Hawley Mountain Guest Ranch Blog
Busy Fall Tasks for the Hawley Mountain Staff
The end of the summer season is drawing to a close the end of September. However, there remains many things to get accomplished during the next few weeks. Staff members have already dug into some of the tasks for fall work.
Wrangler Allison shows her strength by chopping firewood. Getting an adequate supply for the colder months ahead takes a lot of hard work.
At Hawley Mountain most of our lumber used for building and repairs is taken from trees on our property. Maintenance man, Ryan, and Operations Manager, Erik, work at cutting down trees to be used for an addition on our laundry room. Not a task for the faint of heart!
Ryan is sawing the tree trunks into various sizes of lumber for the addition. It's a slow and tedious job, but accuracy is important in order to build without errors.
We have outgrown our present day laundry room, so this work project will be a welcomed addition to make things much easier for the housekeeping staff in the 2019 sseason.
Meet Alpha and Bravo!
A new addition at Hawley Mountain this summer are two goats on loan from our head wrangler, Allison. One of the goats' purposes at the ranch is to eat some of the invasive plants around the buildings. They do a fine job with this task, but that's not their only purpose.
These goats respond well to Allison, or should we say, most of the time. They have been known to get off of their leases, and then the roundup begins.
Sometimes they show up at inappropriate times, such at meal time at the cookouts. We think they are just looking for a little attention from guests.
Allison demonstates that Alpha and Bravo really do have a practical and useful function as well. She uses them as pack animals when she takes hikes into the mountains. Allsion states that each goat can carry up to 20 pounds. That certainly helps with carrying some of the load on the trails.
Perhaps one of the goats' most important functions is to provide good times of enjoyment for guests of all ages. This young man is certainly getting to know more about goats in a very fun way! His expression says it all.....
Hiking to the Top....
Hiking with friends to the top of a mountain can be challenging, but going in a group makes a great support system.
The views along the way aren't hard to look at either.
Once at the top of Monument Peak be sure to sign your name to validate your effort!
Sharing the experience with friends makes the hiking trek all worthwhile.
"Horse Bonding" at Hawley Mountain Ranch
Horses are always a popular item at Hawley Mountain Ranch. The kids eagerly arrive early for the morning ride in time to check on their horses and give them a little lovin'.
These two young cowboys are headed off for a fun ride on their mighty steeds, Red Cloud and Mac.
One doesn't have to be a kid to fall in love with horses. Our riders of all ages bond with their horse during the week and have a hard time saying goodby after their last ride on Saturday afternoon.
Join the Hawley Mountain Team!
One of the best ways to get a group of new guests acquainted with each other and become "besties" by the end of the week is to get a lively game of volleyball started after the cookout. Rules are a bit lax as we play with "mountain" rules which pretty much means that anything goes!
There are no age limits, so the young (and older) can occupy the court. At times some of the staff nearly sacrifice their bodies trying to get a ball over the net, but no serious injuries have been reported.
It takes lots of concentration to get that ball served over the net. What a way to learn teamwork while having lots of fun!
First Horseback Ride of the Week
The guests gather on Monday morning at the barn for some safety and riding instruction given by our wranglers before heading out on their first ride of the week.
Each rider is given careful attention by the wranglers to make sure everything is just right.
Sometimes it takes a little help with a knee boost to get up into that high saddle, but the wranglers aim to help all they can!
Once everything is set to the wranglers' specifications off go the riders to enjoy some additional training in the arena and then on to enjoy a fun meadow ride.
100th Year Milestone at Hawley Mountain Guest Ranch
Who would have guessed that the purchase of the Tom Hawley homestead by the Jarrett family100 years ago would result in the present day guest ranch at Hawley Mountain? 2017 was certainly a year to remember up here at the ranch. A large group of family and friends gathered in July to help celebrate this important part of ranch history.
Over 130 guests gathered to celebrate with us, and it was a great time for conversations with old friends and share a lot of "memories.
An amazing dinner was prepared by the kitchen crew while the rest of the staff scurried with the rest of the preparations to make the event so enjoyable. Music was furnished by a talented local group from Big Timber entertaining the guests during their evening meal and afterwards.
That same evening owners Ron and Phyllis Jarrett were totally surprised to discover that their 50th wedding anniversary was being celebrated as well. What a memorable time for all of us!
Best Cook in the West!
Hawley Mountain Ranch has found a real treasure in our cook, Nancy. Returning for her 5th year
she has prepared tasty meals for a hungry group of guests and staff with amazing variety and effeciency. Ranch meals are served buffet style, and there are always plenty of choices for everyone's preferences.
Check out these two loaves of sour dough bread fresh from the oven. Don't they just make your mouth water?
Cookout Food is the Best!
The best thing about cookouts at Hawley Mountain is the big burgers and brats! Sometimes it can be a real challenge for small mouths to get around their sandwich.
But where there's a will, there's definitely a way!
Horseback Ride to High Meadow
Off to a high meadow go the Hawley Mountain horseback riders! Placer Basin trail is popular for hikers, as well as horseback riders, because of the spectacular view when looking up the Boulder River valley. After a short stop to overlook the impressive Hells Canyon, the riders continue on up the trail to reach a lush meadow often covered with alpine wildflowers.
Dirty Faces....a Sign of a Great Meal!
"Guess what I ate at the cookout?"
Bet you can't guess what I ate!
"After a wild game of volleyball I'm ready to enjoy a s'more, dirt and all!"
Hawley Mountain Wranglers Work Hard!
A “wrangler” is defined as a person who herds or cares for livestock on a range. That’s exactly what our wranglers at Hawley Mountain Ranch do….and they do their job well.
Getting to the Other Side Works Well on Horseback
Why did the horses cross to the other side? Because it's loads of fun!
Horses are wetting their whistles before heading across the pristine Boulder River.
The horses know their way, so they are able to avoid some of the larger boulders in the river. Guests enjoy the experience of actually being in the river...without getting wet! Early in the season the river level is high enough to cause wet boots or pant legs to occur if you have long legs...or a short-legged horse.
There is nothing more enjoyable than taking a river ride on a foggy autumn day. Beauty is all around you.
Sand Hill Cranes Are Sighted at Hawley Mountain Ranch
Look what was spotted by the keen eye of guest, Karen Elliott. Two elusive sand hill cranes were hiding in the sage brush below the lodge. Karen was able to photograph these unusual birds, but off they flew once they discovered that they were being watched. Beautiful animals in flight, and it's entertaining to listen to their unique call.
100th Year of Jarrett Ownership of Hawley Homestead
This year we celebrate the 100 years that Hawley Mountain has been owned by the Jarrett family. This little piece of paradise was purchased from homesteader, Tom Hawley, bythe present co-owner’s great-great grandfather, Ralph Jarrett, back in 1917. This photo shows Tom Hawley's original cabin once located near our present day barn and corrals.
The 160 acre property was used by the Jarrett’s for decades as a “stopping off” place for their bands of sheep while making the 80 mile trek from the Jarrett sheep ranch west of Big Timber into the higher elevations of wilderness to graze on government permits for the summer. The first photo below shows the bands of sheep grazing at Hawley Mountain before heading into the summer range in higher elevations. The second photo is present owner's grandfather, Tom Jarrett, heading into the mountains with supplies on pack horses.
In 1972 Bill Jarrett (another great-great grandson) and his wife Sadako visualized that this property could be a special place for others to enjoy, so he established the present day guest ranch that is still in operation today.
Many changes and improvements have occurred over these past 100 years, but the natural beauty of the surrounding mountains and pristine Boulder River continue to awe visitors as they experience the uniqueness of Hawley Mountain. Let the celebration begin!
Got a Hankerin' for a Great Cup of Cowboy Coffee?
We know just the place to enjoy this tasty brew. Cowboy coffee is prepared twice a week at the Hawley Mountain Ranch cookouts.
This "coffee making" duty is done by Ron Jarrett every week, and he prides himself on knowing just how to get the job done. First the water has to be heated until it's boiling in the blue enamel coffee pot that has seen its share of open fires. Coffee grounds are then stirred into the boiling water, they simmer for a couple of minutes, and then a cup or two of cold water is added to hopefully settle most of the grounds.
Ready for a little cowboy coffee with your dessert? Ron happily serves his special brew to whoever is willing to give it a try.
This hot coffee is a great way to finish off a steak.....or sip with a brownie or some other yummy dessert that is served at the cookout. It especially "hits the spot" on those chilly September evenings when it's a little harder to stay warm. A few coffee grounds left in the bottom of the cup is a sign that this beverage was a truly a cup of "cowboy coffee"!
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