|About the Book|
For over a century, dude ranchers have recognized that the wildness and splendor of the Rocky Mountain West were worth preserving. Dude ranchers were responsible for bringing many early travelers west, offering easterners a chance to learn aboutMoreFor over a century, dude ranchers have recognized that the wildness and splendor of the Rocky Mountain West were worth preserving. Dude ranchers were responsible for bringing many early travelers west, offering easterners a chance to learn about ranch life and find a friendly respite from urban bustle.In Dude Ranching, Lawrence Borne traces the history of dude ranching from the late nineteenth century to its boom in the 1920s, its troubles during the Great Depression and World War II, and the many changes since the war. Borne also gives an objective account of government policy toward national parks, noting the ironies of its damage to the dude ranching business.The story of dude ranching is uniquely American- it is about individualistic enterprise, about ranchers who, suffering from the declining price of cattle, found a way to maintain their ranches by taking in paying guests. It is also the story of recreational travel in the West, the growth of the tourist industry there, and ultimately the far-reaching effects of the automobile.Dude Ranching provides an interesting description of a group of individuals who helped open the west to tourists while maintaining its unspoiled beauty. This book is for anyone who has ever been attracted to the romance of cowboy life, and for anyone concerned about both the preservation and the continued accessibility of the Rocky Mountains. As Borne shows, the study of recreational travel habits can reveal a national character and, in this case, a general attitude toward the land.