Whitefish Montana Lodging, Dining and Official Visitor Information
 
  
  
  
  
 
Aerial adventure park at Whitefish Mountain Resort
Aerial adventure park at Whitefish Mountain Resort Photo © Lena Frandsen  <  || >
Whitefish lake Golf Course
Whitefish lake Golf Course Photo © Brian Schott  <  || >
Floating and fly-fishing on the wild and scenic Middle Fork of the Flathead River.
Floating and fly-fishing on the wild and scenic Middle Fork of the Flathead River. Photo © Brian Schott  <  || >
Bar W Guest Ranch on Spencer Lake
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3.5 Miles West of Whitefish

Welcome to the Bar W Guest Ranch on Spencer Lake. We are open year-round and ready to treat you with true Western hospitality - from the moment you arrive to long after you depart.

 
This is a view of the ranch from the back pasture of the Bar W.
Scenery of Spencer Lake
Horses with Bar W Lodge
Two Riders with Mountains in Background
Bar W Meadow Cabin
Meadow Cabin
Winter at the Bar W
Lodge Fire Place
Bar W Ranch on Spencer Lake
Bar W Video
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More About this Business

Located on Spencer Lake, there are 3,000 acres available for horseback riding and all kinds of outdoor activities. Almost all of our guests, including families, adults, singles and groups alike, have a tendency to think they are miles away from civilization here. But just 3.5 miles down the road from this serene wilderness is the vibrant resort town of Whitefish, offering up the finest in shopping, dining, theater, and nightlife.

The Bar W is nestled at the base of Spencer Mountain, between two pine-covered ridges. The ranch consists of a 6,200-square-foot lodge, guest cabins (on the way), indoor and outdoor horseback-riding arenas, stables, a barn, an entertainment area, and a gazebo on the lake; all helping to make the Bar W an idyllic piece of paradise for our guests to soak in all year long.

Our horseback-riding program is the ranch's main attraction. Our experienced staff, trained horses, and the assorted terrain our guests traverse make for an incredible riding experience. The Bar W's riding programs include hundreds of thousands of acres to explore. You'll ride in the mountains, over the foothills, and across the open prairies of Big Sky country.

You can also enjoy the riding events that take place in our indoor and outdoor arenas, such as horsemanship clinics, barrel racing, egg races, pole bending, and more. We offer cowpoke lessons for beginners, and for those more experienced cowboys and cowgirls, advanced lessons that include roping, team penning, and sorting cattle.

And wait until you sit down to breakfast or dinner and taste some of the best down-home cooking this side of the Mississippi - Montana style! Meals are prepared with love and care and are always served in hearty portions; no one leaves hungry. Have a unique food requirement? Just let our cooks know and we'll accommodate your request.

In addition to horseback riding, there is plenty for all ages to do and discover at the Bar W. Guests are invited to explore the entire property - watch our trainers work the horses, help with the chores (if you like, of course), fish for big pike on Spencer Lake, hike the miles and miles of trails, mountain bike, swim in the lake, throw horseshoes, or play badminton, volleyball, or a leisurely game of pool. You can even test your archery skills or try your hand at breaking some clay pigeons.

In the winter months, you can still ride horseback through the trails or in our indoor arena, snowshoe or cross-country ski right out the back door, skate or ice fish on Spencer Lake, take a sleigh ride or have dinner at the gazebo right on the lake. With Big Mountain Ski and Summer Resort just 7 miles away, you are minutes from incredible skiing and snowboarding.

Or, you can just sit back, relax and observe the beauty of Montana's wildlife, such as whitetail and mule deer, moose, bears, eagles, coyotes, wolves and mountain lions.

And if all that is not enough, the Flathead Valley is a year-round playground for families, singles, and groups of all ages with whitewater rafting, stream and lake fishing, nine world-class golf courses, boating, hot air ballooning, skiing, back-country skiing, four other cross-country trail systems, snowmobiling, dog sledding, and more. Glacier National Park is 23 miles from the ranch, and the drive there is almost as pretty as the park itself (almost!).

Getting here is easy; it's leaving that's the hard part.

What the Media and Critics Are Saying

Winner of Trip Advisor's Award of Excellence 2013 & 2012

Some Guest Comments

"There has never been a vacation quite like this one. We will be coming back for sure. The staff was excellent! The food was great! The horses were beautiful! And there was always something to do. Thank you Bar W." -- Michelle and Steve, CT 2012


"Hello Montana! Staff is wonderful, food is excellent, glamping is great. Wake up every morning looking at beautiful scenery and horses-horses-horses and amusing little ground squirrels plus white tail deer in the evenings. We even got lucky catching trout in the pond. This all happened in the 1st and 2nd days. Words cannot describe our week at Bar W Guest Ranch. Thank you to all! We'll be back!" -- Charlie and Deb, MN 2012

"We've visited several guest ranches in Montana-Bar W is number one in my book. The staff is the best, the food is outstanding and the horses and other activities are top notch. Thanks for all the memories-You will see me again!" -- Carolyn, HI

"Second time to Bar W and honestly it was so good second time around. I always dreamed of being a cowgirl and Bar W does everything to make that dream a reality. I love the place, the horses, the people and the food. A real escape and a thrill!" -- Karen, UK


'We've always dreamed of doing a cattle drive and was disappointed I had to come alone, but though I came here alone, I met my friends here. I will never forget all the other guests who were as excited as me and instantly were my friends. No one could ask for a better staff who were the very best! Thanks for the memories." -- Nerina, NY

"We had a fantastic time at the Bar W and plan on coming back for the whole week next time. Ranchers were all so nice and training was top notch and fun at the same time. Camping was exactly what we hoped it would be-outdoors in style! Thanks to the Bar W staff and owners for a truly wonderful family vacation!"
-- Hahne Family, NC

Amenities
Average Priced
Full Breakfast Included
WiFi/Wireless
Restaurant On-Site
Courtesy Van
S*N*O*W* Bus Stops Nearby
Laundry On-Site
Daily Maid Service
Room Service
Pets Allowed
Hot tub
Meetings and Conferences
Great for Weddings
 
More Information
406-863-9099
866-828-2900 (toll-free)
406-863-9500 (fax)
OPEN:

May - October: Open for Summer 3 night or 6 night Dude Ranch Packages
Spring & Fall Specialty Weeks - including Cowgirl Up, Photography Week, Cattle Drives, & Adult Only
November - April: Bed & Breakfast Stays, Winter Packages (minimum 6 guests for packages)

DRIVING DIRECTIONS:

The Bar W Guest Ranch on Spencer Lake in Whitefish, Montana has it all. Western informality blended with elegance. Located in the midst of a year round playground, the Bar W is just 15 miles from Glacier Park International Airport, 23 miles from Glacier National Park, 7 miles from Whitefish Mountain Resort. Go left out of the airport on Highway 2, left on highway 40 to highway 93 North. When 93 takes the left turn in Whitefish, then drive 4.3 miles to get to the ranch.

Address:

2875 Highway 93 West, Whitefish, MT 59937

Location:
Latitude: 48.396585000
Longitude: -114.408231000
 
 
What's Nearby
Meeting or Group Facility
The Bar W Guest Ranch is a wonderful setting for a holiday party, BBQ dinner or a corporate...
 
Special or Package
Enjoy the magic of a sleigh drawn by gentle draft horses while snuggling up with blankets and...
Our trail rides are tailored to match everyone's needs while keeping both safety and fun in...
Join the Bar W for a Wagon Ride drawn by a team of well trained draft horses. Enjoy a fun and...
Whether you want to ski all day or half a day and ride half a day in the mountains (weather...
 
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