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Horseback Riding Ranch Vacations

C Lazy U is the premier, all-inclusive dude ranch located in the breathtaking Colorado mountains near Granby. Our 8,500 acres of real, untouched American West make us the ideal spot for any horseback riding retreat – for family fun, a romantic escape, or a corporate getaway.

Nothing parallels the experience of all-inclusive horseback riding vacation in the Rocky Mountains.

All-Inclusive Horseback Riding Dude Ranch

Working cows at the C Lazy U Ranch

After you’ve settled into your cozy luxury cabins, you’ll get to meet our horses. Our team of world-class wranglers pairs each guest with a horse that reflects both their riding ability and personality, allowing you to enjoy a horseback riding vacation that’s as tame or as wild as your heart desires.

Each of our 200 horses is different — from gentle giants to bold mares. We highly value the health and well-being of our horses (please see our weight restrictions below) and teach you proper riding and horsemanship skills.

A Family Horseback Riding Vacation You’ll Never Forget

At the C Lazy U resort, horseback riding is a daily activity, except on check-in day and Sundays (unless otherwise noted). During your horseback riding retreat, you and your family can set out on morning and afternoon trail rides, allowing you to enjoy the beautiful scenery surrounding the ranch.

Those unable to ride on horseback can explore the ranch in an expedition vehicle on our guided Ranger Tours!

Adult Horseback Riding Program

A woman cantering on a horse at C Lazy U Ranch

To ensure everyone enjoys their horseback riding retreat, we have separate riding programs for adults and kids. But don’t worry — the whole posse will have the opportunity to ride together on family horseback riding excursions.

Our horseback riding vacations for adults allow them the chance to experience a taste of the cowboy (or cowgirl) spirit by signing up for the Working Cattle Ranch Experience, Instructional Trail Rides, Refresher Trail Rides, Riding Clinics and other activities (availability dependent on time of year).

Learn More about the Adult Riding Program

Kid’s Horseback Riding Program

Kids out on a trail ride in the mountains during their vacation at C Lazy U in Colorado

The Kid’s Riding Program is broken into four age groups, allowing children to enjoy riding with their peers. Kids learn basic riding skills and spend time honing their abilities in the arena and on the trail. The littlest cowpokes get to ride Katie the pony or be pulled in a cart by one of our miniature donkeys, while teens are given more (supervised) freedom to ride and explore. Our aim is to ensure that all ages feel comfortable as a horseback rider. No matter the age, ranch horseback riding for kids makes for an unforgettable and transformative experience.

Learn More about the Kids Horse Riding Program
The grand entry at the weekly Shodeo
The DOs and DON'Ts of horseback riding at C Lazy U Ranch

We Offer Horse Activities For Every Skill Level

In addition to four different types of trail rides, C Lazy U Ranch offers a series of riding clinics that start at the beginner level and progressively guide the participants toward higher levels of riding as the week goes on.

Once a week the ranch offers a Working Cattle Ranch Experience which will have you in the saddle for most of the day except when the group stops for a picnic lunch! Additionally, during select weeks and only by request, guests may also have the opportunity to participate in a Trail Obstacle Clinic.

Non-riders can enjoy riding in the wagon during the Team Driving demonstration, and should also ask about Grooming Clinics which riders and non-riders alike really enjoy (so do the horses)!

Compete At Our Shodeo

And what would all that riding experience mean if there wasn’t a chance to show off your skills? After the end of a week of horseback riding, on Saturday afternoon, the outdoor arena turns into a stage for guests to showcase their horsemanship abilities during the all-ages “Shodeo.”

  • The kids are the stars of the show and are judged based on time to complete course
  • Adults also compete against one another and are judged based on time and horsemanship skills during barrels, poles, Texas T (an adult Shodeo course consisting of poles and barrels).

Everyone leaves with a C Lazy U ribbon, hard-earned pride, and a satisfied appetite for adventure.

Sundays are the Horses’ Day Off

Please note the ranch does not offer horseback riding on Sunday unless it is a holiday weekend:

  • Martin Luther King Weekend
  • Presidents’ Day Weekend
  • Memorial Day Weekend
  • Labor Day Weekend
  • Thanksgiving
  • Christmas
  • New Year’s where the minimum stay requires stays beyond Sunday.

Some Special Events also extend into the following week, at which point the ranch may offer rides on Sundays. Please contact us if you have questions about a specific event you are booked for.   

Seasonal Horseback Riding Vacations

Each season at C Lazy U Ranch offers access to beautiful views only found in Granby, Colorado. Summer is our most popular season, but we ride year-round whenever the weather permits.but snowfall in the winter provides a picturesque wonderland of festive, Colorado mountain fun. Spring sees the mountain-sides covered in incredible greenery due to snow-melt and rain, with birdsongs filling the air, and in the fall, horseback rides offer spectacular views of brilliant yellows and oranges on aspen-lined trails.

Summer Horseback Riding

Adults enjoying a nice canter ride

With the warm sun, wildflowers, and Colorado wildlife on the trail, summertime is one of the most popular times to go on a horseback riding family vacation. At our all-inclusive dude ranch, horseback riding is in full swing in the summer, with daily trail rides, cattle clinics, and horsemanship classes to fill your day.

Learn More about C Lazy U’s Summer Activities

Winter Horseback Riding

A dude ranch guest rides his horse through the snow.

If you’re staying with us in the colder months – which includes Spring Break in March – winter horseback riding is available at the C Lazy U guest ranch! Our 12,000-square-foot heated indoor arena allows families to enjoy year-round riding and clinics, but we also head out onto the magical, snow-coated trails daily. At the C Lazy U dude ranch, we make sure all horseback riders are comfortable and having a blast no matter the season.

Learn More about Winter Horseback Riding Vacations

Meet the Equestrian Director

Ami Cullen, Director of Equestrian Operations at C Lazy U Ranch

Ami Cullen left her cushy job as a lawyer in Washington, D.C. to follow her heart to C Lazy U Ranch, where she fell in love with the Colorado mountains, the horses, and life on the ranch. As an accomplished equestrian in the Hunter-Jumper show ring, Ami brings a wealth of horsemanship skills to her post as Director of Equestrian Operations. You can usually find her training young horses to become great mounts for our guests, and giving riding lessons and horsemanship clinics in the arenas.

Read Ami’s story to learn more about why she quit law to become a cowgirl.

Horseback Riding Weight Restrictions

At C Lazy U Ranch, safety is one of our most important responsibilities. This obligation includes horseback riding operations and requires us to ensure the safety of both rider and horse. As such, C Lazy U exercises caution with regard to allowing horseback riding for individuals of heavier weights. The weight limit for horseback riding at C Lazy U Ranch is restricted to 250 pounds. The ranch considers several factors in determining whether or not an individual is too heavy or too big to ride, including:

  • rider’s physical fitness
  • riding experience and ability
  • size of the horse
  • type of terrain
  • speed of ride
  • and other factors

As a general rule, horses can safely carry loads of up to 20% of their body weight, including rider, saddle, and tack. C Lazy U ranch exercises discretion when addressing these issues and reserves the right to prohibit riding or restrict riding to level terrain, or walk-only rides. Please do not hesitate to contact our Barn Manager to discreetly discuss specific circumstances. We are here to make sure your Horse Riding Retreat is safe and an unforgettable memory.

Book Your All-Inclusive Horseback Riding Vacation Now

If you’ve been looking for a Colorado resort with horseback riding, our all-inclusive vacation packages don’t disappoint. Come see why C Lazy U is one of the most-awarded, best family dude ranch vacations, and discover for yourself why Condé Nast named C Lazy U one of the top ten resort destinations in the entire world!

Contact us to find out more information on joining us for the Wild West escape of a lifetime.

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Ranch Blog

Wild animals abound here at C Lazy U Ranch. On a visit to our working dude ranch and resort, you’re likely to spot some of the Rocky Mountains’ most iconic creatures, both big and small. Right at the gateway to Rocky Mountain National Park, we share the same wealth of Colorado wildlife that makes RMNP…

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From the Horse's Mouth

What a fabulous long weekend we had. From the moment we arrive(earlier than expected) and were warmly greeted and taken to our lovely well-appointed cabin, to the moment we left 3 days later we were constantly thrilled by gracious service, professionalism, alot of fun and perhaps most importantly well trained horses, wonderful trail rides, and fantastic staff.

~ Melinda C., 09-21-2021

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