Youth Programs

As a working, historic cattle ranch the MacGregor property has the unique advantage to offer a wide array of educational opportunities to our community and visitors.  The goal of these activities is to teach children about Colorado history and homesteading, while also instilling in them the importance of land stewardship.

Field Trips

There are many educational options for schools and youth groups visiting the Ranch, which can be customized to fit any curriculum. Below you can read about the activities offered for visiting groups. Please allow 45 minutes to complete each activity listed below when scheduling your field trip to the Ranch.

Museum Tours

The Museum Tour includes a guided tour of one of the original ranch houses full of personal memorabilia and artifacts belonging to the MacGregor's. This tour focuses on homesteading and the importance it played in United States history by telling the story of three generations of the MacGregor's spanning over a hundred years.  

Barn Tours

The Barn Tour is a walking tour through historic agricultural buildings. Stations have educational panels, exhibits and interactive components to make early 1900's ranch life come alive. The tour allows children to experience what ranch life was like for the MacGregor's, and to understand how food was produced and stored before modern machinery and refrigeration. 

The Eagle Trail

Starting in the museum parking lot, the Eagle Trail is a half mile nature walk up to the original homestead house and nature center. There are several stops along the way which highlight certain events and happenings in nature, giving the students an opportunity to investigate and discover nature’s interesting creations. At the end of the tail the students have a chance to explore the nature center which displays variety of mammals, birds and insects found on the ranch. The nature center also has interactive displays to learn interesting and fun facts about the wildlife that make their home in the Rocky Mountains.

Wagon Rides

Wagon rides are usually available for youth groups visiting the ranch depending on time of year and weather. The wagon ride takes students through the hay meadow as a guide discusses the haying and irrigating process. The children will also learn facts about the ranch and the wildlife that live here through a fun, interactive game.

Heritage Camp

Each summer, the MacGregor Ranch hosts a history based day camp for children having just completed 3rd through 5th grades. This hands on camp offers educational activities in areas such as homesteading,   ranching   and   historic   agriculture,  and  local   and

regional history. It is held at the AQ house, the original homestead on the Ranch.

Visit our Heritage Camp page for registration information.

Camping on the Ranch

The Ranch offers a dedicated camping area for scout groups and other youth groups to use free of charge. Youth groups camping on the ranch have the opportunity to tour the museum and barns, hike the Aspen Trail which leaves from the camping area or the many trails that leave from the Lumpy Ridge trailhead, or hold group activities at the campsite. The campsite provides a great place for groups to host leadership training or to teach youth about the many essentials of wilderness survival and No Trace camping principles.   

  • Campsites and campfire areas are generally available 7 days a week, Feb - Sept, with advance reservations.

  • Youth must outnumber the adult chaperones on all trips.

  • The campsites exist for use by youth groups whose purpose is to teach outdoor education activities and camping skills.

  • The sites may not be used by any group whose primary activities are offered off site from the Ranch.

  • Group Leaders must speak with a staff member concerning rules and regulations before their event.

  • Any misuse of the sites or other problem by the group will result in loss of future privileges on the ranch.

South Side Camp Site and Shelter
  • Maximum Group Size: 50

  • 25 markered campsites 

  • Low impact camping only

  • A fire ring is provided and the only place you may have a fire. Please check to make sure we are not on high fire danger alert to clarify if camp fires are permitted at the time of your event.

  • Designated Parking lot at site

  • Must arrange with Waste Management to have a Port-O-Pot brought out for your stay.

Please familiarize yourself with camp area rules before visiting.

Camping on the Ranch

Other areas of the Ranch may be opened occasionally for other outdoor education activities by youth education organizations. Advance reservations and approval of program content must be obtained prior to the event. Here are some activity ideas that previous youth group organizations have conducted on the Ranch:

Service Projects ~Eagle Scout projects ~Explorer Scout Program ~ Nature and wildlife activities ~ Day use ~ Stream studies ~ Conservation activities ~ Geology and botany studies ~ Orienteering~ Archaeology ~Scout Camporees ~ Flag retirements ~ Campouts ~ Day camps. or bring your own ideas!

For information about our programs you may email us!