|Minimum Stay||4 nights|
Come unwind at our family's private 20-acre Starlight Ranch, the ideal Southern Utah vacation home for your family or group of up to 6 people! We're out away from the stress and sounds of city life, but close enough that you still feel connected and can easily access all the incredible sights of the region from one central location.
* Our ranch home is perfectly situated in the middle of Southern Utah's best attractions. It's less than an hour from here to the gates of Zion and Bryce on back roads; 1.5 hours to some of Escalante's best slot canyons and hikes; and only 2 hours from the Grand Canyon's North Rim and Paria (the Wave area).
* You'll be immersed in the beautiful, rugged alpine/high desert landscape that Utah is famous for. On the drive to our ranch, pay careful attention and you'll see breathtaking red-rock sandstone canyons; farms growing seasonal crops; carvings of pioneers etched onto the sides of stone cliffs; the old "Gunsmoke" set; and probably several different kinds of local wildlife too (deer, eagles, rabbits, fox, snakes, mice, etc). We intentionally bought property 'off-grid' to have a cabin getaway free of the sounds and stress of civilization, so we about 40 miles away from the nearest town, 15 of which is down a graded dirt road. But we are still able to enjoy lots of the "creature comforts" that we're all accustomed to by harnessing our own solar energy, which allows us to make our own electricity and to pump naturally-filtered water out of our deep artesian well. It's not fancy, but then again, it's not intended to be! Rather, it's an authentic country cabin retreat, furnished for leisurely comfort and quality time spent together.
* All of that said, we do also have some awesome extras to make your cabin feel like a "real house." Your cabin will also have gas appliances, satellite TV, and Wifi internet provided throughout your stay. (However, please do keep in mind that we may occasionally experience outages or slower Wifi service than you are accustomed to - please plan accordingly!).
* For year-round use indoors, the cabin's cast-iron wood-burning stove provides a wonderful aroma, warmth, and cozy ambiance.
* In the evenings, you can roast marshmallows, cook dutch-oven on the outdoor fire pit, or enjoy the propane grill** as you gaze at the millions of stars arrayed above you. (Yes, they really are still there!) [**Note: if you plan to grill much outside, you may want to bring your own propane canister, or let us know and we will have canisters on hand for you to use.]
* We even offer free use of our telescope for stargazing if you are able/interested!
* Our ranch is nestled in a glen beneath a beautiful butte (we call it "the Redhead") and its ridges. So you can walk right out your front door and explore these areas for hours... perfect for day hikes and rock hunting.
* The cabin's kitchen has a full size gas refrigerator and stove, double sink, coffeemaker, and all the dishes, cookware, cups, basic spices, and utensils you'll need for your stay.
* The bathroom is appointed with fresh towels for your shower or bath, and you'll also have a full-size clothes washer and detergent in your cabin. (No dryer due to electricity draw, so Mother Nature and a clothes line will quickly dry your clothes for you!)
* While this cabin has one bathroom, another full bathroom with shower "may" be available for a nominal charge. Just ask.
* Your cabin has wood flooring with rugs, thick aspen paneling throughout, knotted-pine furniture in the living room and master bedroom, many authentic Southwestern furnishings, and Art's breathtaking photography of local sites and landmarks throughout.
* Four bedrooms: Master has two queen beds; BR2 has a queen; BR3 has a single; BR4 has a double futon. More accommodations may be available for a nominal fee, just ask.
* All linens, towels, cookware, dishes, etc. are provided for your enjoyment during your stay.
* We may have other outdoor or sporting equipment as needed and are happy to provide sightseeing help or advice--ask for specifics re: details, pricing, and availability.
* Starlight Ranch is also in a prime locale for the local fall hunting seasons.
* We look forward to sharing our home-away-from-home with you and your group or family.
Art and Sharon live in Texas with their young son and teenage daughters. Having both retired--Art from law enforcement and Sharon from an airline that offers flight benefits to retirees!--they bought this property as a vacation home for the whole family to enjoy together. We chose a ranch in southern Utah due to Art's longstanding spiritual connection to the area, and Sharon's memories of exploring the untamed wilderness on her family's ranch as a child. Since this was a large investment for them, they put a lot of their own labor and time into fixing it updozens to let this amazing property sit unused so much, they decided to make it available to an increasingly larger circle of family and friends. Finally, based on the strong encouragement of these folks, they decided to share it with a wider audience through VRBO starting in Spring, 2015. It's become very successful already, adding a supplemental income stream for us as retirees. Truly, though, the very best benefit for Art and Sharon is the joy of sharing our place with a whole new group of people, so they too can create their own wonderful memories now during their stay at Starlight Ranch!
Sharon and Art purchased this cabin in 2009
We bought this particular ranch in 2009 when a longtime acquaintance became unable to care for its upkeep and needed to sell to acquire a new living arrangement. It was actually in a horrible state of disrepair, but Art could see its potential as an awesome vacation property for our family with some serious elbow grease and TLC. So we spent several years and tens of thousands of dollars giving it that extreme level of care:
- cleaning up trash that had accumulated across the property over the years;
- trimming dozens of trees and clearing out brush, ground cover, and fire hazards;
- fixing roof leaks and creating covered storage areas inside and outside the two houses on the property;
- installing gates and safety/security equipment;
- laying road base on property's access road and property's driveway with volcanic ash to enable year-round access;
- pouring several layers of red rock throughout property's driveways for more solid year-round traction and also appearance;
- hauling off literally tons and tons of unusable materials, broken equipment, and metal and chemicals for special disposal;
- repairing and remodeling the two houses--wiring, plumbing, floors, fixtures, holes, appliances, counters, ceilings, paneling, outside paneling/trim, decks, fire pits, stone; on main house, also transformed enclosed entrance into guest bedroom and enclosed patio into master bedroom; and added air conditioning, on-demand water heater, R/O system.... Etc, etc!!!!
The process of improvement and beautification continues and always will, but now it is easy to see that Art's original vision for the property has finally become a reality! We now have a beautiful ranch with two very comfortable and enjoyable dwellings, one for our family, and one which we are now delighted to offer for other families' use year-round.
Our entire family loves the rugged beauty of the entire southern Utah / northern Arizona area. Our family's favorite activities are hiking, exploring, photography, fishing, riding ATVs, and looking for rocks and wildlife and such. Our property is perfectly located as a vacation home for us to do all of that. It's far enough from any city so we can unwind in total peace and silence, but close enough to access on a regular basis. It's also special for this area because it's accessible year-round, which is tough to find in the mountainous desert southwest at an elevation of around 7,000 feet!
Art and Sharon are an amazing couple. Art took us on an adventure of a lifetime. He is very knowledgeable on the area and was awesome with our daughters who are 10 and 14. We had plans when we got to the starlight ranch, Bryce, Zion, and the Grand Canyon (standard stuff). We ended up doing completely different excursions with Art and I'm so thankful we let loose and followed Art's lead. The area is so gorgeous we decided to buy a place of our own there near Art and Sharon. We can't wait to get out there again!
I really don't know where to start.... the trip was awesome...
The home is on the dirt road which was we were looking for and enjoying...
The home has pretty much all the things we were looking for...
Sharon and Art were so accommodate because it was our last minute decision to visit Utah.
We had no idea where to visit when we get there because our last minute decision ....
The owner, Art, stay not too far from our cabin. Art and grandson took us to the wonderful pink formation
through the gravel/dirt road to the top of the pink formation area... it was breath taking view of the formation
itself as well as the wonderful view of the area... It I can stay there and not leave..., it will be my dream...that is
how beautiful the view was.
Art showed us some pictures and told us where to visit.... I wish we had more time to stay there and visit all the
places where Art told us.
The view from the cabin is great as well..... it is a little remote from the city... but the drive just great ...
Night time... was dark .... but you can see the stars and moon so clear and so close... wish I had ladder which
I can just climb up to get the star from the sky....
It is wonderful experiences for us.... even the cabin is a little remote from the main road.
I will encourage people to stay there ... if you love adventures.
Beautiful property. Comfortable stay with plenty of room for 10 of us. Sharon and Art were wonderful hosts who helped us as we explored southern Utah. We loved hiking out the back door and the kids loved chasing lizards and watching hummingbirds. Art and Sharon were onsite just a few hundred yards away, but you would never know: very respectful of guests privacy.
Sharon and Art, Thank you to your family for sharing the house and knowledge of the beautiful land. We enjoyed the stay and the kids keep asking when we can return.
If a quiet off the beaten path cabin is what you are looking for, then this is the place for you. The accommodations were perfect for our family of four and the host Art couldn't have been more helpful. Due to his knowledge of the area, we were able to visit areas that aren't on any of our maps. We were able to take some wonderful photos that will forever remind us of our stay on the ranch. Unfortunately, we didn't spend as much time at the cabin to explore the immediate area as we would have liked, but with all the surrounding beauty, there was just so much to see in the time we had at the ranch. Thank you, Art, for sharing your knowledge and your cabin to make the first week of our vacation unforgettable. We hope you feel better soon!!!!!
There is no way to fully describe the AWESOME experiences my wife and I had over the course of our week at Starlight Ranch. The cabin proved to be the perfect base camp for two outdoor enthusiasts. All communication, response times and information received prior to beginning our journey were clear, timely and complete. Since this is a remote location, Art and Sharon did everything possible to ensure that we arrived at the ranch without any difficulty, and we did. Countless natural wonders stretch for hundreds of miles in every direction of the cabin. Thanks to Art's knowledge of, and passion for, this part of the country, we were able to experience them in ways that would have been impossible otherwise. We have never before encountered a more respectful and generous host and left the ranch with a new perspective on life, unable to fully describe to others the wonders we had seen. We consider ourselves extremely fortunate to have chosen Starlight Ranch as our home for our week long excursion. If you have an adventurous spirit and want to experience the parks in a way that very few have, there is no better choice. No doubt that we will be making the cabin our temporary home again in the near future.
One final note: a high clearance vehicle (preferably 4 wheel drive) is necessary to fully experience all that this area of Utah has to offer.
My husband and I booked this for our annual fall getaway, intending to visit nearby Bryce Canyon National Park as a side trip.
Sharon and Art are accommodating hosts. I dealt with Sharon by phone and email prior to our arrival. She was easy to get in touch with and gave quick answers to all of my questions.
Because of the remote location, we were a little wary of getting clear directions for the back roads, but they took us right up to the cabin door with no problem. As another reviewer stated, the drive in is like being in a national park. The first part is similar to the drive into Zion, and the as you get closer, you can see Bryce-like formations in the near distance.
The cabin setting itself is secluded, treed property. We were a little concerned that the description said that the owner would be nearby and would check in occasionally, but it was not a problem. Art is NOT intrusive! He just checks to see if guests have any needs. As described, the cabin is off the grid, but the solar, LP gas, water and satellite internet gave good, reliable service with no outages. The gas generator was used for just a few short periods as needed due to clouds, supplementing the solar panels. The wi-fi was fast and strong enough for posting pictures and Skyping with family members at home. There are lots of convenient plugs for power cords! Even with Verizon, there is no cell service, and OnStar wouldn’t work either. We did not used the large flat screen TV or watch any of the many available movies. (We spent our spare time enjoying the fire pit.) All of the necessities were provided throughout. (The additional shower mentioned in the description is in an adjacent cabin, not the owner’s residence.)
Travel to the national parks and monuments does require traversing maintained dirt roads of varying quality at least 50% of the way.
If Art offers to take you to the “back of Bryce,” do 2 things: TAKE him up on it and TAKE your camera! Its 3-4 hours well-spent and re-arranging your schedule for, if need be. There is also a variety of local maps, guides and directories on hand in the cabin to help with your planning.
We thoroughly enjoyed our time at Starlight Ranch and left with a little heartache at having to depart.
If applicable, ask about military, law enforcement, childhood cancer, and airline discounts.