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Leave from: Dallas
The jaunt: Some of the Lone Star State's best ranches are so remote you have to fly there. Good thing the Rough Creek Lodge is just an hour and a half (i.e., less than one tank of gas) from the DallasFort Worth area. The 11,000-acre resort has activities at every riding level, from lessons and gentle trail rides for greenhorns to advanced skills training and trots through the Texas Hill Country. Off the saddle, there's fly-fishing, croquet, clay shooting, and archery. (To satisfy the cowboy-size appetite you'll work up, Rough Creek's award-winning restaurant prepares filling dishes like grilled Texas quail, tea-smoked Moulard duck breast, and brown-butter plum tarts.) With a 650-foot zip line and rocket-building classes, you can almost think of this as a learning vacation on alternative forms of transportation. Because until scientists figure out how to run cars off of hay, the trusty steed might once again become the preferred way to travel.
Your chariot: You're on your own getting up thereRough Creek is an 80-mile drive southwest of Dallasbut once you're there, it's all hoof power.
Check into: The 7,000-square-foot, eight-bedroom Owner's Retreat guesthouse, which sits on the private Chalk Mountain Lake and has enough space for your entire herd
Rough Creek Lodge
Tel: 800 864 4705
Doubles from $249 per person, including breakfast and dinner. Owner's Retreat is $2,500 per night.