacking trip.
  • New lodge doors going out to the deck
  • Baby grand piano in Centennial Hall
  • Pre-Breakfast Sunrise Ride
  • The Saloon will offer expanded espresso coffee and specialty coffee selections.

What’s the Same?

  • Saturday night buffet
  • Saturday night general orientation
  • Sunday morning church service
  • Monday WB
  • Wednesday Cookout Lunch
  • Thursday WB
  • Thursday evening Western Party
  • Amazing teen program
  • Super fun children’s program
  • Saloon with coffee, smoothies, and Wi-Fi
  • Cogan’s Ranch Ride
  • Friday steak dinner
  • Bob Marken


While more and more people are getting a cell phone signal on the ranch, there is no guarantee you will get a signal. However, if you drive as little as one mile east, you will pick up a signal. We do have a limited number of phone lines here on the ranch. We also have a phone line for guests to call out on and to send faxes. We have a computer in our guest communications area in the Saloon as well as wireless network, though not super fast.

High Altitude Health Tips

To avoid altitude sickness:

  • Drink plenty of fluids
  • Do not overdo on the first day or two
  • Avoid alcohol and sleeping pills
  • Eat high carbohydrate, low fat foods
  • Reduce caffeine intake

To prevent cold injury:

  • Dress in layers
  • Bring extra clothes for sudden temperature changes
  • Wear properly fitting boots and gloves

To prevent sunburn:

  • Use SPF 30-45 sunscreen Always wear sunglasses

Deer Valley is located at 8400’ elevation. Consult your local physician if you have any specific health concerns.


Is your family celebrating a birthday or anniversary during your week with us? Our wait staff will help make it special by delivering dessert to the special person or couple, complete with a candle and singing, on the day and meal of your choice. Let our dining room hostess know in advance which lunch or dinner you would like this special treatment, along with the name of the person(s), and we’ll take it from there! If you desire a large cake to serve more people, we recommend City Market’s bakery in nearby Buena Vista.


Your GPS might take you the “long way” to get here.

16825 CR 162 Nathrop, CO 81236 | Phone: 719.395.2353

Toll Free: 877.897.1297 | e-mail: fun@deervalleyranch.com

Created By
Jonathan Shea

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.