Colorado Mountain Ranch Summer Camp

Smiles at the Peak!
Beautiful Riding Country!

Live and work in the mountains this summer!

Colorado Mountain Ranch is Boulder's Original Summer Day Camp for children and teenagers. Our staff develops into a close-knit residential community of people who enjoy staying active outdoors in the mountains and working with children. The Ranch is a special place where people connect for outdoor active fun.

Colorado Mountain Ranch is on a ridge of wildflower meadows and forests at 8500' elevation, above Boulder, featuring views of the snow-capped peaks of the Continental divide. The Walker Family established the property bordering the historic gold-mining town of Gold Hill as a children's summer camp in 1947.

About Colorado Mountain Ranch Summer Camp

On weekdays, we serve a general population, ages 7 to 17 in our Day Camp programs, with a one-night-a-week children's overnight in camp and out trip overnight campouts, too. Evenings and weekends, we meet, plan, share, and attend to groups for retreats, weddings, company family picnics, and team-building Challenge ropes course experiences.

Since 1947, Colorado Mountain Ranch campers have sung “You’re the Best in All the World!” to celebrate Camp Spirit and the winning Place, People, and Programs! Work with a congenial team outdoors with children. About 45 residential staff members serve up to 175 campers each week. The Colorado Mountain Ranch is independent and family-owned and operated by the same Camping Family since its founding. 

In September of 2010, a forest fire swept through part of the Ranch, burning a number of acres of forest and buildings.  Our new horse barn, built in the spring of 2011, graces our extended meadow.  Rebuilding continues with a new gymnastics pavilion and improvements to our historic Lodge, the heart of Camp.  Programs evolve including mountainboarding, the fire ecology program, children's yoga, and Eat Real! programs to enrich our experiences in Earth and Sustainability.

The Colorado Mountain Ranch is a place to make connections - with peers, children, the outdoors, the mountains, nature, your true self...  The staff team comes together to share common interests in children, staying active in the outdoors, making a positive impact on the world.  Each summer a unique community builds, bonding friends for a lifetime!

The Employee Experience

So many Colorado Mountain Ranch campers and staff members reflect on their summers at the Ranch as the best summers of their lives.  A close-knit community grows.  Friendships often last forever!

The residential staff community lives and works together, giving each member of the team the chance to build connections with each other and the natural surroundings. Staff being in residence on-site for children's day camp programs allows for staff members to identify with the beauty and magic of the place that is the Ranch.  As the core of the experience develops, staff members reach out to include the campers in the growing feeling of a cooperative upbeat community.  Living in Camp gives the staff time to meet, share, and plan to enrich the program and give individual support for each child and group.

Each group of children has a counselor and each activity has a specialized instructor or instructional team working together to provide every child with experiences to build skills physically, mentally, emotionally.  Staff members serve as coaches to help children build confidence to strive toward taking risks and trying as hard and long as it takes toward successes. 

The Walker Family loves kids and staff members alike.  We all aim to listen to each other with respect.  Occasions abound for positive interactions and loads of fun, both on and off the job!

Ideal Candidate

Qualities we look for in our staff include a positive attitude, enthusiasm, good judgment, and reliability. Flexibility and adaptability to changing priorities are necessary. Our staff must be personable, highly energetic, safety-minded, honest, sincere and willing to work hard for rewards beyond financial gain. Staff must stay physically and mentally active and alert. We embrace a Native American philosophy of respect for self, others, nature and stewardship of the Earth. Everyone helps with daily support crews, general maintenance, construction and other work projects.

Room and Board

Enjoy good hearty home-made meals and bunkhouse style mountain cabin living!

Employee Perks

Staff members receive laundry service, leadership training, future personnel references, and the opportunity to make good friends and to create, contribute and serve in a cooperative, active, supportive, outdoor mountain community with children. Although mobile devices are banned around the children and in common areas, cell service and Wifi are at least intermittent.

Getting Here and Getting Around

On arrival and departure days, we provide transportation to and from the Denver Airport, bus and train stations. Public transportation systems in Boulder and Denver are good. Some staff members bring their own vehicles and are usually generous with ride shares.

For Fun

Our area is honeycombed with trails to explore and patchworked with National Forest lands right nearby.  A camping area with an amazing 360-degree vista of the high peaks and deep valleys is just a mile up from the main Ranch. The historic mining town of Gold Hill once housed 10,000 people during the Colorado Gold Rush. Today 150 rugged folk compose a small mountain community proud of their original general store, cafe, restaurant, and music venue. 

From our mountain location to the west it's just a one-half hour drive to the trailheads which lead up and over the alpine country of the Continental Divide, Roosevelt National Forest, the Indian Peaks Wilderness Area, and Rocky Mountain National Park. To the east, it's just a one-half hour drive into the beautiful college town of Boulder. Tubing on Boulder Creek has become a staff favorite. From there, the drive is only another half-hour to the excitement and cultural offerings of the big city of Denver.

Generally each summer, a staff committee organizes staff outings for river rafting, a Rockies baseball game, and a show at Boulder's Dinner Theatre.

Our Jobs

All new applicants must be available to commit from May 29 - August 12, 2018.  The arrival date of May 29 is NON-NEGOTIABLE for new staff members.

All those hired to work with the horses must arrive May 27 to begin Wrangler Orientation. 

Overall Staff Orientation Week is May 29-June 3 followed by ten weeks of children's programs, June 4 - August 12.

  • Must be at least 18 years of age, AND have at least one year of post-high school education and/or work experience.
  • You must be a U.S. citizen or be legally eligible to work in the US.

Activity Instructors


Instruct: Western Horseback Riding (Wrangler), Animal Care, Roping, Western Art (drawing horses) Mountainboarding (like snowboarding on wheels), general Arts&Crafts, Archery, Swimming (Lifeguards), Lake Kayaking, Low Ropes Teambuilding, Gymnastics, Trampoline, Frolf, Drama, Yoga, Leather work, Nature, Outdoor Living, Foraging, Camping, Indian Lore, Sustainability, Gardening, Teen Leadership

Children's Group Counselors

Lead and guide groups of children ages 7-17 and assist with activity programs. (Counselors may also teach some activities.)


Transport clientele in vans and busses. (Driving combines with other main jobs.)

Kitchen Manager and Head Chef


Plan and serve regular well-balanced homemade meals to staff three meals and snacks every day, to children three meals a week and snacks daily, and adult meals for groups. Also: plan personalized menus, order supplies, manage other kitchen and dining room staff and cleanup.  Salary negotiable.



General upkeep of all systems -- mechanical, electrical, automotive, plumbing and repair. Loading, hauling, landscaping, set-up and cleanup.



Care for our family’s active two-year-old toddler and her lively seven-year-old sister.



Public and staff relations and communications, front desk, accounting, registration, telephone, computer, data, filing, health care of campers and staff, and some conflict resolution and one-on-one with children.  Fun and fast-paced.

Prep Cook/Baker


Assist the Kitchen Manager/Head Chef. Help with personalized menu planning, home-cooking, baking, food prep, buffet management, serving, dish and pan washing, overall cleanup and maintenance of the dining room, kitchen and food storage areas.



Teach Western riding, natural relationship with horses, bridling, saddling, horse and animal care, breeds and colors; lead instructional and trail rides and games on horses; feed and care for all animals and keep corrals, barn and tack clean and serviceable.  Help with roping and Western Art (drawing horses).

How to Apply

Please look over our website before you apply to get a feel for us and to help you decide if you think you would be a good fit for our team. Submit an application via the Apply Now link below.

Check us out on Facebook here!

Contact Info