Saddle Up at Gateway Canyons

Gateway Canyons brings new meaning to the Old West with the debut of Palisade Ranch

Photo Courtesy Gateway Canyons

Courtesy Gateway Canyons

If there’s ever a place to spend a hard-earned summer escape, it’s Gateway Canyons Resort & Spa. Located an hour’s drive from Grand Junction in the teeny town of Gateway, the red rock-framed area fit for the likes of Ansel Adams was first inhabited by gold miners, and later became a hotbed for uranium mining in the nearby town of Uravan.

Conceived by John Hendricks, founder of The Discovery Channel and an avid car collector, the 72-room property known for adventure (think sport rifle shooting, UTV excursions, private helicopter tours, an on-site auto museum and even customized Pro-Baja Trophy Truck driven experiences) now has a brand new addition ideal for reliving the Old West: Palisade Ranch, an equestrian center situated on more than 500 acres of horseback riding trails.

At the Western playground, guests can brush up on ranch skills for a day (or choose from three- and five-day packages) with activities spanning horseback riding and roping lessons to cattle drives and ranching education. After dark, swap the day’s stories with fellow ranch hands and wranglers under the stars at a fireside cook-out.

For a break from the ranch, book a tour exploring the region’s landmarks (and even see some fossilized dinosaur tracks) with resident Curator of Curiosity Zebulon “Zeb” Miracle, a former staffer at the Museum of Western Colorado in Grand Junction.

Miracle also will take history buffs to the Hanging Flume, a local, jaw-dropping wonder featuring a 12mile open water chute built in the 1880s for mining gold. From $1,399 through September 30.

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