Cowgirling @ Circle View Ranch, SD

Can I bottle up the Circle View Ranch experience and carry it with me everywhere? Take a sip of that lovely feeling whenever needed… Staying overnight at the ranch, helping a tad in the morning with feeding the cows, and taking a tour of the property in a truck with a puppy in my lap was one of my most memorable and special experiences during my cross country road trip!

Circle View is an authentic, working cattle ranch in Interior, SD on the outskirts of Badlands National Park. It is an original homestead of ~3,000 acres with 160 cow/calf pairs and features comfortable guest quarters perched on top of their own badlands butte. Staying with Phil and Amy, you’ll get a taste of the life of the early settlers, while being pampered in contemporary furnished and luxurious setting!

Their water is full of sulphur which makes your skin amazing #stinkywaterisgoodforyou Their soil is bentonite clay and when the dust gets picked up by the wind you get a free facial scrub and mask. #dontfightthesandstorm And the sunrise over the Badlands is a sight not to be missed even if you are not a morning person – the vistas over the prairie and the badlands are spectacular! Do some yoga on the back deck at sunrise, you won’t regret it!

If you ask nicely, Phil may take you to feed the cows/calves and give you a tour of the homestead from a his cowboy pick up truck. If you are really lucky the border collie pup Boomer will sit in your lap and run around you herding you like cattle 🙂 You will get dirty but your heart will be happy! I recommend you spend 2 mornings at Circle View Ranch and use the afternoons to hike and see Badlands National Park. #lifestartsearlyontheprairie #doasIsaynotasIdo

  • First morning to explore the property
  • Second to ride horses with Cowboy Marshall

You can schedule a true western style horseback ride with Cowboy Marshall from Hurley Butte Ranch which is 5 miles away and see how the ranchers herd cattle on horseback. His horses are mellow, well trained, and suitable for all levels of riders.

The closest gas station is the Cowboy Corner in Interior and it is as authentic of an establishment as it gets, versus the overly commercialized Wall Drug in Wall, SD.

And here is a little history which I found particularly fascinating:
The homestead was initially started in the 1880s by the Hamm family. According to the Homesteading Act for Western Expansion, the government would give you 160 acres if you could survive off the land for 5 years. #iwontsurvive5days Life on the prairies was tough for the first settlers. Dakota territories tough! Initially the settlers wanted to farm and they were very unsuccessful cultivating the grasslands. It took some time for them to realize that these “barren” lands would be more conducive to ranching and raising cattle instead. The original homestead by the river was restored in the 1990s to a cabin that is rented for camping today. There is no electricity, water, WiFi, or heat – stay there if you dare!

The ranch owner, Phil, is the youngest of 8 kids and he was called back by his father to take care of the ranch. Phil and Amy have 3 kids of their own, who are homeschooled and are the most incredible, mature, kind, and social children I’ve ever met. Based on the results, I think Amy should homeschool all the kids in this country… She should also cook for everyone! Amy’s breakfast was finger-licking good! ❤ Amy!

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