My husband and I own a ranch with approximately 200 (ish) cows/calves/bulls, and 70-80 horses. We live in the Wood River Valley in south central Idaho, and have a view of the Sawtooth Mountain Range from our living room window. We own 3 separate properties, totaling approximately 250 acres, and we have various aspects of our ranching operation on each of them. In the spring, from our back porch we can watch the new baby colts buck and play. We have approximately 23 mares who foal in the pasture right outside our back door. It's always fun to watch them run and play all summer long!
We live approximately 45 minutes from one of Idaho's more popular ski resorts, Sun Valley. There is also a city approximately 1 hour from our home. Some of the sights include Sun Valley, Craters of the Moon National Park, Shoshone Falls, and various other parks and sights within a few hours' drive from our home.
We have a large yard, with flower beds, and raised vegetable garden boxes. We have a small pond that sits in the corner of the yard, and a dog, Rudy, who loves to go on cattle drives, or just laze around the yard when there's nothing for him to do. The horses live in various locations around the properties, and love to be 'visited', when they're not being ridden.
We have 5 adult children, all living away from home. 2 of them live in Carey near our home.
As a speech-language pathologist, I am interested in learning new languages and cultures, and would be willing to help our guest learn English. I am also a fluent signer (ASL), and would love to be able to have the opportunity to practice my sign language.
Cooking / shopping
Help in the house
Travelers will have the opportunity to learn what country living in South Central Idaho is like, and learn from one of the last true 'cowboys' of the American West! You will have the opportunity to practice your English, and if you want to try to teach us some of your language, we would love to learn. It's always good for a laugh, as we sit around the dinner table with our work awayers and try to teach each other words or phrases from our various languages.
We have had work awayers for two years now, and we have truly enjoyed each of them, and have made them our extended family!
There are always many projects on the go, but some that we would need help with include:
- building and maintaining fence
- mowing lawn
- working cattle
- cattle drives
- irrigating hay crops
- helping with harvest of hay crops
- feeding cows and horses
- checking cattle (riding through cattle range in summer months to make sure cattle are healthy and doing well in their pasture locations)
- cutting and splitting firewood
- housework and household maintenance
Most of the duties on our ranch involve some significant physical labor. We welcome guests who are not afraid to have dirty hands, and sweat rolling down their backs. It is important to emphasize that this is a working ranch, and not a horse stable. There will be some work with the horses, but this will not be a daily thing. There are many aspects to operating a ranch, such as irrigating hay fields, cutting and hauling hay, fixing fences, and various other tasks that are typical of a ranch. If your primary interests are working with horses exclusively, this is likely not the placement for you. If your primary interests are to see the first-hand operations of a working ranch, then we would love to have you as our guests! In exchange, we offer the opportunity to learn what country living is all about, and the ranching lifestyle.
Our home is a 2 level, 6 bedroom home with 3 bathrooms, a media room, a living room, and a back deck overlooking a horse pasture that is always full of horses. We have 2 spare bedrooms, and our guests would have access to wifi, their own (or shared....depending on how many work awayers we have) bathroom, and a fantastic view of the Sawtooth Mountain Range! Our kitchen is large, and our fridge is always full! We love it when our work awayers cook for us, as my cooking skills are sketchy, at best, and my husband.....well.....sometimes he'll cook breakfast. :) Most of the time we offer an "every man for himself" opportunity (help yourself to the kitchen and its contents), or when we have many work awayers, we will rotate cooking responsibilities for the group.
If we had a guest in the winter months, volunteers would be able to ski or snowboard in the mountains (Sun Valley Ski Resort) near our home. There are opportunities for downhill skiing, cross-country skiing, or snowshoeing.
There is a city (Twin Falls) 68 miles from our home. The town we live in is small, with 2 gas stations, a post office, and a couple churches. My husband and I would be willing to provide our guests with some tourism experiences on weekends, but our work weeks are generally pretty busy.
During the summer months, there are hiking, and cycling trails around Sun Valley. There are opportunities for horseback riding, cattle drives, etc.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
More than two
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week