Ranch Hand Wrangler Jobs at Zapata Ranch in Colorado, 2013
Zapata Ranch is a 103,000 acre working ranch and bison preserve owned by The Nature Conservancy, and managed through a one-of-a-kind partnership with Ranchlands www.ranchlands.com. Located in the San Luis Valley of Colorado adjacent to Great Sand Dunes National Park, the ranch is in the middle of one of the most scenic and ecologically diverse landscapes in the United States, and runs a 2,000 head herd of bison, and about 600 cattle, plus a wide variety of wildlife.
Their mission at Zapata Ranch is to preserve our ranch’s biodiversity and ranching heritage by living it: working together to live with the land. We are different from most ranches because even though cattle and bison provide the majority of our revenue, the “save the world” part of who they are puts us on a pathway to build bridges with the general public to widen their perspective of ranching, the important role it plays in environmental protection and preservation and the unique way of life that we are fortunate enough to be a part of.
Guests come to Zapata to have a real working ranch experience, and to enjoy and learn about nature, land conservation, and our way of life living and working on a large scale working ranch. Daily activities revolve around branding, gathering and working cattle, riding through the bison herd and Sand Dunes national park and other local areas, special event weeks that focus on horsemanship, roping, cooking, painting, photography, etc. They also provide programs that are facilitated by contract entities around fishing, white water rafting, rock climbing and interpretive nature walks.
Zapata Ranch is looking to hire 2 wranglers for the upcoming summer season.
It is the responsibility of all staff to ensure that guests have the experience of a lifetime. Wranglers will lead an international clientele on trail rides throughout the ranch and the adjoining Great Sand Dunes National Park. On rides, wranglers are expected to develop and share their knowledge about area ecology, history, and our ranch practices. Additional responsibilities include but are not limited to the care of the ranch’s 50 horses, maintenance of the corral area and a variety of lodge duties. Wranglers will also act as guides on hikes, bison tours, and other activities.
An important part of working at the Z is to come to work ready to do whatever it is to support everyone you work with. This encompasses activities that may or may not be part of individual job descriptions.
Staff are expected to present a neat and authentic western appearance while working.
Compensation includes a monthly salary, share of pooled tips, shared housing, and all meals on ranch.
The successful applicants will be outgoing, gracious, and highly guest oriented. Candidates should demonstrate an interest in ranching, conservation, and people.
Wranglers must be lifetime riders—english or western—who can demonstrate safe, effective horsemanship. Experience teaching beginner riders, or handling livestock is a plus.
Previous experience or a demonstrated interest in natural science and environmental education is desirable, though a love of nature and desire to learn is just as valuable.
Due to the nature of the operation, all ranch employees must be willing to work long, hard hours, and pitch in where needed.
Wranglers must be extremely safety conscious, and able to think on their feet at all times. You must have a sense of practicality and be able to see things that need to be done without being told what to do 100% of the time.
A valid drivers license is required.
They’d also like to hear about any other skills you may have—leatherwork, mechanics, roping, birding, etc– that may enhance the guest experience.
For more information, please visit our website– zranch.org.
To apply, please send a photo, resume, and a cover letter detailing why you want to work for Zapata Ranch to firstname.lastname@example.org Please include an essay in your own words, minimum of two paragraphs, describing what is important to you in living your life.