Drowsy Water

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Closing down shop

Summer has come to an end and so has our fun with guests, family, and friends.  We had a wonderful 2016 summer.  Now we take the time to drain the pipes, clean out the refrigerators, pull the horse shoes and send the herd out to fall pasture.  It's a bittersweet feeling saying goodbye to our summer.  We are sad to say goodbye to all our great guests and staff, but happy to see life return to a less hectic pace.  We watch as the leaves fall to the ground and we look forward to all the adventures and peace and quiet our winters hold.

We were lucky enough to have one special friend visit this summer that took some great photos to capture what we love so much about being here.  Amazing photos like these from Nell Pollak make sure we won't forget the memories made this summer and that we look forward to many more summer memories to come.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Back to Saddle School

With students heading back to schools around the country, it's hard not to think about pencils and school shoes.  Here at Drowsy Water, we have a few rebel boys (and girls) still hanging around the ranch, not ready to go back to lined paper and pink erasers.  Nope, these boys aren't giving up on summer yet.  Want to come along for an all-day ride with one such group of range-riding fellas?  Come see that they might be learning more by being back in the saddle than back in school.

It's not a traditional classroom, but we certainly provide some kind of cowboy class here at Drowsy Water Ranch.  During the day, these bandit boys are learning about horses, about the mountains, and hearing all kinds of stories told about both the facts of the Ute Indians and flora and fauna of Colorado to the fictional, local lore of witches, dragons, and more.  At night, they are playing games with kids from all over the world, singing songs and acting for a crowd, and getting to spend quality time with their family.  They are learning, all right, they just don't have to take a bus to get here; in fact, they usually take a horse.  

And lunch in a cafeteria?  Not for these boys. Try finding your own fallen tree to munch your mid-day meal.  With a sandwich and sides packed at the ranch, the trusty horses carry the lunch bag with ease to any one of our favorite destinations for lunch on the trail.  
Ready to line up for recess? Not a bad view to keep you dreaming of all you can conquer in the world.  Now, stop dreaming, boys, time to play! 
Baseball you say? Where is the field? That way? Okay! 
But we forgot our bats and our balls! Oh, sticks will work, you're right, and that fruit we didn't eat at lunch sure seems to look a lot like a baseball. Batter up!
Good game, now back in the saddle and home we go, winding our way through the woods and the brush.  Soon you'll all be back in chairs, sitting at a desk. We will miss you here at the ranch, and we sure hope all your teachers get to see you smile this big.   

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

In the swing of things

Our 2016 season is well under way. We have a few weeks under our belt now, the staff is trained and working hard, the guests are smiling and having fun, and the horses are shiny and healthy.  Nell Pollak, long time guest and staff member, recently took a break from her L.A. life to visit, work, and take some awesome photos. Here are just a few from her album that capture a week at Drowsy Water Ranch. In the photo up top, Ken cooks up breakfast ride eggs as part of his weekly tradition. How many eggs on the menu this week? 140 eggs will be scrambled up tomorrow morning for our full house of guests.

The horses head out to pasture. 

Peyton heads in to the ranch on Slider. He is her barrel racing horse and probably her best friend. 

The staff end the week with The Staff Show: an assortment of songs, awards, and silly skits.  

The herd at pasture: lucky horses to get to have so much room to roam. 
Chase enjoys his time at breakfast ride too. He usually is the chief assistant to Grandpa Ken while on  breakfast ride. 

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

DWR Horse Trivia

We have a number of horses around Drowsy Water Ranch.  How many? Well, you'll have to read below to find out! I'll give you a hint--it's a big number. We like it that way so we can confidently know we can have a horse for every rider in your family during your vacation at DWR.  Read below for a few fun trivia questions about our herd. Answers are all at the bottom. 

Q1. How many horses are in the Drowsy Water Herd?
Q2. What is the average age of the herd?
Q3. Does Drowsy Water own more mares or geldings?
Q4. How many horses currently in the herd were born at Drowsy Water?
Q5. How much grain does the Drowsy Water herd go through during the summer season? 

A1: The Drowsy Water Herd usually boasts around 120 horses.  Every year we buy a few horses, we have a few horses pass away, and we sell a few horses. 
A2. The average age of our herd is about 16 years old.  We strive to buy horses that are 10 or younger and we keep many of our horses into their twenties. 
A3. We have 73 geldings and 39 mares.  We love our sassy mares as much as we love our goofy geldings. 
A4.  We have eight horses born and raised at DWR: Serenade, Scout, Brighty, Autumn, Cody, Mariah, Navajo, and Aspen.  They are all used regularly and know the trails better than some of the wranglers! 
A5. The herd consumes around 36,000 pounds of grain each summer.  We have grain delivered in bulk to our silos about three or four times per summer.  Grain is portioned and fed by hand one to two times daily to the herd. 

Friday, March 25, 2016

March Mooodness

Like many folks enjoying life off the ranch, March at Drowsy Water involves a lot of watching, waiting and holding your breath. No, we're not huge basketball fans, but our game now is about the cows and their calves.  We wait, we watch, we check, we repeat.
Just down the road from the ranch, we keep our herd of about 30 cows.  All the cows should be bred ---seeing as we put our bull with them about 272 days ago--but we didn't have the vet check to make sure this year.  We can make an educated guess based on the size of their bellies that most of them are, indeed, pregnant.  Everyday, we check multiple times to see if we have any new calves.
Usually the process of a cow birthing her calf is something that nature takes care of just fine.  The cow will go off on her own, lay down in what is usually a dry and protected place, and, a few hours later, she has a calf.  We then check that the calf and cow are healthy: a new calf should be dry and able to stand and nurse the mother shortly after birth and the mother should be able to stand and allow her calf to nurse.

The weather is a big concern during calving season.  We prefer to have the cows give birth on dry, sun-warmed ground but mother nature doesn't always cooperate.  The calves are born wet and they rely on their mother to lick them clean and dry.  If born in a snowstorm or on wet ground, the calf can't get dry and can't get warm.  We take extra care in snow and wet to make sure the calf is dry. We towel dry them, warm them in the truck,  or keep them inside if needed.
After a cow has her calf, she is instictively protective.  Some of our cows are friendly enough to let us get close enough to put an ear tag on their calf without much protest while others have to be tricked with grain or separated before we can tag and check the calf.  Either way, all the cows watch us carefully as we walk through their nursery.

When it is all said and done, we hope to have 30 new calves that spend the summer with their mom on open range eating grass and growing.

Monday, March 7, 2016

This is it! DWR in Parents Mag!

Looking for your next great family all-inclusive vacation? THIS IS IT! 

We are proud to say we made it on Parents Magazine's Best All-Inclusive Travel list.  

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Willing the warmth from inside the DWR kitchen

It's February at Drowsy Water and we are still in the thick of winter.  We've seen a few warm days lately and we have watched as our mountainous snow banks have melted down to mere snow hills.  The little break in the cold reminds us just how much we miss the sun's warmth during these winter months and it reminds us just how much we look forward to our days roaming the mountains in the summer sun.  In the meantime, we continue to hunker down inside much of the time finding ways to keep busy until working and playing outside is a little more inviting.  

In an effort to will the sun to warm us, we baked up some of our favorite summer time lunch treats: Drowsy Water's homemade lemon bars.  Bake some today then close your eyes and feel the warm sunshine start to melt that snow away!  

Start by making a simple crust of butter, flour, and powdered sugar. 

Mix the three ingredients until it resembles a coarse meal. Then press the crust into the bottom of a 9x11 pan.  Pop the crust in the oven at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. 

While you wait for the crust, get a start on your lemony filling. 

Crack four eggs into a bowl and add 1 1/2 cups sugar. 
Next add 1 teaspoon of lemon rind and 1/3 cup lemon juice. 

Mix this filling for a good six minutes or so until it begins to get airy and light. 
Add 1/4 cup flour and 1 teaspoon baking powder to the filling mixture. 
Your crust should be out of the oven by now and looking just a tiny bit brown around the edges. 
Pour the filling mixture on the crust.  Bake for another 20-30 minutes at 350 degrees until the top is slightly brown and the filling is set.  Allow to cool. 

Sprinkle with a little powdered sugar if you'd like and maybe a few sprinkles.  Enjoy! 

Drowsy Water Ranch Lemon Bars
2 C. flour
1/2 C. powdered sugar
1 C butter

Combine crust ingredients, press into the bottom of a 9x13 pan and bake for 15 minutes at 350 degrees. 

4 eggs
1 1/2 C. sugar
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/3 C. lemon juice
1/4 C. flour
1 teaspoon baking powder

Mix together the eggs, sugar, zest and juice. Mix for 5-7 minutes until light and airy. Add flour and baking powder and mix. 

Pour filling over pre-baked crust then return to the oven for 20-30 minutes at 350 degrees.  Center should be set and top should look slightly browned. Cool. Sprinkle with powdered sugar if desired.