Posts Tagged ‘Creede Colorado’

The Small Arts Town of Creede, Colorado

August 10th, 2016 by 4ur ranch

fireworks light up evening sky aove the small arts town of Creede ColoradoWe at the 4UR feel very grateful to be situated near a small arts town rich in history and culture. Creede, Colorado is home to several art galleries, a true repertory theatre and master watercolorist, Steve Quiller.

The 4UR Ranch is surrounded by the stunning scenery of the San Juan Mountains. It is tucked in its own little valley off highway 149, which is part of the Historic and Scenic Silver Thread Byway. Along this byway, just a short eight miles from the 4UR, is the town of Creede, Colorado.

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Revival of Cabin Fever Daze in Creede, Colorado

March 19th, 2014 by 4ur ranch

Ice sculptures illuminated for Cabin Fever Daze in Creede, CO

Ice sculptures illuminated for Cabin Fever Daze in Creede, CO

Over the Valentine’s / President’s Day weekend, Creede resurrected an old festival with a new twist: Cabin Fever Daze. (Event Page)

A Valentine’s Dance at the Elk’s lodge started off the weekend, with music by the Rifters  (with special guest, Tish Hinojosa), and ended with local band, MoJones, playing at the Tommyknocker Tavern.

Creede Elks' Dance for Valentines Day 2014 - RiftersCreede Repertory Theatre presents Boomtown Improv ShowThe Creede Community Fund (CCF) teamed with the Creede Chamber of Commerce to put on the event. The idea was to draw in the crowds during a time of year that is usually slow for our little town. Creede businesses are still slowly recovering from the hit they took during the wildfires that burned last summer (West Fork & Papoose). Even though Creede was not evacuated like the 4UR Ranch was, Highway 149, the only road into town, was closed. Because there was no evacuation, there was also no federal or insurance relief for local businesses. Cabin Fever Daze is one of many future events the Chamber and the CCF intend to put on in order to help Creede come back and flourish.

Creating the 4UR's ice sculptureThe weekend was very successful. A few hundred people came to town, most families from the San Luis Valley. There was much to do through the whole weekend: Crafters had booths set up in the Creede Community Center, a Full Moon ski/snowshoe on Friday night, a snowmobile poker run, the First Annual Curling Tournament took place on the lower Creede pond, and free ice skate “rentals” were available for families to skate on the upper pond.


First Annual Creede Curling competitionLive Music - Mojones Band - at the Tommyknocker TavernKips Gril creates a huge snow sculptureIce cutters make blocks for the Creede Ice Sculpture Contest, as part of Cabin Fever DazeThe town businesses participated in a Hot Toddy contest. The general public bought tickets and tasted samples as they walked through historic downtown Creede, voting for their favorite drink.  Local artists (including Damon Gibbons from the 4UR) carved blocks of ice set up around town. Damon came in 3rd place for his sculpture, a 4UR “trophy” cauldron, which he set on fire for his finale on Sunday. At night, burning barrels illuminated street corners. The Creede Repertory Theatre opened on Saturday night for a packed performance of their improv show, Boomtown. Artist Stephen Quiller, who will be teaching two workshops at the 4UR this summer, opened his show “Beauty in the Burn.” The paintings are breathtaking, and his studio definitely worth a visit when stopping in Creede. Jennifer Inge  displayed her “CreedeHeart “ necklace for the weekend; and a preview of her upcoming jewelry line, “Out from the Ashes.” There were fireworks set off by Jenna Ford, a silent auction to raise money for the Creede Community Fund, and an all-church service set in the canyon uptown, surrounded by the beautiful cliffs of Creede.

4UR was present throughout, from ice sculpture, to a silent auction donation, and a general sponsor of the whole weekend’s event. We can truly say that we are “Creedehearts”, and feel very blessed to be near this wonderful, vibrant, and thriving community. If you have been curious to visit Creede in the winter, may we suggest coming to Cabin Fever Daze. You will be enchanted!


Horse-drawn carriage rides up and down Main Street, Creede

Horse-drawn carriage rides up and down Main Street, Creede

Creede, Colorado and the Thread of History

September 13th, 2013 by Corey A. Edwards

The Upper Rio Grande Valley of Colorado’s southern Rockies was known to the native peoples well before anyone ever considered founding a town called Creede, Colorado here. The Paleo-hunters who discovered the area found it to be a good, summer hunting ground and enjoyed the hot springs in what would one day be called Wagon Wheel Gap. The nomadic Utes gave special significance to the formations in the Wheeler Geologic Area and had known the area for time out of mind when settlers arrived.

Creede, Colorado - Nicholas Creede & Nephew Harvey Lester, 1870 - Creede Historical Society Archive #3069-P-434

Creede’s namesake, Nicholas Creede with Nephew Harvey Lester, 1870 (Creede Historical Society Archive #3069-P-434)

A group of these settlers, including Kit Carson’s brother-in-law, Tom Boggs, were farming at Wagon Wheel Gap as early as 1840, spurred on by the discovery of gold in the San Juan Mountains. Prospectors and others were lured to the area by the promise of the wealth of the San Juan’s boom. By the mid–1870s, you even had tourism. Books and pamphlets enticed Easterners and Europeans to come experience the American West. Again, years before there was a town called Creede, Colordo you could book a room at a hotel in Wagon Wheel Gap.

Then, in 1890, Nicholas Creede discovered a high-grade silver vein in a tributary of the Rio Grande. Within weeks the boom camp’s population swelled to 10,000 – about 9,000 more than there are in all of Mineral County today. By 1892, over a million dollars in silver had been mined, making Colorado a “boom” state once again. The town that sprang up around Nicholas Creede’s find took his name and the rest, as they say, is history.

For over a century, our ranch, originally the Wagon Wheel Gap Hotel, has welcomed visitors to the area. People who come here expect to enjoy a simpler, slower way of life. To get a mountain experience, rich with history and the pure beauty of the natural world.

Soak in hot springs the Ute’s valued for their healing powers, tour the mines that powered the boom, relive the storied history of the American West: time stands still at the 4UR Dude Ranch.

The Ultimate Fly Fishing Vacation

April 11th, 2012 by Gail

We strive to create the ultimate fly fishing vacation here at 4UR Colorado Guest Ranch.

Creede Colorado Fly Fishing and Dude Ranch

Goose Creek makes it easy. One of the only entirely private tailwater trout streams in the country, Goose Creek runs swift and clear. It starts at the southern edge of the 4UR property as a small waterfall below Lake Humphreys dam. As it flows north it gently twists and turns, resting now and again in deep pools until it joins the Rio Grande.

Fly fishing on Goose Creek.

It’s a remarkable experience to stand in waders, playing with the line, catching fish. And catch fish we do, every day, at every station. Some stations are nestled in steep, alpine canyons. Other sections of the river run through wide, open pastures.

Every angler learns where he or she will fish the night before, when Aaron Christensen escorts a shake bottle from table to table after dinner. The lottery winner gets first pick of station, followed by other anglers until the lowest lottery draw selects. In the afternoon, the order is reversed. All stations are good, however, for the fish swim past them all. Colorado Family Guest Ranch offers superlative fishing.

Guests may hire one of our dedicated fishing guides, or fish their stretch alone. It’s as you like it, here at 4UR Colorado Guest Ranch. And that’s how we like it.

Celebrate Special Occasions at 4UR

September 19th, 2011 by Gail

The season is drawing to a close here at 4UR, our Creede Colorado Guest Ranch; this is the last week we’ll welcome guests in 2011. It’s always a bittersweet time for those of us who work at the ranch. We bid farewell to all our guests and summer staff, then we start to ready the ranch for winter and prepare to hunker down. We don’t exactly hibernate here from October to April, but the pace of life definitely slows down.

We’ve already started looking ahead to next season, and some folks have already made their reservations for 2012.

This is a good time to start thinking about celebrating a special occasion at 4UR. There’s ample time yet to contact friends and family and to coordinate schedules. Are you (or your folks or your grandparents) celebrating an important anniversary this year? Silver? Gold? Is your son or daughter graduating from a high school or  college? Are you retiring? Significant events merit something out of the ordinary.

Sometimes, the best way to celebrate is simply to go someplace beautiful with the people you care about most in the world. Spend time together. Go horseback riding. Go fishing. Hike. Relax in the hot springs. Linger over meals. You don’t have to make a big fuss over the occasion – the fact that you are all together speaks for itself.

We hope you’ll consider bringing friends and family together here at our Colorado Family Guest Ranch, to mark a significant event in your life.

Pictured above are some of the families and friends who came together at 4UR this summer.

Labor Day Weekend in Creede

September 7th, 2011 by Gail

Labor Day Weekend was great fun for all of us at 4UR, our Colorado Guest Ranch.

What to do if it's raining at our Colorado Dude Ranch? Eat more dessert!

The town of Creede goes all out for this holiday, with annual festivities such as soap box races, hot air balloon rides, and a half marathon mountain run. There is always a Salsa Fest, where local folks compete against one another for the title of best salsa maker (and we get to have fun tasting it). Labor Day Weekend is one of those special times when everyone at our Family Dude Ranch really gets to experience the community of Creede.

One of the highlights of the weekend was the pig roast – our first ever. Chef Wray Warner hist staff outdid themselves. The Leavell family, all of the 4UR staff, and all of our guests ate with gusto under clear skies. It was a beautiful evening. The pig roast looks like it will become an annual tradition; we sure hope it will!

Aside from the festivities over holiday weekend, September has been fairly quiet. Rain has encouraged our guests to indulge in massage, long soaks in our hot springs spa, and delicious meals. But of course we don’t stop outdoor activities just because of a little rain!

We close for the season on September 24, 2011. If you couldn’t make it this year, give us a call – we’re already booking for next year.

Autumn Approaches

August 15th, 2011 by Gail

It’s hard to believe, but it’s true: peak season at 4UR Colorado Family Dude Ranch has just ended. It seems like everyone just arrived, and yet our first goodbyes are upon us; a few of our college-bound staff are packing their bags and bidding us farewell. Most of us, however, will be here until we close for the season on October 1, 2011.

September at 4UR is glorious.

There is still much to do at our Colorado Family Dude Ranch outside of peak season.

Our guests fish, hike, and horseback ride as always. Together we explore trails through the Rocky Mountains on foot, on bike, and on horse. We all indulge in sumptuous meals created by Executive Chef Wray Warner and his staff, in the dining room, by the pool, and out in the wilderness. We also find time to soak in our soothing hot spring spa – essential for all who work and vacation here.

The Creede Repertory Theatre continues to wow any and all guests who make the short trek to Creede for a show. Upcoming shows include How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, The Road to Mecca, The Bad Men, Unnecessary Farce, and The Mystery of Irma Vep. Tickets are still available for most shows through the season, which ends September 24. For more information, please visit the Creede Repertory Theatre.

Give us a call if you feel you can squeeze in a few days of adventure at our Colorado Family Dude Ranch: 719.658.2202. We hope to see you soon!

Farewell to the Lees

March 12th, 2011 by 4ur admin

Departures are inherent in any vacation ranch. After all, we make our livelihood by welcoming guests to the ranch, helping them have a wonderful holiday, and then bidding them farewell. Since our Colorado Vacation Ranch is seasonal, we end up watching most of our staff depart at the end of each season, as well. It’s always hard to say goodbye, but we comfort ourselves with the knowledge that we’ll see many of our friends again the following year.

A few of us live on the ranch year round. Aaron and Robin Christensen and their four children, Damon and Kiera Gibbons and their new baby girl, and Andy and Sarah Lee and their two children. We’ve become a large “ranch family”, especially during the off-season, when few others are around.

2010 Fishing Guides: Andy (left), Jesse, Drew, and Boone.

Andy Lee started at 4UR Colorado Family Guest Ranch in 2001 as a member of the waitstaff team. He loved the land and the water, and after spending a great deal of time fishing on his own the following fall, winter, and spring, he returned to us in 2002 as a guide. He was hooked, so to speak. The more he fished, the more he wanted to fish, and eventually he became our Head Fishing Guide.

Sarah with Aaron Christensen

Sarah Lee’s first season at the ranch was the summer of 2002. She has worked on the waitstaff team, the housekeeping team, and as a nanny; in short, she has been invaluable. We have watched their children grow from infancy – Rowe is now 3, and Chapin 1.5.

We are very sad to see them go, but we wish them safe travels and the very best with their move. They’re heading to Henry’s Fork in Idaho, where they’ll be involved in the management of the Lodge. It’s a good move for them, and we’re happy for them, though we will miss them terribly.

Families at Our Colorado Family Dude Ranch

February 23rd, 2011 by 4ur admin

Perhaps families feel so at ease here at our Colorado Dude Ranch because they know the ranch depends upon families to operate. We welcome children because we have children, and we know how much kids enjoy fishing, horseback riding, and exploring the Colorado Rockies.

Our Head Wrangler, Damon Gibbons, and his wife Kiera are adapting to life as new parents. Their daughter, Adelaide, was born at their home on our Colorado Family Dude Ranch. A true Colorado native, she came into the world during a snow storm.

Sweet Adelaide

Adelaide is in good company, for there are quite a few other children already living on our Family Dude Ranch in Creede, Colorado. Head Fishing Guide Andy Lee and his wife Sarah live on the ranch with their son Rowen and daughter Chapin. Sarah has worked in Housekeeping and as our Dining Room Leader. General Manager Aaron Christensen and his wife Robin, our Reservations Manager, have four children: Cole (9), Kylee (7), Luke (5) and Laci (3). The oldest three love to ride horses. Cole won the National Little Britches Rodeo All Around last year, Kylee was a runner up at the National Little Britches Rodeo, and Luke is already competing. It remains to be seen whether or not Laci will share her siblings’ passion for riding – right now she has other interests.

The children of our Office Manager Kathy Adelman are grown, but we still see them from time to time. Kathy’s husband Jimmy is a county commissioner who guides guests of our Colorado Dude Ranch on trips to Lost Lakes, up above timberline. Their oldest son, Cody, is a fishing guide at a lodge in Alaska, and their youngest son Casey married Joni last fall – a woman he met here at 4UR.

Meet the Horses at our Colorado Dude Ranch

February 11th, 2011 by 4ur admin

The horses at our Family Dude Ranch in Creede Colorado are patiently awaiting the arrival of spring. For them, spring means fresh grass and the advent of summer. Summer means parents and children and hours on the trail and in the ring.

All of the horses (and two mules) at our Colorado Dude Ranch are shown below, introduced by our head wrangler Damon Gibbons. The video was shot on a glorious winter day, cold and crisp and clear.

Click on the link for a virtual tour of our horse herd.

Horse lineup