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A Day In The Life Of A CLU Wrangler

June 22, 2021

C Lazy U is more than a luxury vacation destination in the Rocky Mountains. It’s a real, working dude ranch with miniature donkeys, cows, and a herd of 200 horses. Rooted in the authentic American West, C Lazy U offers the perfect blend of excitement, adventure, and relaxation. Our team of talented wranglers is essential to keeping our animals and guests safe during horseback rides and other activities. To give you the inside scoop on what it’s like to be a C Lazy U Wrangler, we interviewed Tami Burkett, the Equine Health and Veterinary Care Manager.  

Tami Burkett

What Does A Wrangler Do During A Typical Morning? 

Our day starts with preparing the jingle horses, riding out to pasture, and jingling the herd to the main part of the ranch. Some wranglers ride the jingle horses and make sure the herd stays together, and other wranglers watch the horses come in and look out for any injuries or lameness.  

If we spot an injured horse, my team will pull them from the herd to give them a check-up. Sometimes their injury is as simple as a rock getting stuck in their shoe, and other times it may be a small cut or bite. Depending on their injury, we’ll decide whether to rest the horse, give them antibiotics, or if we need to call in the vet.  

Once all the horses are accounted for, we’ll prepare them for the morning ride by brushing them, saddling them up, and giving them grain. Depending on their age and weight, some horses get regular grain and some get senior grain, which is easier to digest. Then, we’ll start pairing guests with their horses and get ready for the morning ride.  

What Do Wranglers Do During Guest Rides? 

We try to keep rides around 6-7 guests per wrangler. By keeping groups small, wranglers can look out for the safety of the guests and the horses. On advanced and intermediate rides, we’ll offer some coaching to improve our guests’ skills and acclimate them to trotting or loping. When we’re not offering advice, we’re talking to guests about our land, swapping stories, and making the ride as fun as possible for the whole group.  

group riding in background

What Do Wranglers Do In The Afternoon and Evening? 

After the morning riders return, wranglers check on the horses, make sure they get food and water, and prepare for the afternoon ride. Once all rides are finished for the day, we take the saddles off of all the horses and jingle them out to pasture for the night. Once we return to the ranch, we’ll sweep, clean up the barn and paddocks, and make sure everything is clean and ready for the next morning.

What’s The Best Part Of Being On The C Lazy U Team? 

I love the staff! I’ve made a lot of good connections and our team really feels like a family.  Of course, the horses are amazing. I originally took the position 12 years ago because it blended my interests in veterinary care and riding, and I’ve been here ever since. Not many places offer the opportunity to work with 150-200 horses on any given day, and it’s so cool to work with a big herd like this! 

Do You Have A Favorite Horse?

You really get to know the horses and each one is so different.  I love seeing all the personalities our horses have. If I had to pick, Alice would be one of my favorite animals to work with.  I’d worked with foals a lot before coming to the ranch, and since Alice was born on the ranch, it’s been really fun to watch her grow up over the past 5 years.  

Tami’s energy is contagious, and with a passionate group of wranglers and staff, it’s no wonder our guests come to love our horses just as much as our team. We’d love to see you on the ranch sometime soon

Interested in joining the C Lazy U team? Check out our open positions!   

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From the Horse's Mouth

Everyone was friendly and helpful. Heather– She made sure we were happy and was always friendly and helpful Travis– he was so friendly and accommodating. Amelia and Bel– They went out of their way to make sure we were ok in a really friendly and fun way. 2 Ranch hands ( can't recall their names)– They took us hatchet throwing and were so encouraging and fun even though I was awful at it. All the bar staff and waiters and really everyone there was fantastic. What an experience! Can't wait to come back!

~ Lynn S., 09-21-2021

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