Elkhorn Ranch Arizona
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11/15/21 UPDATE:  We have one Serving position open!   If you have previously applied - please message us that you're still looking.  If you are a new applicant, please apply for a Serving position!  We would love to get a new team member in place this week to help us launch our holiday season!

Around 18 seasonal crew work plus the Miller Family work in the office, dining room, housekeeping, kitchen, landscaping, maintenance, driving and barn/guiding areas.  Our crew is small.  We aim to have well defined jobs and roles, but occasionally we must pitch in to help in other departments.  Our family works in the thick of it with our crew.  

We look for people who can bring professional skills and enthusiasm about family oriented ranch hospitality to our team.  Everyone who works here lives here ~ so work and community are intertwined.  People who enjoy the outdoors, rural life and being part of a small close knit team do best here.

When we hire crew, we fully expect everyone to make a commitment for the full season -- from ranch opening in October through early May.  We bring people on a little over one month ahead of opening day to "open" the ranch, and we view this as an important team-building time.  

We know that these are difficult times given the Covid-19 situation with many unknowns for all of us.  We have posted information on our website ~ look for the words Covid-Care in blue.  We hope you'll take a look at our plans as you do your research and prepare your application.

We greatly appreciate all the time many applicants have invested in applying to Elkhorn.  If we were unable to hire you, we wish you well in your job hunt!

We look forward to hearing from you this summer!    Thanks, The Miller Family, Nov 15, 2021

    Food and Beverage

  • Server

    Food and Beverage
    $522.00 / week

    Two servers provide dining room service for ranch guests during breakfast, lunch and supper daily and perform related kitchen and dining room cleaning and prep chores, including washing dishes.  This is a great job for someone who enjoys living and working in a rural place, meeting and talking with people of all ages, and being part of a close-knit team. 

    About Elkhorn Ranch

    Live and work for the winter at Elkhorn Ranch ~ a family owned and operated dude (guest) ranch located in the Baboquivari Mountain Range about 50 miles southwest of Tucson, Arizona.  Join a crew of 18 and the Miller family in providing gracious all-inclusive hospitality and an outdoor oriented wilderness vacation featuring guided horseback riding and hiking for 32 guests (on average).  All crew live and work on site and receive full room and board, including a private bedroom.  The owners live and work on-site and strive to have guests and crew feel like part of the family.  

    Attributes of an Ideal Candidate

    • Physical strength and stamina, ability to work quickly, ability to lift and bend and be on your feet throughout work-day
    • Skills in the areas of organization, planning and time management, attention to detail and self-motivation
    • Reliable, punctual and dedicated to completion of commitments
    • Enjoy meeting and talking with people of all ages
    • Ability to observe, care for, and take care of details to keep the indoor and outdoor communal dining room area clean, functional and aesthetically pleasing
    • Tidy and clean work habits and care for work tools and work environment
    • Friendly, professional, positive attitude and team-oriented 
    • Genuine dedication to hospitality and caring for people
    • Must not be squeamish about dirty dishes or cleaning a bathroom.


    • During pre-season opening, work with team to do floor to ceiling cleaning (including refinishing floors) of ranch buildings and common areas, which includes strenuous physical work in hot weather and significant amounts of lifting and bending.
    • Set up dining room buffet and tables, serve guests, and clean up for breakfast, lunch and supper shifts according to timing and work checklists provided by ranch 
    • Complete kitchen, dining room and outdoor furniture cleaning (including kitchen bathroom) and prep chores according to timing and work checklists provide by ranch
    • Check that all furnishings in guest dining room and outdoor patio eating area, as well as the bookshelves, piano area and game cupboards are clean, tidy and positioned correctly for each meal
    • Set lighting and fireplaces on or off for each meal according to ranch guidance regarding time of day and weather
    • Rotate between front and back serving roles according to weekly schedule provided by ranch
    • Learn guests’ first names and any special needs (provided by ranch office or informed upon arrival) and provide for the special needs throughout guests’ visits
    • Update guest list meal count list daily according to information provided by office or learned from guests
    • Keep track of supplies and add items to town list for weekly town run
    • Learn and practice food and kitchen safety guidance provided by ranch, including handwashing and glove wearing
    • Communicate questions and problems to chef and/or ranch office promptly
    • Maintain tidiness and cleanliness of work areas, storage areas and tools and supplies
    • Maintain personal tidiness and cleanliness and abide by attire requirements during work and off hours
    • Get along with immediate co-workers, and other staff with whom you share living and dining space
    • Read and respect information provided in Crew Notes 

    Typical week and day

    Guests generally arrive and depart on Sunday, for weeklong stays.  On a daily basis, the two-person serving team works during three different shifts that include each meal.  The job has a long day from beginning to end, but there is very predictable time off between shifts.  The breakfast shift begins at 6 with dining room buffet and table set up complete by 6:45, and the time for a hot breakfast before guest breakfast begins at 7:30.  During breakfast, one server works the “front” taking breakfast short orders, delivering food and clearing; and the other server works the “back” to make toast, provide support, wash dishes, and perform other back of the house daily chores. Following breakfast, each servers stays in their roles to complete a check list of front and back of the house cleaning and prep chores which should be done by 10 am.  The lunch shift lasts from 12:15 to 1:45 with both servers providing guest service and teaming up for table and buffet clearing, cleaning and dishes, such that servers should be done in time to join an afternoon ride at 2 if they choose.  The supper shift lasts from about a range of 5:15 – 6 to 8 pm (due to timing variations for nights where there are pre-dinner cocktail parties, plus the team may take turns coming in early).  It is important for servers to understand that they cannot eat lunch and supper with the crew as crew and guest meals times coincide.  The chef aims to make lunch and dinner available to crew 10-15 minutes ahead of guest meals such that a quick meal is possible, or servers hold their plates until after meal service.    

    The job is designed to take about 7 hours a day not including breaks and meals, on average.  The weekly salary is based on an average 42-hour work week.  All crew work a 6-day work week.  Crew are welcome to join guest rides, hikes and generally enjoy ranch amenities with the understanding that there can be times when workload or other situations may limit access.  


    Elkhorn has guidelines for crew attire ~ some of which are job-specific and some apply to all crew members.  

    Servers should wear comfortable jeans, pants or shorts and short or long sleeve shirt.  At supper, a button or snap shirt should be worn (no t-shirts).  Please note that stretch exercise leggings are not appropriate during work.

    All crew members must abide by the boot requirements when horseback riding (smooth sole, heel, and no laces).  In general, we ask that all crew exercise judgement with their attire when on ranch property.  Please abide by the following guidance:  

    • Please fully cover under-arms, stomach, and bottom; 
    • Avoid exposing under-garments;
    • Wear clothing in good repair; 
    • Do not wear stretch exercise leggings as your pants during work;
    • The length of bottoms should be equal to or longer than your fingertips; and
    • All kitchen and dining room crew wear clean aprons provided by ranch, closed toes shoes, and hair is contained (a cap may be worn to contain hair in the kitchen while working, but is not appropriate in the dining room).

    When attending ranch social functions, please wear work clothes or better – exercise, leisure or sleeping clothing are not appropriate for ranch social events.  


    • One year of work in hospitality, ideally including professional serving
    • Available to work complete guest ranch season, including weekends and holidays
    • Willingness to live and work at remote location and get along with co-workers during work time and off-work time


    Weekly salary of $522 derived from wages and guaranteed gratuity derived from 15% service charge added to guest bills, plus full room and board with private furnished room and shared bathroom.  Additional gratuity paid at conclusion of season to all crew present at end of season.  Direct tipping is discouraged.


    Apply Now

How to Apply

Elkhorn Ranch will accept applications during July and early August, and beyond until all positions are filled.  We ask that our returning crew confirm their plans for the upcoming season by August 1, 2021.  We will begin serious review of applications and interviews August 16th, 2021 ~ so we strongly recommend that you get your application to us by mid-August.


  • Complete the online application form available by clicking on Apply Here below. You can also contact the ranch for a paper application form if necessary.
  • We encourage you to provide a resume ~ you can attach it to your application.  You may also email your resume or any other materials to office@elkhornranch.com.
  • Provide professional references ~ and please check that contact information is up to date.  We do check references and if we can't reach people we will quickly give up on your application.
  • Photos are not required but you are welcome to send them.  For horseback guides, we recommend that you submit video.  

Please note that it is very important to let us know the dates when you will be available.  We expect crew to arrive in October, ideally for an October 4, 2021 starting date, and the seasonal commitment ends May 2, 2022.  

Feel free to contact us, preferably by email at office@elkhornranch.com, to check on the status of your application.

Attention: The Miller Family
Elkhorn Ranch
27000 W Elkhorn Ranch Road
Tucson, AZ  85736

520-822-1040 ... office@elkhornranch.com (email preferred for correspondence)

Contact Elkhorn Ranch Arizona