By Liesl Brander, Chicago Tribune
You’ll want wild horses to drag you away to the Old West at the luxurious yet rugged Mustang Monument Wild Horse Eco-Resort set in the wilderness of Wells, Nev.
Here you can spot mustangs running free on 900 square miles thanks to activist and philanthropist Madeleine Pickens, ex-wife of Oklahoma oilman T. Boone Pickens. She opened the resort and horse sanctuary, nestled between the Ruby and Spruce mountains, in June.
The resort is about 180 miles west of Salt Lake City.
Pickens' vision: to let guests experience Native American and cowboy traditions while gazing at wild mustangs in their natural habitat — without sacrificing amenities and accommodations.
Go glamping in style in one of 10 hand-painted tepees for $1,000 a night (double occupancy). The 300 square feet of living space is furnished with plush leather chairs, down pillows, hardwood floors and custom-made king-size beds. Outdoor bathrooms provide a still-roughing-it element (flashlight included).
For $1,500 a night, you can upgrade to a plush safari cottage, designed with a mix of cowboy chic and modern decor. The open floor plan offers a roomy en suite bathroom, sitting area and a deck with a view of the great outdoors.
The rates include meals and select activities, and all proceeds go to the care and rehabilitation of the horses through Pickens’ nonprofit organization Saving America’s Mustangs.
Since 2010, the thoroughbred racehorse owner and breeder has rescued 650 wild mustangs from slaughter.
Visitors from around the world have already had the opportunity to see and feed the mustangs in their natural surroundings on horseback, walking tours or safari-style rides.
Horse-drawn wagon trips, roping and archery lessons, guided historic hikes and authentic Native American beading and moccasin classes are among the activities offered.
After a day on the range, you can relax with a spa treatment in the Wellness Tipi, dine under the stars or try your luck in the Saloon.
Best put a giddyup in your step; the season at Mustang Monument ends Sept. 30.