About Lost Valley Ranch
Four-Diamond Luxury Meets Authentic Western Hospitality
Lost Valley Ranch invites you to experience our signature brand of Western Hospitality. The recipient of the prestigious AAA Four Diamond award for 38 consecutive years, we've been providing unforgettable Colorado guest ranch experiences for adventurers and families alike since 1961. Set against 26,000 acres of Pike National Forest, you'll experience the majestic Rocky Mountains like never before.
From our humble origins as a working cattle operation to our 23 deluxe Colorado cabins with fireplaces, cooked to order cowboy cuisine and an incredible variety of Colorado outdoor activities, Lost Valley continues the legacy of down-to-earth hospitality established by the Foster family for over 50 years.
Our all-inclusive Colorado dude ranch offers guests the opportunity to reconnect with the spirit of the Old West, complete with horseback riding, family-friendly activities and the exceptional service of our professional staff. Breathe in the fresh mountain air, hike through flowering meadows or simply relax with a fishing pole on Goose Creek—it's all here to enjoy at your own pace. At Lost Valley, our "Brand" is more than just a proud symbol of ownership that appears on our horses and cattle; it's a promise that our Ranch Family is dedicated to making your stay the best Colorado vacation you've ever had. Perhaps that's why so many of our guests return to the ranch year after year. And when your time with us does come to an end, we know your Lost Valley experience will remain a permanent "brand" in your memory and your heart.
The History of Lost Valley Ranch - A Colorado Dude Ranch
The story of Lost Valley Ranch begins in the late 1800s, just as the West was starting to stir the imaginations and ambitions of gold rush miners looking to make their fortunes on the frontier. Once the need to feed these miners became apparent, places like Lost Valley became necessary to help supply the demands for beef that increased with the number of people who populated the central mountains of Colorado. Right around 1878, an adventurous rancher named George Tarbell claimed ownership of Lost Valley by squatter's rights and established what would become a small working cattle ranch.
In the early 1890s, Jim Graham, an immigrant from Scotland and his wife Rhoda moved to Lost Valley, and by 1900, Jim had registered the reverse LVL and began buying 160-acre parcels from the state. Jim supplemented the family's cattle income by working the mines in winter and taking in guests during the summer that he would pick up from the train station on his two-seat wagon. Early guests of Lost Valley were treated to breakfast by Mrs. Graham before spending the afternoon fishing or enjoying a ride on the ranch's horses.
After Jim Graham passed away in 1934, Rhoda sold the ranch to Hugh Graham (no relation) from Denver, who embarked on an ambitious expansion program. In 1946, he built five cabins and began advertising 'Grahams Lost Valley Ranch' featuring modern accommodations, family-style meals, fishing and riding.
A new chapter in Lost Valley history began in 1961, when Bob and Marion Foster gave up years of business management to transform the ranch into a one-of-a-kind family destination with the staff and service to match. Big Bob, as he came to be known, and his son Bob Jr, spent the next four decades establishing Lost Valley Ranch as the premier working/guest ranch in Colorado. Today, Lost Valley Ranch finds itself in the hands of Tony Warnock and his family, who have continued the Fosters' legacy of providing AAA Four Diamond service, authentic western adventures and our special brand of Western Hospitality to every guest who walks through our gates.
The Hayman Fire
In June of 2002, the largest forest fire in Colorado history changed the landscape of Lost Valley Ranch for generations to come. Hundreds of firefighters fought the fast-moving fire, which spread across 138,114 acres, burned 133 homes, and forced the evacuation of 5,340 people. Smoke could be seen and smelled across the state. The fire was finally brought under control on July 18, 2002. The Hayman Fire had devastating impact, but from the ashes came new life.
We compiled a video of our memories from this day and are truly grateful that Lost Valley Ranch was able to recover from such a tragedy.