Every year the prices here go up and up, while the experience goes down. I was a frequent traveller to this ranch and have brought friends, family, coworkers over the years. I was trying to organize another trip for this year and noticed on the website that the prices this year have gone up again, while the mid week and low season rates are eliminated. Every day is high season here I guess. They've gotten a bit "high on their horse" so to speak. Why would you have to pay the same on a busy summer weekend as you would midweek in April? It makes no sense. I was planning a trip with up to 20 coworkers for mid week in May but they all said it cost way too much - over $500 per person for two days. We're going somewhere else.
I have also noitced over the years the little details that made it special have become less and less. The first time I went we were brought out plates of hot appies, home made guacamole and salsa complimentary after our afternoon ride. The last time I went we got chips out of a bag with salsa from a jar. They chef is not as good as the one they once had and the meals are much more set with less ability to serve likes/dislikes anymore, just "allleriges". The kids are also just given whatever they are serving. The first time I took my son, the chef had a meeting at breakfast with all the kids and they "VOTED" on the days menu.
I stil enjoy the horseback riding but find it often takes way too long to saddle up and get going. There also seems to be less interest in the guides taking the group where they want to go and just following the same route over and over. Last time on a lovely summer day we begged to go to the river but each time we asked was some excuse. The worst experience ever was after we'd given our weights when we checked in, one office woman came up to my sister in law while we were with a group of people sitting outside and basically said they didn't believe the weight she said she was and asked he to follow her to the barn to be weighed!! Seriously. How embarrassing. They then said she was too heavy to ride (185 pounds) even though she had said she was 185) and said she couldnt ride. They then relented and said she could walk only, no trotting or gallopping.
At $255 per day per person, considering the EXTREMELY basic rooms, good(but certainly not gourmet as they advertise) food it's just too much. My family of two adults and two teens would have to pay almost $900 for ONE day - that's just Stupid - the family trip here is off as well - we're going skiing at Whistler for a whole weekend with lift tickets for cheaper.
The only people this place will really cater to now is European tourist with too much money. It's sad.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- This is it - this is your ranch, only four hours from Vancouver, Canada! Whether you're looking for a horseback riding holiday with a bit of adventure, a family vacation at a dude ranch where even the kids will have fun, or just some place new where you can really get away from it all, you've found it. Sundance Guest Ranch is located in the warmest, sunniest spot in Canada with sweeping, panoramic views of the wide open Thompson River Valley that are so beautiful, they're ridiculous... but that's not it. Sundance Guest Ranch is just an easy four hour drive from Vancouver, Canada, making us a perfect weekend getaway destination... but that's not it. Sundance Guest Ranch serves absolutely amazing food that goes well beyond what you might expect from a "dude ranch"... but that's not it either. Sundance Guest Ranch runs a herd of over 100 happy, well-cared-for horses with thousands of acres of spectacular and varied terrain to explore, and the horseback riding is truly wonderful, whether you're looking for relaxing, instructive or exciting... but even that's not it. When you've just gotten back from a ride, and you're sitting on the lounge deck with your favourite drink in your hand, watching the herd gallop out to the field for the night and laughing with someone you've known ten minutes like you've known them ten years... lean back, put a foot up on the railing and look around... you're close, close to knowing why we say: "The first time, it's a vacation - after that, it's coming home." ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Sundance Guest Ranch Hotel Ashcroft