-Business Member Highlight-

Waunita Horse Springs Ranch

Gunnison, Colorado

Start with a great location, mix in comfortable rooms and fantastic facilities for riding, relaxation, and recreation, and then have it served up at a family-owned and operated ranch with over 50 years of experience, and well, you’ve found “The best week of your year.”


Located outside of Gunnison, Colorado, the ranch is situated at an elevation of 8,946ft in the Rocky Mountains and it’s 10 miles west of the Continental Divide. The ranch is surrounded by the Gunnison National Forest. U.S. Forest permits and private leases enable us to ride on over 100+ miles of trails. The trails are all varied, some lead you through trees and some are above the timberline.  Shoes or boots are recommended, the trails can get rocky in the mountains. 

Waunita Hot Springs Ranch was in the Colorado Dude and Guest Ranch Association for 50+ years so they know a thing or two about hosting guests and having repeat customers.  Things have changed a bit since Rod Pringle had his dream back in 1962 of running the dude ranch.  One thing that hasn’t changed is the amazing scenery, trails, and hospitality.


Originally home to the Ute Indians, Waunita Hot Springs was homesteaded in the late 1880s. At the turn of the century, Waunita Hot Springs had become famous for the hot springs. For a while, it was owned and operated by Dr. Charles Davis from Chicago who brought his patients out to spend the summers and bathe in the healing waters.

However, during the depression of the 1930s, Waunita Hot Springs changed hands a number of times due to owners falling on hard times. During the 1950’s Waunita was host to the Monarch Baseball Camp.

The Pringle family purchased the property in 1962, driving out from Texas in a 1961 Jeep and a station wagon, eventually turning it into a family destination—a guest ranch for more than 50 years.

In 2016, the Pringles decided to switch from a summer-only, week-long guest ranch experience to a full-service, year-round vacation and special event destination. Their vision is to create a place for folks to enjoy time off with friends, family, and fun. From weekends to full weeks, from resting/relaxing to riding/rafting, and from Spring Breaks to special events, Waunita is the perfect place to getaway.


Our main lodge is where most of the activity happens—the dining room for meals and snacks, the lobby for gathering for activities, and the living room for a game of pool or relaxing and enjoying conversation or a good book. It also provides lodging for most of our guests, each room with a private bath and comfortable beds. We also offer lodging in our Hillside Lodge, which is great for family groups. These provide units with four rooms each, and complete privacy.

 A short walk from the main house is the barn. The upstairs of the barn gives groups needed meeting area and the room to spread out—as well as a little bit of privacy. It also serves as the dance/music hall where some of our evening programs and activities occur—including square dancing.

Next to the barn is the corral and arena. This will be where the trail rides start and end, as well as a place to “get settled” before heading out.

And then there’s the pool. Fed by the natural hot springs, the 35×90 ft pool is one of the largest private pools in Colorado. With an adjacent bathhouse and hot tub, there’s plenty of room for swimming, splashing, and relaxing. And other activities available to keep you entertained when you’re not in the saddle!


We also have a small gift shop should you need lip balm, gloves, a cowboy hat, or clothing. In case you need to do laundry, there’s a laundry room behind the lodge with washers and dryers.

Our remote location means guests aren’t disturbed by passing traffic (maybe a yelping coyote now and then). Usually, the only creatures you encounter while riding forest trails are occasional deer and elk. And the stars are always bright in Waunita Country! The lodges are located at the edge of the forest overlooking Tomichi Dome and a high “mountain park.” Cattle can be seen grazing in the Waunita Valley.


For 2022, Waunita Hot Springs is looking to change things up a bit even more.  They are going to host two weeks of unforgettable experiences.  Mark your calendars for the week of September 4th thru the 9th or September 18th thru the 23rd. 30 people.


Two excellent meals a day, with full breakfast and all the Fixin's along with a wonderful dinner and dessert at the end of the day, prepared by a very talented cook!


Brand new 16 8x12 covered stalls, along with 12x12 panel stalls.

And ½ a bale of timothy grass per day per horse is offered if you’d like to have it, complimentary! You are provided with a private room and bath. Please call for pricing. 


Guided rides are provided every day.  It's a wide-open country so a guide will help you survey the land.


Tentative Plan of Events:

Monday  - 2 shorter rides to adjust the elevation

Tuesday - Another decent ride

Wednesday -  All day ride with a sack lunch 11,500’ to see some amazing scenery

Thursday – Cattle sorting with prizes! Novices on up are welcome.



There are just a few spots left so be sure and give them a call today to reserve your spot!  

970-641-1266  Visit their WEBSITE to see more.