- You can participate in all ranch activities on horseback: herding, searching for lost calves, branding, vaccinating and castrating
- The Tylett family will give you a warm welcome - their family have been ranching for 5 generations
- Camp in the territory of the last wild Mustangs
- A real working ranch
Day 1 1: LONDON - BILLINGSBest Western Clock Tower InnFly from London to Billings Montana. Arrive late afternoon and stay overnight in a hotel in Billings. Billings is a nice little town with good restaurants and a relaxed atmosphere.
Please note that this night is not included in the cost of your holiday and you are welcome to book your own hotel accommodation if you wish to. We will be happy to provide a quotation.
Day 2 2: BILLINGS - LOVELLMontana CampYou will have a free day to explore Billings. You will be met at the BW Clock Tower Inn between 17:00 and 18:00 and transferred to the ranch (c. 3H drive). Until late June, you will stop en route in a western store for any outstanding purchases (from July the location of the camp will not allow it). Arrive at the camp and meet the horses, cowboys and the family.
Please note: You can choose to rent a car and stay longer in the United States after your ranch holiday. Yellowstone Park is especially worth visiting and is only a 2:30 hour drive from the ranch.
The following program is by no means comprehensive but reflects all the activities in which you are able to participate. The weeks working from the ranch are broken up by the cattle drives.
Day 3 3: LOVELL - 5 to 7 hours on horsebackMontana CampHead to the corral after breakfast to catch your horse, this will involve roping! You will be given instructions first on how to ride western and how to tack and untack your horse.
The aim of the day is to gather 120 cows and their calves and drive them to a new pasture inanticipation of branding the calves the next day. A picnic lunch will be enjoyed along the way. Return to the camp in the evening for a well deserved hearty dinner.
Day 4 4: LOVELL - 5 to 7 hours on horsebackMontana CampToday will be spent "Branding" or marking the cattle. You will ride out to find the herd that you gathered yesterday. Once the herd is contained in the bottom of a narrow valley, so they can not scatter, a large fire will be made in which the irons are placed. Some riders will be responsible for keeping the cattle together in the herd, two others will rope the calves out and seperate them from the rest of the herd. When the calves mother has been identified, the same marking will be applied to the calve. Two riders will then hold the calve on the ground while others mark it with the hot iron, tag its ear and vaccinate it. A well deserved lunch break at midday and then you can switch roles! Hip and his team teach you how to use a lasso and you can quickly get practicing with the herd. Return to the camp early in the evening.
Day 5 5: LOVELLMontana CampToday you need to move another herd to a fresh pasture in order for the grazed pastures to recover. This will take the whole day because the distances are huge and the cows are scattered. Also you will need to sort the cattle as they will not all go in the same pasture. Return to camp late in the day. This evening practice your roping skills if you wish to as tomorrow is devoted to branding and castrating calves.
Day 6 6: LOVELL - 5 to 7 hours on horsebackMontana CampAnother day of "branding" today. The cattle are already in the same pasture, so your first job is to make a fire. Today everyone can help to catch the calves. The older ones will be castrated, this operation only takes a few seconds. Return to camp late in the day.
Day 7 7: LOVELL - 5 to 7 hours on horsebackMontana CampRide through beautiful scenery towards the Big Horn Canyon. You can see remnants from the past as you ride past abandoned cabins, old carriage wheels, old corrals for horses left behind by the pioneers. It is not uncommon to find arrowheads and it is easy to imagine herds of bison roaming free through these vast areas. You will feel that you have worked hard when you find missing cows and those that need care. Back to the ranch in the late afternoon.
Day 8 8: LOVELL - 5 to 7 hours on horsebackMontana CampToday you will move several herds of cattle to new pastures. From up on the mountainside opposite the canyon, you will be able to see the entire ranch and how their land dominates the whole area extending accross to the horizon.
Your last evening at the ranch, the evening will be spent around the camp fire.
Day 9 9: LOVELL - BILLINGSBest Western Clock Tower InnThis morning after you have had a leisurely breakfast, you will be transfered to your hotel in Billings. You leave camp around 9:30 a.m. and arrive in Billings April through June at 1:00 p.m. July through September you arrive at 11:30 a.m.
Transfers are only included to and from the Billings Airport and the Best Western Clock Tower Inn.
Please note this hotel night is not included in the listed price and is optional. There are very few flights leaving from Billings in the afternoon so we recommend spending a night at a hotel and catching a flight the next day.
Day 10 10: BILLINGS - LONDONReturn flight to London or maybe extend your trip.
Why not pay a visit to the beautiful Yellowstone Park, not very far from Billings?
Day 11 11Arrive in London
Dates & prices
- The first night hotel accommodation in Billings is not included.
- Gratuities are not included and are payable locally (approx. 15%)
- The maximum group size is usually 18 riders
- There is no possibility of a single person tent, except in exceptional circumstances
- Transfers to and from Billings are included.
- An electronic travel authorisation (ESTA) is required to enter the USA. It is your responsibility to organise this. Please visit https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov/ and contact us if you need help.
The itinerary may be modified at anytime for security reasons, meteorological or events beyond our control such as blocked roads, rivers in flood, drought, strikes and local holidays. Equus Journeys, our local partners and their local guides will always strive to find the best solution and will alter the itinerary as needed.
The names of the hotels and accommodation are given for information only and depending on availability, they may be modified without notice and replaced by another of a similar standard.
Price doesn't include
Meals in Billings
May - June 2020
Departure Return Price without flights Price including flights Status 12/06/2020 22/06/2020 £1,310 Guaranteed departure Book now 19/06/2020 29/06/2020 £1,310 Guaranteed departure Book now
July - August 2020
Departure Return Price without flights Price including flights Status 03/07/2020 13/07/2020 £1,390 Guaranteed departure Book now 10/07/2020 20/07/2020 £1,390 Guaranteed departure Book now 24/07/2020 03/08/2020 £1,390 Full 31/07/2020 10/08/2020 £1,390 Full 14/08/2020 24/08/2020 £1,390 Full 21/08/2020 31/08/2020 £1,390 Full
May - June 2021
Departure Return Price without flights Price including flights Status 28/05/2021 07/06/2021 £1,365 Guaranteed departure Book now 18/06/2021 28/06/2021 £1,365 Guaranteed departure Book now 25/06/2021 05/07/2021 £1,365 Guaranteed departure Book now
July - August 2021
Departure Return Price without flights Price including flights Status 09/07/2021 19/07/2021 £1,445 Guaranteed departure Book now 16/07/2021 26/07/2021 £1,445 Guaranteed departure Book now 30/07/2021 09/08/2021 £1,445 Guaranteed departure Book now 06/08/2021 16/08/2021 £1,445 Guaranteed departure Book now 20/08/2021 30/08/2021 £1,445 Guaranteed departure Book now 27/08/2021 06/09/2021 £1,445 Guaranteed departure Book now
Minimum riding ability
Minimum riding ability
Rider's weight limit: 100kg, 225 lbs, approx. 16 stones.
Tacking ability and participation
Trip conditions and Requested experience
You can also bring leather straps and spurs if you wish.
We recommend our riders to wear a helmet to the correct standard and you should bring your own to ensure a proper fit.
- Picnic lunch
- Copious hot meals for dinner
Water is available at the camp.
Alcohol is not provided but you are welcome to bring your own drinks.
Guide and local team
- Equus Journeys strongly recommend that you wear a riding helmet and that you take your own to ensure a correct fit. There are many lightweight options available nowadays
- Sunhat for when not riding
- Sunglasses - with a cord attached so they don't fly off when riding
- Buff or bandana
- Warm hat for cold nights when camping
- Thermals (long or short sleeved)
- Long sleeved shirts provide protection from the sun and are an extra layer
- Lightweight fleece or jumper
- Warm fleece or jumper (and a spare in case one gets wet)
- Warm and waterproof jacket - it can rain at any time of year and the evenings can be particularly cold
- Swimming costume - for swimming/bathing in rivers/hot springs
- Lightweight, comfortable riding trousers or jodhpurs - we recommend riding in them at home before taking them on holiday to ensure they don't rub
- Casual trousers for the evenings, such as jeans or tracksuit bottoms
- Waterproof over trousers
Hands and Feet
- Comfortable riding boots. We recommend short boots with half chaps but you may wish to take long chaps as an extra layer against inclement weather. We don't recommend taking your favourite long leather boots in case they get damaged
- Waterproof shoes/boots can be useful for abundant dew in the mornings or when it rains
- Trainers or equivalent light shoes for moving around the camp in the evenings
- Several pairs of warm, thick socks
- Gloves - your hands are particularly exposed to the sun, cold or rain whilst riding. Waterproof gloves can be particularly useful
- Sleeping bag. You need at least a comfort factor down to minus 5 celsius, but would recommend at least minus 8 or 10 celsius
- Sleeping bag liner - silk, cotton or fleece - adds an extra layer
- inflatable mattress
- Pyjamas or tracksuits or thermals for sleeping in
- Please don't take a hard sided suitcase. Your luggage should be soft sided with a capacity of 60-80 litres. We recommend taking a backpack or similar.//
- Hard sided suitcase are not permitted on this ride as your luggage is carried by packhorses. It should be soft sided with a capacity of 80-100 litres. We recommend taking a backpack or similar.
- Backpacks cannot be worn whilst riding. We recommend a small bumbag or a coat with pockets so that you can carry small items with you during the day (passport, camera, sunscreen, lipbalm etc)
- We recommend travelling in your riding boots and carrying your hat and some riding clothes in your hand luggage - then if your luggage goes astray you are still able to ride!
- Tall riders may benefit from taking a pair of long stirrup leathers with them (the local stirrups are adjustable but are sometimes limited in length)
- Even if foam mattresses are provided, you may pack your inflatable mattress for comfort sake.
Other useful items
- Towels - camping ones will both dry and pack more easily
- Small backpack for accessing items required during the day (carried by support crew)
- Camera and high capacity memory card. Spare battery
- Bumbag for carrying your camera and small items whilst riding
- Headtorch or small torch for moving around camp at night - bring spare batteries and bulbs
- Water bottle (2 litres or 2 x 1 litre)
- Swiss army knife
- Field glasses
- Wet Wipes or equivalent (for when washing facilities aren't available)
- Toilet paper and a lighter to burn it with
- Small plastic bags for rubbish
- Ear plugs (for light sleepers)
In your hold luggage
- Any liquids, such as shampoo, moisturiser, deodorant unless they are less than 100ml and all bottles can fit in a small, clear, plastic ziplock bag. We recommend biodegradable washing products where possible.
- Swiss army knife (or equivalent)
In your hand luggage
- Any valuables, such as your camera, ipod, ipad etc.
- Travelling in your riding boots and carrying your hat and some riding clothes is highly recommended - then if your luggage goes astray you are still able to ride!
- Any medication you regularly take
- Sunscreen and lip balm - should be high factor
- Insect repellent, preferably containing deet
- Blister plasters in case of any rubs
- Antiseptic cream, plasters, aspirin, anti-histamine, insect-bite salve etc...
- Spare prescription glasses/contact lenses
- Eye drops
- Imodium or similar anti-diarrhoea medication
- Re-hydration sachets
- Water purification tablets
- Antiseptic wipes
- Handwash gel
- We recommend taking a copy of your passport and insurance documents with you in case you lose your originals
- Please take your rubbish home with you. There are no recycling facilities in XXX, so take your used batteries, aerosols etc back home and dispose of them appropriately. Try to leave excess packaging material at home before travelling
- You may wish to take some photographs or postcards of your home with you to show your hosts. You may also wish to take some crayons, colouring books etc for the children
- If you prefer travelling in a "light way" please choose a biodegradable soap or washing powder/liquid.
Visa & Health
You’ll need prior authorisation to enter the United States using a British passport, either through a visa, a Permanent Resident Card, or the Visa Waiver Programme. To enter the United States of America, a passport valid for the duration of stay is required by Australian, British, Canadian and other EU nationals.
ENTRY REQUIREMENTS - VISA WAIVER PROGRAMME
Most passport holders can get an Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (ESTA) through the Visa Waiver Programme, which allows travel to the US for up to 90 days. Visit the official US website to apply for your ESTA: https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov/esta/
All travellers entering the USA under the Visa Waiver Program require individual machine-readable passports. Children included on a parent's passport also require their own machine-readable passport. Travellers not in possession of machine-readable passports require a valid USA entry visa.
UK Emergency Travel Documents (ETDs) aren’t valid for entry into the United States or transit through the United States under the Visa Waiver Programme; if you’re planning to enter or transit through the US using an ETD you must apply for a visa from the nearest US embassy or consulate before you travel, or hold a valid lawful permanent resident card (often referred to as a ‘green card’), which you must have with you on arrival; you can leave the US using an ETD that has been issued in the United States
Visitors to the USA travelling under the Visa Waiver Program must obtain authorisation from the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA), a fully automated, electronic system for screening passengers before they begin travel to the USA, if arriving by air or sea. It is recommended that applications are made at least 72 hours prior to travel but you may apply at any time prior to travel. Airlines must now deny check-in to passengers without a valid ESTA. There is a US$14 fee. An ESTA is valid for two years, so if you've applied for one previously, ensure it's still valid.
When applying for ESTA-authorisation and entering the passport number, the number 0 must not be replaced by letter O as this can lead to problems upon entering the USA. The granting of an ESTA does not guarantee entry to the USA. Canadian citizens do not require an ESTA, but permanent residents of Canada who are eligible for the Visa Waiver Program must obtain one.
ENTRY REQUIREMENTS - VISAS
If you don’t qualify for entry under the VWP, and don’t have a US Permanent Resident Card, you should apply for a visa from the nearest US Embassy or Consulate before travelling.
Holders of UK passports with the endorsement British Subject, British Dependent Territories Citizen, British Protected Person, British Overseas Citizen or British National (Overseas) Citizen do not qualify for the Visa Waiver Program and need to obtain a visa.
Travelers in the following categories are no longer eligible to travel or be admitted to the United States under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP):
- Nationals of VWP countries who have traveled to or been present in Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Syria, Libya, Somalia and Yemen on or after March 1, 2011 (with limited exceptions for travel for diplomatic or military purposes in the service of a VWP country).
- Nationals of VWP countries who are also nationals of Iran, Iraq, Sudan, or Syria.
IMPORTANT NOTICE FOR TRAVELERS TRANSITING THROUGH CANADA
If you are travelling to the USA visa Canada, please remember you also need to apply for an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA), mandatory for anyone transiting through Canada. Completing ESTA formalities do not replace your eTA.
Addresses of consulates
- Paris | Ambassade des Etats-Unis
2, avenue Gabriel
Tél. : 01.43.12.22.22
- Ambassade de France aux Etats-Unis
4101 Reservoir Road, N.W.
20007 Washington D.C.
Tél. : +1 (202) 944 60 00
- US Embassy
24 Grosvenor Square
W1A 2LQ London
Tél. : 020 7499-9000
Travel insurance that provides medical coverage is a requirement for visitors to the US. Only emergency cases are treated without prior payment and treatment may be refused without evidence of insurance or a deposit. All receipts for services rendered must be kept in order to make a claim. Medical care in the United States tends to be quite expensive, especially for emergency treatment provided in hospital settings, paid for out of pocket.
Budget and money
Most major credit cards are accepted throughout the USA, including American Express, Diners Club, MasterCard and Visa. Visitors are advised to carry at least one major credit card, as it is common to request pre-payment or a credit card imprint for hotel rooms and car hire, even when final payment is not by credit card. Be sure to check with your card issuer for current surcharge rates imposed for use of the card outside your home country. You should also inform your issuer that you are travelling for a specified period so your card is not flagged or temporarily suspended.
Bank-issued debit cards are accepted at many businesses in the US; however, using them to pay for many travel-related expenses, such as car hire and hotel rooms, often incurs a surcharge, deposit, or a hold on your account.
Telephone and jetlag
The country stradles a number of different time zones. Eastern Daylight time (eg. New York) is GMT -4. Mountain Daylight time (eg. Montana) is GMT -6. Pacific Daylight time (eg. California) is GMT -7.
Did you know?
Did you know?
On your working ranch holiday, expect to take part in the daily routine of life on the ranch. You will be asked to help work with the cattle and you should be prepared for it!
Branding is a necessary part of cattle management. In the vast plains of Wyoming, Colorado, or Montana, there is not always a fence to stop the livestock from roaming free in search of the greener grass. Branding the stock allows each rancher to identify their cattle and differentiate it from their neighbors. Each brand has a very specific lay-out and position on the animal. The calves are usually branded when they are 2-3 months old, anytime between March and May depending on the state and the year. The calf is roped, wrestled, and then thrown on its side in a good position close to the fire. The rest of the crew also helps with castration and vaccination.
There are many people involved in the process and you will be more than welcome to pitch in and help: there will be a job for you! Some riders prefer to stand on the side and watch for a little bit, it is up to you to decide if you are up to the physical requirements of the work.