Saguaro Lake Guest Ranch was built in 1927 during the construction of Stewart Mountain Dam to host workers during the build. The Stewart Mountain Dam is the last of a long chain of dams and resevoirs that control irrigation to the Phoenix Valley. Around 1930, once the dam was complete, a couple from Kansas purchased the land to be turned into a public use area.
Some of the first public services offered were fishing, hosted by a marina built on the east side of the dam, and more than 20 horseback trails built throughout the Goldfield Mountains and around Bulldog Cliffs. Today, many people still visit the ranch for a quiet transition from busy city life. It is a great place to enjoy a variety of outdoor activities, such as horseback riding, kayaking, tubing, fishing, and swimming in the ranch's pool. The winter months offer wonderful weather for hiking, mountain biking, and porch sitting; while the spring and fall offer more water activities.
The location of the ranch is so iconic that several movies between 1997 and 2004 were filmed there; films such as "The Ride," "Arizona Summer," and "Skinwalkers" feature the red rock cliffs and surrounding desert of Saguaro Lake Ranch. Bulldog Cliffs beckon to visitors, tempting visitors for an evening horseback ride or hike.
There are 20 ranchette style cabins of various sizes and with various amenities. Some are closer to the dining hall and swimming area, while others lay down by the Salt River. From any of these cabins you can sit on your porch for some spectacular bird watching! Dozens of species of birds will peak out to say hello without much of a wait. Take a walk down to the river, just below the dam, to see several species of waterfowl all enjoying a nice bath together.
Still not convinced? Give them a call to ask questions or discuss reservations and availability! The front desk assistants at the ranch are happy to help you plan your next visit. They offer information on lodging, outdoor activities, and history of the area. Once you arrive, be sure to stop by the beautiful gift shop to bring a piece of the place home with you.