Cowboy up in luxe Western style at an exclusive working ranch in Big Sky country.
The Ranch at Rock Creek has completed its three-year expansion and now offers a mix of luxury log cabins, riverfront tents, and a granite lodge in the Big Sky state of Montana. The rugged 6,600-acre spread is located near historic Philipsburg, an hour’s drive south of Missoula, and it offers an authentic Western experience with service and amenities no cowboy ever dreamed of. It’s owner, Jim Manley, grew up in New Jersey watching Westerns on television and, after making his fortune, decided to buy a ranch for the use of friends and family. He told the realtors it had to have a river running through it, be off the highway and in a valley to conceal new developments and avoid the headaches that come with high altitudes.
He wanted to be near a picturesque mining town and a ski resort, on land that had no poisonous snakes or grizzlies, and with enough precipitation to make it inviting year-round. Locals warned him that no such combination existed, but he persisted for 20 years and finally found one that met all nine of his conditions. Realizing he should make it a guest ranch, he embarked on an ambitious program of improvements. The Ranch at Rock creek ain’t cheap, but everything is included in the suite price and a single service fee, and that brings locally sourced cuisine, fine wines, hiking or skiing in season, fly-fishing, sports shooting, jeep adventure tours and everything else you might imagine. The natural beauty of the landscape and the changing seasons comes free and, beyond the guest areas, it’s still a working ranch. So, if you ever thrilled to The Big Country or Shane, pack your bags and prepare to live out your fantasies as Manley has.
around the world.