Secret Hideaway: Bucks and Spurs Guest Ranch
Live a cowboy fantasy at this working ranch in the Missouri Ozarks.
The Ranch: This 700-acre Ozarks cattle farm is located in the home of the Missouri Fox Trotter, "the Cadillac of trail horses." Owners Sonny and Cecil "C" Huff lead trail rides across open fields, host weenie roasts on the banks of Big Beaver River, and let you see real horse whisperers at work.
Where You'll Sleep: Four separate rooms with private baths in two rustic log cabins the Huffs built with timber from their land.
What You'll Eat: Join the Huff family table for ranch-style breakfasts and hearty dinners that usually include grass-fed Angus beef from the ranch. Bag lunches are eaten on the trail.
Who Goes There: Horse lovers and families craving an inside glimpse of a working ranch. City slickers are paired with mellow steeds, and skilled riders can join a cattle roundup.
You'll Love It If: You want the cowboy fantasy without the dude ranch drawbacks (big groups, worn-out campfire tales).
You Won't Love It If: Your deal breakers include family-style dinners and lots of interaction with your hosts and fellow guests.
Authentic Ranch Moment: Watching "C," a champion horse trainer, whisper his way onto an unridden stallion in less than an hour.
What You'll Take Home: An appreciation for the benefits (and flavor) of beef raised the old-fashioned way.
From $200 per night, with meals and daytime activities; bucksandspurs.com or 417/683-2381