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Saddle Up for Your Colorado Dude Ranch Vacation.

The sense of discovery and freedom that existed in the Colorado Rocky Mountains centuries ago still lives on today.

Ranch Jobs

Thank you for your interest in working at one of our all-inclusive Colorado Dude & Guest Ranches!

The dude and guest ranch members of our Association collectively hire 800 to 1,000 employees each summer. Our staff members are an important part of the guest ranch experience. Ranch staff members provide exceptional guest services and Western hospitality that make our ranches some of the best in the West.

Listed below you will find positions that are typically available at each ranch:

  • Cooking and Kitchen Staff
  • Wait Staff, Housekeeping, and Maintenance
  • Horse Care and Wrangling
  • Babysitters, Kids Counselors, Teen Counselors
  • Office and Marketing positions

These ranches offer good jobs, good pay and great places to meet new people, not to mention a wonderful place to spend the summer. Our ranches typically do most of their hiring for summer employment December-March.

So What’s Next?

  1. We encourage you to contact the ranches that interest you directly as soon as possible.  To download a brochure with contact and web information of all 27 of our ranches, please CLICK HERE.
  2. Once you have narrowed down your search, the next step would be to contact the individual ranch and request an application. (Some ranches even have an application you can download online!)
  3. Each ranch has a slightly different application process. So be sure you have all the information necessary to apply with your ranch(s) of choice.

a. What kind of interview would the ranch prefer to do? Phone? In Person?
b. What information needs to be sent back to the ranch along with the application itself?
c. What are the ranches deadlines for seasonal hiring and be sure to ask when you can expect to hear back from them on their final decisions.

We wish you the best in your search for a ranch position that is just the right fit for you!

If you have any additional questions, please email the office at

Current Ranch Position Openings:  2016

Zapata Ranch

Zapata ranch is seeking wranglers for the 2016 summer season (May - Through October)

Must have a life time of riding horses, English or Western (prior wrangler or ranch experience is not necessary).  It is the responsibility of all staff to ensure that guests have the experience of a lifetime and therefore must have exceptional people skills, be able to make good, on the spot decisions, and handle multiple tasks at one time.  We are looking for individuals that have a background in, for example, Environmental Science, Biology, Equine Science, Agricultural / Food Systems Sustainability or proven interest in a related field. We’re looking for individuals who like to work hard and have fun. In your role you are required to teach ranch guests about horsemanship, nature, wildlife, conservation and responsible ranching practices of which we will teach you. Please submit a complete resume outlining all work and personal experiences, an essay describing what is important to you in living your life and why you want to work for Ranchlands to


Tumbling River Ranch

Summer needs:

Head Wrangler: full-time/year around position. candidate must have extensive experience with horses, teaching riding skills, and great people skills. Management responsibilities include scheduling, directing and assigning tasks, and evaluating employees. You are the main liaison between the guests and the riding program. .  The candidate would also concentrate on herd health, wrangling staff, guests and all responsibilities corral related.  The responsibilities for the horses would include all aspects of feed, health, scheduling ferriers, and rotating pasture, assigning riders to horses, all that goes with keeping our herd healthy and happy.  Secondly, this person will train the new summer staff, daily managing of the staff and running a smooth corral operation.  On the guest side, the head wrangler will be speaking with guests daily, handling any guest riding issues, riding & teaching guests daily.   Job would also include organizing corral projects and spend any excess time working with green & troubled horses.  The job requires a highly organized, gregarious, and energetic individual.Head maintenance: This person will be responsible for all facilities (lots of plumbing, automotive, general “fix-it” skills needed), maintenance, some grilling, driving and all grounds.  This person will have two employees to manage.  * Would love to start this position soon* Staff manager/Owners right hand: full-time position.  Candidate needs to have great people skills, phone skills, must be very organized, a self-starter and look the western part! Job duties include: checking guests in, sending office mail, answering guest questions and providing any help to them, handing all social networking and marketing for the business, setting up and keeping inventory for ranch gift shop, and helping all staff departments run more smoothly. Yoga vendor: comes in and teaches yoga 2-3 times a week, or we would be happy to have a summer employee that is also a yoga instructor, however in the past it has been a vendor that comes in just to teach the classes. Email to apply.


Elk Mountain Ranch - Now accepting applications for the 2016 season.

If you have a ready smile, are honest and willing to work long hard hours, love the outdoors and enjoy working with people, we may have a very special dude ranch employment opportunity for you! Elk Mountain Ranch is a first class guest ranch with off-the-beaten-path charm. We expect our facilities to be kept spotlessly clean, meals to be excellently presented, activities to be led with safety and professionalism, and our guest services and relations to be outstanding. Our guests are not just customers, but members of our ranch family. We want our employees to work hard, have fun, enjoy the ranch and its facilities on their time off, take a staff raft trip and build relationships to last a lifetime. Applicants for employment at our Colorado dude ranch must be at least 18 years of age and willing to live on the ranch. Modest housing and meals are supplied as part of our employment package. Please expect to have roommates. No smoking or drug use is allowed. A neat, clean appearance is necessary. We search for staff who are mature self-starters, who have strong communication skills and are team players.  We are looking for employees who are available for employment from mid-May to the end of August. Some positions extend through the end of September. Tips are prorated among the staff based on the number of days worked. Average compensation is approximately $2000 per month plus room and board.

Open Positions: Maintenance/Sports/Utility, Assistant, Cook/Swing, Housekeeper/Wait staff/Dish Washer/Food Preparation, Wrangler, Children’s Counselor, Cook

Please see our employment pages at

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