True West Horsemanship - Ben Longwell
Ben Longwell - True West Horsemanship Ltd
  Ranch Tour - Wyoming Spring Branding - FULLY BOOKED!

Ben Longwell Ben Longwell Ben Longwell
  In 2019 we have something very exciting happening....3 different Ranch Tours!!! After 5 successful Ranch Tours over 2014-2018 we were fully booked for our Ranch Tour in Montana a year in advance and have opened up a second week in Montana.

But - the even more exciting news - is we are also going to a new Ranch for a totally different experience. We offered this Tour to our previous Ranch Tour guests a unique and exclusive chance to book this Tour before we advertised it to anyone else and had 6 book instantly. Guests will join Ben for a Spring Cattle Branding experience on a Ranch in north east Wyoming, in the Black Hills.

Below is a layout of potentially how the trip will look! Spots are strictly limited to 8, so if you are interested – do not delay in letting us know!
Ben Longwell   Ben Longwell

Where: We will be travelling to north eastern Wyoming, to experience the life of the true cowboy on this 4th generation working cattle guest ranch, where you will see and live the life of a cowboy first-hand. A sturdy horse will become your new best friend as you cover miles of mesas and ride the open range.

A bit different:
Our Tour to Wyoming will be a bit different from the Tour we have to Montana. Here you are going to have a hands on Branding experience - time to get down and dirty and 'rub some dirt in it'. During the week long stay at the Ranch (which was homesteaded in 1886), we are going to be sharing the experience of rounding up the cattle for a springtime branding of the calves and possibly gathering & moving the some newly shipped-in cattle. Branding is an important part of Ranch life to identify the owner of cattle. The traditional way is to gather the cow/calf pairs into a corral, split off the mother cows, rope the calves and have a couple of 'calf wrestlers' to hold while the rancher brands & inspects each calf. At the same time vaccinations, drench, castrating and ear tagging will be done.
Guests will be allowed & encouraged to participate in the different aspects at the branding (some ranchers will only have the owner apply the actual brand itself - as no mistake can be made).

For the 2019 Branding Tour we will be meeting up with everyone in Rapid City, South Dakota on 13th May 2019. The Escorted Ranch Tour will end in Rapid City on 23rd May, when you will have the opportunity to book further travel in the US (read further down for more info).

Ben will escort you in the American West where he is originally from! If you have only ever travelled to California or New York – you are missing out on an incredible part of the country, as every region in America is so diverse.

We will have a shopping day on the 14th in Rapid City, where Ben will take you to some great Western style tack & clothing stores and a saddlery. We will then head over to the historic and famous town of Deadwood. On the 15th we will have a chance to discover the town and visit the Boot Hill Gold Mine for a tour and a chance to pan for gold yourself. The morning of the 16th we will visit the local museum before heading to the Ranch.

Guests will have a 7 night stay at the Ranch, participating in real ranch work, spring cattle branding, moving cattle, riding horses, learning more about roping, horsemanship & stockmanship. On the Ranch both Ben and the Rancher will take you out for daily ranch riding. At some point during the stay on the Ranch, Ben may take you to visit Devils Tower and the visitor centre.
Ben Longwell Longwell Ranch Tour

Longwell Ranch Tour

Longwell Ranch Tour

Longwell Ranch Tour

Longwell Ranch Tour

Ben Longwell Ranch Tour

Ben Longwell Ranch Tour

Ben Longwell Ranch Tour

Ben Longwell Ranch Tour

Ben Longwell

The hotels we will stay in are 3+ stars, you may choose to have your own room or shared in the hotels we stay in (additional fee for own room).

The Ranch facilities are simple, comfortable and always clean. Please note - each room at the Ranch may be a 'sharing' situation (for either a couple or 2 friends). We will do our best to give guests as much room as possible and may have a situation where there is a single occupancy room - but this is not guaranteed.
There are 4 cabins, 2 of them would suit a couple (queen bed, small living area, bathroom). 2 cabins are larger, each has 2 bedrooms (1 room with queen, 1 room with bunks) and both bedrooms share a living area & bathroom.
Cabins will be booked on first-served basis by us depending on our booking numbers. The Ranch has the convenience of wifi at the lodge to keep in touch with family & emergencies - but otherwise you can look forward to being "unplugged" for a week.

Tuesday we will have a day of shopping in Rapid City. Ben will make sure he gets you to the local tack shops, saddlery and western stores. We suggest packing your suitcase light - or booking an additional bag on the return trip to accommodate all your new purchases. We have had a couple of guests on our Tours buy a new western saddle and we have a great contact to ship this back to NZ for you cheaper than post!

Historic Deadwood:
The discovery of gold in the southern Black Hills in 1874 set off one of the great gold rushes in America. In 1876, miners moved into the northern Black Hills. That’s where they came across a gulch full of dead trees and a creek full of gold and Deadwood was born.
Practically overnight, the tiny gold camp boomed into a town that played by its own rules that attracted outlaws, gamblers and gunslingers along with the gold seekers. Wild Bill Hickok was one of those men who came looking for fortune. But just a few short weeks after arriving, he was gunned down while holding a poker hand of aces and eights – forever after known as the Dead Man’s Hand. Calamity Jane also made a name for herself in these parts and is buried next to Hickok in Mount Moriah Cemetery.
We will spend a day and a half exploring Deadwood, including time to wander the historic streets, shopping, explore the museum and visit a historic gold mine with your chance to pan and 'strike it rich'.

During the tour all food for breakfasts at your hotels and dinners in Rapid City & Deadwood are included in the package price. 1 drink at dinner is included, additional drinks are left up to the individual to purchase.
3 Lunches while out and about (Tue/Wed/Thu) are up to individuals, we will take you to local restaurants, but meal cost and choice are up to you.
All meals at the Ranch are included in your package price and served family style. Most special dietary requirements can be accommodated - but some may incur an extra cost (like vegan).

Alcohol at the Ranch is BYO – before we head out of Rapid City we will stop at Walmart for anyone who would like to purchase their own wine/beer/soda to have during dinner time. Any sort of alcohol is not permitted prior to or during riding activities.

Travel Insurance:
Insurance is required, but as many people like to make their own arrangements for this or have the option free with their credit card – this price is not included in the package price. Our travel agent who will book the trip for us is able to arrange this for you if you prefer. Please make sure you are covered for horse riding!

Further Travel:
As one of your biggest costs is the price of airline tickets to and from the US – we recommend making additional travel plans after the Escorted Tour is finished. You are in the heart of the West and there are endless adventures awaiting. Our travel agent can help you book additional travel or tours – or you can just ask her to have your return dates adjusted and hire a car and explore!
You will only be 35minutes from Mt Rushmore when we drop you back to Rapid City. If you would like further ideas of things to see in the American West, we/our travel agent would be happy to make suggestions.
Ben Longwell Longwell Ranch Tour

Longwell Ranch Tour

Longwell Ranch Tour

Longwell Ranch Tour

Longwell Ranch Tour

Longwell Ranch Tour
Ben Longwell Weight Limit/Riding Ability:
As you will be ‘in the saddle’ for most of the week – and days working with cattle could be long - we recommend this trip for experienced riders. The Ranch has a weight limit of 113kgs and riders must be comfortable at all 3 gates. Riding helmets are provided for all riders who want one - otherwise a helmet release will need to be signed by those who wish to wear just a hat.

Group Size & Age Restriction:
We have a max of 6 guests on the trip to secure the exclusive use of the Ranch. The trip is designed for those 16 years and over.
This is a more exclusive trip size - for a smaller group feel and more personalised attention.

Most Kiwis have a bit of a hard time or feel a little intimidated with this concept as we are just not use to tipping – it’s just a part of life in the US. We can help you out with this, but for the main part of this trip (the stay at the Ranch & meals) – we have included it in the price.

Flights are not included in your package price. Guests have the choice to either use our travel agent or arrange their flights with their own agent. We will meet you in Rapid City, South Dakota at 4pm in the hotel on Monday 13th May.

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  2019 Cost:
Double Occupancy = NZ$5250 pp + flights (shared room in hotels & shared room at Ranch)
(based on exchange rate on 26/8/18 of $1.47)

Single Occupancy = NZ$5600 pp (own room in hotels & shared room at Ranch)
(based on exchange rate on 26/8/18 of $1.47)

Price is per person and includes hotels in Rapid City (1 night) & Deadwood (2 nights), Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday dinner, ghost town museum, week stay at the Ranch (incl food/accommodation/activities), tax & gratuity, transfer to/from ranch

**Please note!!** the prices above are based on current exchange rate. The price in NZ$ could change if the exchange rate rises/falls.

A $300 non-refundable deposit is required to secure your spot on the trip. 50% of total is due on November 30th and final 50% payment March 31st.
Ben Longwell   Ben Longwell

So... are you coming with us?
We have been working hard to make this an amazing opportunity for those who are interested in and passionate about horses, Western culture, and/or the cowboy life! This trip will be full of adventure, don’t miss out on your spot - they go fast!

Email: to book your spot or for more information!

True West Horsemanship Ltd - email: