The Medano Zapata Ranch is home to

to one of the richest and most diverse 

wildlife populations in North America  


he Medano Zapata Ranch spans 103,000 acres in Colorado’s San Luis Valley at the base of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains and Great Sand Dunes National Park. At the foot of North America’s tallest sand dunes, sharing borders with the National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management, Fish and Wildlife Service, and State of Colorado, Ranchlands has molded a business aimed at increasing the land’s biodiversity and preserving the natural ecosystem.

In earlier times, the land served as a prehistoric mammoth hunting ground and a campsite for Zebulon Pike. In the 19th century, the ranch played a central role in the valley’s range war between American and Mexican ranchers. Today, the “MZ” serves as a working bison and cattle ranch owned by The Nature Conservancy and managed by Ranchlands. The highlight of the ranch is a 2,000 head herd of bison, which roam freely year-round in a single 50,000 acre pasture. The ranch also runs a commercial cattle herd and high-end working guest ranch experience.

The Medano Zapata Ranch is home to one of the richest and most diverse wildlife populations in North America: thousands of elk, large bands of mule deer, eagles, sandhill cranes, bears, coyotes, mountain lions. Box T Cowboys offers photo safaris, interpretive nature walks, and other educational activities that focus on the native plants and animals of the San Luis Valley. We also offer elk hunting as part of our herd management program that includes harvesting antlered and non-antlered animals on the 50,000 acre Zapata portion of the ranch.

CONTACT US 719.683.7960