Colorado Trails Ranch

Horses View in the River
Wagon Driving
Barns at entrance to the ranch
Lodge Dining
Staff Housing
Fly-Fishing
Assay Office and Trading Post
Heated Swimming Pool
Corral Capers
Horses coming into the barns
Dining room
Hike to the top of Baxter's Knob

Beautiful mountain scenery, rewarding work, adventure, new friends and happy trails await you!

Colorado Trails has been a dude ranch since 1960. Starting in 2021 we will be offering traditional dude ranch all-inclusive weeks as well as a la carte options enabling us to serve a wider range of guests and events. We offer the best employee perks in the business and all sorts of opportunity to explore the Four Corners.

Located just outside of the historic mining town of Durango, Colorado. The ranch borders thousands of acres of the San Juan National Forest. It is about a 20 minute drive to downtown shopping and nightlife.

About Colorado Trails Ranch

Beautiful mountain scenery, hard work, and fun are just a few of the elements that our guest ranch crew experience every summer. If you have a ready smile, are willing to work hard, love the outdoors and enjoy working with people, we may have a job for you.

As an employee of our ranch, you will become an extension of our family. We strive for excellence and the best service in the industry. We look for these same qualities in our staff. If you are willing to make this commitment, we invite you to submit your application.

The Employee Experience

Colorado Trails Ranch is in a beautiful location in the San Juan Mountains. No traffic noises, traffic jams or crowded streets. We are nestled in our own little valley with over 1000 private acres and adjacent to thousands more in the San Juan National Forest. However, we are not isolated as we are just 12 miles from the town of Durango which has a vibrant downtown full of local shops, restaurants and nightlife as well as modern conveniences like a Super Walmart. From downtown you may also enjoy tourist activities like zip lining, four-wheeling and the Durango and Silverton train. We have lots of hiking nearby, world class mountain biking as well as Mesa Verde National Park. We are just about a 3 hour drive from Moab, Utah and 9 hours from the Grand Canyon, Arizona. Our staff organize many little excursions on their time off to see what the Four Corners area has to offer.

We have modern, comfortable, and spacious facilities for our staff housing and our food is wonderful! During peak season you will eat with our guests and enjoy the same food they do. You will also be welcome and encouraged to join in our guest activities on your time off.

The very best part of being at Colorado Trails for the summer is the people you will meet. From your coworkers to the guests we have each week; you will have the opportunity to form life-long friendships. Great people, beautiful location, fun adventures, and an opportunity to save money….how can you beat that?

Ideal Candidate

Team players who love to meet new people with a ready smile and not afraid of hard work are encouraged to apply!

Room and Board

Colorado Trails Ranch provides shared housing at NO COST. We have limited housing for those requiring private quarters. New staff housing buildings were built in 2014 and 2015 with living rooms, Wi-Fi, and laundry rooms in each building.

All of your meals are also provided at no cost during May, June, and July. Beginning in August, the ranch moves to an a la carte system and staff will be offered one shift meal as well as 50% off our grill. Staff members may eat and are encouraged to eat alongside our guests. You will primarily enjoy the same food as the guests.

FREE ROOM and BOARD beats most employment offers you will find! You will be able to save money while working at Colorado Trails.

Employee Perks

Ranch employees are paid an hourly wage plus time and a half for all hours worked over 40 in a week. Pay period is every two weeks. This also beats most offers of a flat weekly or monthly compensation.

On top of your already good hourly wage, room and board, staff receives an end of season bonus of $1.00 an hour for each regular hour worked and $1.50 for each over time hour as long as the dates outlined in their employment agreement are completed satisfactorily.

One of the privileges we offer our staff is the use of the Staff Lounge. This is available to all staff, and guests are not permitted in the Lounge. There is a TV monitor (although no television reception) with DVD player available along with a land line telephone. Wi-Fi is good enough to stream your favorite shows on our TV or your laptop. Wi-Fi is also available in staff housing.

Getting Here and Getting Around

For those staff members who have vehicles, there is a designated staff parking lot and we will provide specific information upon your arrival.

If you are not driving to the ranch we will be happy to pick you up from the Durango, Colorado bus station or airport.

For Fun

Staff members are welcome to participate in activities including horseback riding, rafting, shooting sports, lake power tubing trip, and fishing with our guests during your time off. Participation in these activities is on a space-available basis and must be scheduled at least a day in advance. Staff members interested in riding must complete our riding orientation, follow the guidelines of our riding program and help in the barn with grooming, saddling and mucking stalls. The Four Corners area and downtown Durango offer plenty of recreational opportunities off of the ranch as well, to explore on your own or with your new friends.

How to Apply

Please read through the employment information on our website. From there you can apply online.

Please send in all the required information and a COMPLETE application. We do request that you provide email addresses for your references, if at all possible along with phone numbers. We are finding that folks may prefer to respond to a reference request at their leisure rather than us calling at an inopportune time.

Also, If you're applying for our counselor or wrangler positions, please submit a short riding video demonstrating your riding skills. We ask the video to show you:
  ~ catching a horse, grooming, saddling and bridling it
  ~ then mounting and riding a short distance at a walk, jog and a lope
  ~ lastly, dismounting and untacking the horse.


Contact Colorado Trails Ranch