Blue Lake Ranch; A secluded gem outside Durango
When you first enter the Blue Lake Ranch, it’s hard to know what to expect…there are no large monument signs or visual structures to lead your eye. As you follow the signs, making your way up a meandering hill, you come across the “Ranch House,” which is the focal point of the property. Even as you park your car you may feel as though this B&B is a bit unassuming, but that’s only because the lush vegetation briefly hinders the beauty from your visual receptors.
As you enter the Ranch House, you’re warmly greeted by the splendor of the space and the majestic views of Blue Lake. The property around the Ranch House is beautifully landscaped with a variety of trees, plants and colorful blooms to delight the senses. The patio (overlooking Blue Lake) is furnished with a number of seating areas for enjoying your morning breakfast on a nice summer day, or perhaps to do some stargazing on a moonless night.
While the Ranch House serves as the focal point for activity, it’s also home to three rooms, including the Lake View Suite, where we stayed our first night. The accommodations were very well-appointed and spacious with a king-sized bed, beautiful old-world style woodwork and cabinetry, with a lavish bathroom that included a whirlpool tub. There was plenty of room for luggage and relaxing. The deck overlooking the lake, while watching the sunset beyond…was especially enjoyable.
Blue Lake Ranch encompasses over 200 acres and has a number of structures that provide diverse accommodations. There is the Spring House that has two bedrooms and two bathrooms, with a large living area. The expansive deck provides views of a small pond and snow-capped mountains in the distance, which is perfect for two couples wanting to share a vacation.
Then, there is the secluded lake-side cabin with three bedrooms and three bathrooms and two real-wood burning fireplaces…which is perfect for families, or, a spacious romantic get-away. Speaking of romance…all the accommodations are fit for romance, however the “Cottage in the woods” might be a top choice if it’s available. Whatever your accommodation requirements, the Blue Lake Ranch can probably fill it. They even have an event center where you can get married, hold a corporate retreat or perhaps host a family reunion or other special event.
The Ranch has grown a lot since its modest beginnings. The property was purchased over thirty five years ago by David Alford and was originally a Norwegian homestead. When David purchased the property there was but a single structure and it took a decade before he was ready to open for business. Now the Ranch can host up to 60 guests.
There are trails throughout the property so that you can explore its many wondrous features. There are a number of places to sit and take-in the boundless beauty—whether it be lakeside, in the garden, by the river or by a water feature. The lake is stocked with trout, so if you’re interested in trying your hand at some fishin’ you can do that too (note: catch and release).
Blue Lake Ranch Bed and Breakfast is really a place where you can truly relax and rejuvenate. I typically like to explore the area in which I’m staying, but I felt bound to the Ranch with its gravitational pull toward nature. Our walks through the property yielded wildlife sightings like deer, geese, elk and a number of birds. There are so many colors and textures throughout the property that each time you pass by the same location, you often discover something new that attracts your attention.
In your minds-eye I’ve described the sense of sight, sound, touch and smell…the only left remaining, is taste—that too will delight. Served buffet style, breakfast at the Blue Lake Ranch is hearty and delicious. From fresh ground coffee to whole wheat pancakes with pine nuts (note: real maple syrup would have made it perfect), to eggs with garden fresh asparagus and ham, fresh fruit, to homemade apple pie, granola and too many other things to list. That was just one morning.
It’s hard to find anything wrong with this Durango Bed and Breakfast…especially at this level of quality accommodations…even the rates are very reasonable. I should also add that the staff is amazingly friendly and hospitable.
If you’ve ever stayed at the Blue Lake Ranch, please share your experience with my readers and me by leaving a comment below.