Leave behind your hectic daily routine to experience a Montana family vacation enjoying spectacular scenery, wildlife, and western ranch cowboy culture.
All meals, lodging, and activities (including fly-fishing and riding instruction) are included in our all-inclusive low rates. Enjoying a variety of ranch activities and learning new skills at Hawley Mountain Guest Ranch may be just the ticket for you.
The best way for you to explore our Montana wilderness is on the "back of a horse". These responsive animals do the work while you enjoy the unforgettable scenery. Your “horse for the week” will be matched to your riding level and provide opportunities for you to get into our unspoiled mountainous terrain. The week begins with shorter rides offered in the morning and afternoon working up to longer rides as the week progresses. Enjoy saddle bag lunches in a scenic meadow, along a rippling mountain trout stream, or on a high slope overlooking the Boulder River valley.
Feel at ease when you ride at Hawley Mountain Ranch even if you have never been on a horse. Your ”horse for the week” will be matched with your riding ability, and our qualified wranglers will put you at ease with their careful “kid-friendly” guidance. The first ride begins with some basic instruction before leaving the barn and continues at the arena before taking the first meadow ride. By the end of the week you and your horse may become best friends! Lots of bonding goes on during the week between horse and rider which sometimes makes leaving your horse at the end of your stay a very “tearful” event.
Looking for quiet fly fishing on uncrowded river frontage? The Boulder River meanders through the ranch with private access to rainbow, cutthroat, and brook trout. “Catch and Release” has been the policy on our river frontage for over 40 years which makes for excellent fishing. Trout can be caught from our stocked pond for those wanting fish at the cookouts. Flies that work for various times of the season are sold at the lodge. Often anglers will ask for a lunch and head to the river for a relaxing day of fishing but later joining the rest of the group for evening activities. Fly fishing instruction at the pond (no license is necessary) is given early in the week for beginning anglers.
Interested in giving a new skill a try? Anglers, young and older, enjoy trying fly fishing at our trout pond stocked with rainbows and cutthroats. Beginning fly fishing instruction (no license is necessary) is given early in the week for those wanting to learn some techniques for what could become a lifelong hobby. Fly rods are available at the lodge, and your first fly is on us. Fly attaching lessons are given to beginners on Monday before you venture to the pond that evening to try angling for those elusive trout. For those who just want to observe there is always an opportunity for photography, hiking down to the river, or perhaps join the kids for a little “frog catching” adventure.
Share the busy hours of fun-filled activities with others by gathering around a cozy campfire at the end of the day that was full of adventure. It’s a chance to dig in to a delicious meal of hearty ranch food cooked over an open fire along with a variety of other tasty cuisine. Volleyball (played by "mountain rules" and enjoyed by all ages) can become very competitive at times. Other activities that follow the evening meal are horseshoes or trying to rope our ranch steer, Norman. At times guests see wildlife such as deer or moose stroll by, or horses sometimes join the fun. Then sharing stories and songs, jeans branding, and, of course, roasting marshmallows for S’mores are great ways to end a fun-filled day.
Perhaps our most unique activity offered is the jeep ride up an adventurous primitive road to elevations of 10,000 feet getting you to a place where few travel. This day trip includes exploring old gold mining ruins and ghost town of Independence, a crystal-clear glacier lake, and perhaps taking a more strenuous hike up to the top of Monument Peak (elevation nearly 11,000 feet). The breathtaking view from that mountain top is unbeatable and makes a lasting memory for those who trekked to the top. For those seeking a more relaxing day, hiking around the lake or casting your line in the frigid lake water might be options. Others simply enjoy the scenery while reading a good book….or perhaps a nap!