Room to Roam

Business Traveler (USA) - - GATHERING PLACES -

Sim­i­larly, the Ranch at Rock Creek in Philips­burg, MT, also around 90 min­utes from Mis­soula In­ter­na­tional Air­port, is a high-dol­lar lux­ury ranch that wel­comes meet­ings and busi­ness trav­el­ers with a full ros­ter of ameni­ties and fa­cil­i­ties.

The prop­erty has 95 beds across 38 rooms in the lodge, cabin houses and lux­ury tents, plus more than 10,000 acres to roam amid Mon­tana’s wide-open prairies. There is plenty of out­door space to take care of large groups in ter­race and pa­tio spreads and tem­po­rary can­vas pavil­ions. A bowling cen­ter/bar and lounge han­dles the post-din­ner play and, as a work­ing ranch, you’ll find scores of horses ready to be sad­dled and plenty of cat­tle wan­der­ing the foothill paths.

Rid­ing there, un­like many ranch re­sorts out West, is on de­mand and ac­cord­ingly what and when the guest wants it – not when the ranch hands have a line ready to go out. All rid­ers are wel­come here – walk‘em, trot‘em, even can­ter and run. BYOB, or else boots and chaps can be pro­vided at no charge.

Fly-fish­ing, too, hap­pens on de­mand in the creek or rivers, or in se­cret spots known to the staff. Leave the tackle on the banks and take a fam­ily-sized in­ner tube for a float down Rock Creek in warmer weather.

All is in­clu­sive here, from horse­back rides (all skill lev­els ac­com­mo­dated), fly fish­ing, raft­ing, guided (and solo for the ad­ven­tur­ous) hikes along seem­ingly end­less miles of scenic trails, the sooth­ing salt­wa­ter pool, the gourmet meals (meat­loaf is a must-have here, as is the veni­son), the wine list and the bowling and movies af­ter­wards.

Op­er­ated as a work­ing ranch, it’s not un­usual to round up an er­rant steer or two while rid­ing a rugged trail on horse­back. Guests need only bring the right clothes and shoes. All else is pro­vided -the gear, the tackle, the shoot­ing equip­ment (Glocks in­cluded) and the moun­tain bikes.

Added ameni­ties in­clude a spa de­signed some­what like West­world meets Green­wich Vil­lage, a salt­wa­ter pool, a plethora of prairie dogs and nights full of stars. Din­ing is as cre­ative as one

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