Vagabond Ranch is an ideal place to stay for your back country adventure whether by foot, bike, snowmobile, or ski. Nestled between the Never Summer and Rabbit Ears mountain ranges at 9200 feet we are surrounded by streams, meadows, and peaks. The setting is similar to a tenth mountain division hut, with easier access and optional amenities. Two houses and two cabins can sleep up to 33 people and with two yoga/meditation rooms and a rustic bunkhouse Vagabond Ranch can be a site for your Colorado back country wedding, reunion, or retreat.
Our goal is happy people. Whether you seek happiness in a backcountry hut experience, by lessening your impact on the planet, or by understanding the mind of contentment, we seek to support your journey the best we can.
The Vagabond Ranch site has a history of connecting with and caring for nature in a joyful way. The Vagabond Ranch has been site to many different activities over the years. The Ute people were native inhabitants of the area. The Trapper’s cabin dates back to 1865. Sometime after this the land was homesteaded and a boundary was created. The Homestead cabin on the south side of Willow creek is a remnant of this period. When it is open for guests you can stay there and imagine what life was like for the homesteaders. The Bunkhouse, constructed in various stages by campers from Vagabond Camp, reportedly began as a stagecoach stop between North Park in Wyoming and Middle Park in Colorado. Some of the original building with its ax hewn logs can still be seen. We believe that the Wranglers cabin dates back to the same era. The site has been used for ranching and to house Gilsonite miners over the years. In the 30’s and 40’s it was a hunting retreat to a wealthy industrialist who made it available to Denver youth at risk. His dying wish was that it continue to be made available to Denver youth. He was buried on the property and his estate eventually sold it in accordance with his wishes to the Pavek’s, who coined the name while using it as a base for Vagabond camp that took youth on tours around the West. After the camp had closed the Kelley’s bought the property and poured resources into preserving and winterizing the buildings and creating a private family retreat. The first solar panels were installed in 1991. We are beginning the next phase in the history of the Vagabond Ranch, which will be unique and carry on some of the traditions begun over the years. Read the Blog entry Memories of Vagabond Ranch Camp by Thomas Leeming, a former camper.