UTAH'S DIXIE HISTORICAL SITES
Where is it ?
GPS DATA: Bar Ten Ranch 36 16.472N 113 13.989W 4251 ft Elevation
In St. George, head South on River Road and turn South and drive pass the Block Plant (Start Road Mileage) to the Arizona State Line (36" 59.974N 113" 34.322W) and continue south. Turn South at the Seegmiller Mountain Junction (36' 49.604N 113' 33.668 W 25 Miles ). Stay on main road to the Black Rock Junction (36' 44.886N 113' 32.812W 31.6 Miles). Do not turn, but continue to head South to the Mt. Trumbull Schoolhouse 36' 24.725N 113 19.536W 61.1 Miles Continue South to Bar Ten Ranch 74.2 Miles
Bar Ten The flower of the Arizona Strip
Tony & Ruby, the original owners of the Bar 10 ranch, have four boys and two girls who have been directly involved in cattle ranching and building the ranch over the past thirty-plus years. They are all married and doing their part to produce more Bar 10 cowboys and cowgirls!
Today, two of their sons, Kelly and Gavin, work full time in the Bar 10 business, preserving the Bar 10 heritage for future generations.
The Heaton family has been ranching on the Arizona Strip for five generations. Tony and Ruby, bought up small ranches on the Arizona Strip, and ultimately ended up with a little over 10, 000 deeded acres and 100,000 BLM acres. As was common in these isolated expanses, access to the ranch house was simplified by adding an airstrip to the property. Coincidentally, about this same time tourists began running the Colorado River in rubber rafts. Soon, many hundreds of people were cruising down the river through the Grand Canyon, just down-wash from the Bar 10.
In the early 1970's, cattle prices fell, interest rates soared, and Tony soon found himself in a bind. As a solution to his problems, he turned to the river. By the time river rafters got to a point near his Bar 10 Ranch, they had already been on the river for seven days, the length of time most people budget for a vacation, and near a persons maximum endurance level for the cold water, hot sun, and primitive camping conditions of a Colorado River raft trip.
Tony figured out how rafters could use his airstrip to catch flights back to Las Vegas. He quickly organized teams of mules , and he and his four young sons were soon bringing wet, sunburned, awestruck tourists up from the river to his ranch. The journey took one hour by mule to the rim from the inner canyon, and another hour in an old converted school bus to the airstrip where waiting planes would ferry them to Las Vegas.
Relieved of their passengers, the large empty rafts would have to continue down through the remainder of the Grand Canyon to Lake Mead. It wasn’t long before Tony saw an opportunity there too. He worked with the tour operators to restock the boats with a fresh batch of rafters, flown into his ranch.
Before long, the dirt airstrip was being used almost daily to fly river guests in and out of the river . That first year in the mid 1970's, the Heaton’s efforts ferried just 125 people, but by 1983 they were seeing 1,000 people per summer.
At that point, the family decided to build a lodge to expand the experience for the river runners. Tony and Ruby transported all the lumber, brick, windows, and other materials over the eight miles of dirt road in a cattle truck. Their six young children labored alongside Mom and Dad with never ending enthusiasm, commitment, and energy.
Later they added Conestoga Wagons to provide additional, private sleeping, and were pleasantly surprised by their comfort and popularity with guests. In 1985, the Heatons set aside the mules in favor of helicopters and quickly saw the numbers of visitors to the Bar 10 Ranch increase to 6,000 per season. Today the river traffic is upwards of 12,000 visitors from May 1st to October 15th.
Today there is plenty to see and do. Guests are treated to country-style buffet meals, and evening entertainment that "brings the West alive." A variety of ranch activities and horseback riding is available, and tours may include guided ATV rides. The Bar 10 is still a working cattle ranch, so visitors can get a taste of that life as well, with demonstrations of real ranching operations such as branding and roping. The Bar 10 Trading Post sells supplies, books, gifts, snacks, T-shirts and other unique souvenirs.
Lest you worry that the ranch is too commercial, it should be noted that the Heaton’s family’s philosophy is to uplift and inspire their guests, by preserving the pristine feeling of remoteness and seclusion from the everyday world. Mission Statement (link) They are resolute about preserving the area and its rich history, and are as averse to over-development and exploitation as anyone. The Heaton family has grown up with this land for generations, and I doubt you will find anyone with more love and respect for it than they have." (Mark Swint, SW Aviator, Feb-Mar 2001.)
BAR 10 RANCH
It is our purpose to provide a
Unique Western Ranch Experience
in a Safe Atmosphere of
Genuine Western Hospitality.
All agendas, activities, and experiences are planned and presented
so as to uplift and inspire our guests in the following ways:
•PRESERVE THE PRISTINE FEELING
OF REMOTENESS AND SECLUSION FROM THE EVERYDAY WORLD.
•ENJOY THE UNIQUE BEAUTIES OF THIS MAJESTIC AREA..
•FEEL AT ONE WITH NATURE AND AT PEACE WITH SELF.
•SENSE -- THROUGH THE GENUINE CARE AND CONCERN OF THE BAR 10 CREW--
THAT EACH GUEST IS AN INTEGRAL PART OF THE "BAR 10 FAMILY."
31 March, 2006