Jun 13, 2015

Saguaro Cactus

I'm always asking the guests I ride with how much they know about the alien looking Saguaro cactus. And the answer is often "nothing" which I think is sad because they are a wonderful, interesting plant.

Their Latin name is Carnegiea Gigantica.

Their average life span is 150-175 years.

They typically grow between seal level and 4000 feet in the areas of the Sonoran Desert where freezing temperatures are minimal.

They are very slow growing - only about 1 -1.5 inches in the first 8 years of their life. They begin growing under what is know as a "nurse tree" (Ironwoods, Palo Verdes, Mesquites).
Branches/Arms do not begin to grow on a Saguaro until it is 50-75 years old. this does, however, depend on the amount of water the Saguaro is receiving.

The roots of a Saguaro are very shallow to allow it to absorb as much water as possible. After a period of rain the Saguaro will expand and look fatter - the pleats that make up its body store the water and swell. After a dry spell the Saguaro will look thinner having used up a lot of its water stores.

Sometimes there are holes in the Saguaros typically created by the Gila Woodpecker. When the Woodpecker moves out of its nest hole other birds such as Sparrows and Elf Owls will move in. Larger birds such as Harris Hawks and Red Tails will build their nests on the outside when the arm meets the trunk of the Saguaro.

We think they are amazing.

Sep 19, 2014

Hello, my name is Yankee.

Hello, my name is Yankee. I have lived at White Stallion Ranch for 15 years and I am nearly 30 years old.
I worked very hard for the ranch carrying guests for many years which is a job that I really enjoyed, especially towards the end of my career when I carried kids. My favorite past-time was team penning with a kid on my back. I could run so fast down the arena and when I chased the cows I felt like I was a professional rodeo horse! 
Now I am retired and the ranch said that because I worked so hard and was loved by so many people I could spend the rest of my life here with my best friend Bronco just eating and hanging out with the herd. Sometimes people look at me and say that because I am skinny I must be unhealthy or neglected. I am not. I have more food than I can finish and a superb health plan that is probably better than a lot of people in America. The summer months are a little hard on me because I have to burn a lot of calories to stay cool. But I am not unhappy. The wranglers regularly scratch me and Gry the herd manager chats with me every day about what I want for my second breakfast as I have been known to be picky about my grain. Anyway, I plan on enjoying my retirement until my time to go to greener pastures comes, but until then I wanted to say hi to everybody and remind you all to always have cookies in your pockets incase our trails meet.

Mar 4, 2014

Hay hay hay!

Sometimes I get asked... "How much hay can you fit in the barn?"

Approximately 407 tonnes. Is the answer Steven, Gry and I worked it out the other day.

The following question normally is... "What does a bale cost?" 

We don't buy by the bale, we buy by the ton so $285.00 per ton.

This led us to figure out a few other things...

Here are a few stats on our hay consumption (well our horses hay consumption).

407 Tons of hay goes in the barn,
815,200 lbs of hay,
1 bale is about 100lbs,
8152 bales of hay in the barn.

76 bales of hay can be moved by a "squeeze" machine in one stack,
8 of these stacks fits on one semi-truck,
14 trucks fill our barn.

We have 150 horses,
We feed 1 1/2 tons of hay a day,
547 1/2 tons of hay are fed a year,
The full barn lasts 266 days.

Last time we bought hay we paid $285.00 per ton,
That's $427.50 spent on hay we feed a day,
We spend approx $156,037.00 per year on hay.

We feed a lot of mouths.

Feb 27, 2014

Ladies week

Our second Cactus Cowgirls ladies week of 2014 has come to a close. And what a lot of fun we had. We'd like to give a big thanks to Carol Moore and Carol Bachmann for running the program and taking wonderful care of the girls. 

This trip, as well as the riding program, the girls had Yoga classes with Denise and Pilates classes with Pam (both veteran cowgirls), plus a guided hike at Sanctuary Cove that ended with a group labyrinth reflection walk. We must not, however, forget the highlight, the trip to La Fiesta de los Vaqueros. Otherwise known as the Tucson Rodeo. Cowboys, broncs and bulls! 

Thanks again ladies for visiting us and we hope to see you all again next year!

Nov 15, 2013

Doggies Doggies everywhere.

In the next few series of blogs I'm going to talk about the dogs of White Stallion Ranch.

Ill start with the most recent... Noche.

Laura found Noche at a rescue who had set up camp in a pet store. She is a year and a half, 13lbs, and some sort of terrier mix. She has blended into the household nicely and has only had 4 escape attempts.
Her story in brief is that she was bought as a puppy for a lady by her boyfriend. When they broke up the boyfriend kept calling the lady threatening to kill the dog. The lady was so afraid that she gave the dog to the rescue. They had her for 4 months because no body wanted her (we have no idea why) and then Laura fell in love with that face. 

Noche is very friendly and loves attention.

Apr 9, 2013

Always exciting times

It has been a while since this blog went out. And this is just a quick update one some of the happenings here at the ranch. We had a fabulous Easter, lots of guests, new and repeat, lots of fun. Michael and Kristin have adopted a new dog. His name is Ned and he is a part lab, part Shepard all the way from Kuwait. At 5 years old Ned spent nearly all of his life in a kennel. His mother was a U.S. military service dog who was denied the right to come home because she was pregnant by another service dog. shortly after Ned was born his mother died unexpectedly and he was the sole survivor of the litter. Ned was hand raised by a facility in Kuwait but they could not get him adopted out because traditionally Kuwaitis do not adopt large dogs (Ned weighs in at 75lbs). After a long journey home with flight delays and weather he made into the ranch with his handler for the journey, Phil. Phil spent about 4 days with us and Ned helping him adjust to all the sights and sounds of the ranch which we can imagine must have been pretty overwhelming for him at first. Now Phil has gone and Ned is home with all of M+K's other dogs and is settling in well.

Kristin has also found the horse she has always wanted... A Norwegian Fjord horse. A gelding named Lasse and he is from New Hampshire

Oct 8, 2012

New look dining room

What we now know as White Stallion Ranch began its life in 1900 as a cattle ranch. Today's main dining room and kitchen were once the main/ only ranch house.

In 1940 when the Zimmerman's first turned the ranch into a Guest Ranch the main building became a dining room and kitchen plus one guest room. The rooms that we now call the Sunrise and Sunset dining rooms were where Max and his wife lived. Then they later became guest rooms and in the past 15 years they have changed functions from being a gift shop, business office, and now dining rooms.


In 1965 the Trues bought the ranch and took out the first guest room to make more dining space.

The main dining room was the first major renovation the Trues ever did and the space has been virtually untouched since.



Oddly enough the dining room has been given an older look. The walls are darker, the ceiling is now Saguaro Ribs each one individually put up, brickwork has been removed in favour of an archway that is more consistent of the building's structure. The window in the west side of the building is gone and been replaced by a niche with a bronze. And the smaller archway to the buffethas gone to make room for another table.

The Sunset and Sunrise rooms have also been given a makeover.

We love the new look and hope you will come and enjoy it with us!