Theodore Roosevelt National Park Horse Concession Owners Ride into the Sunset

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Date: February 6, 2015
Contact: Eileen Andes, 701-623-4466
Contact: Dean Wyckoff, 701-623-4466

MEDORA, ND: Shadow Country Outfitters offered its final trail rides in Theodore Roosevelt National Park on September 1, 2014. Shadow Country Outfitters have held the concession contract for guided horseback rides on park trails since 1997. The owners, Neil and Laura Tangen, decided to retire from the business at the end of the 2014 summer season. The concession was operated out of the historic Peaceful Valley Ranch in the park's South Unit. "Shadow Country Outfitters offered a wonderful adventure for park visitors for many years," said Chief Ranger Dean Wyckoff. "The Tangens were passionate about providing a high quality trail riding experience and they will be missed. We wish them well." Guided horseback rides are a tradition in many national parks. The rides began at Peaceful Valley Ranch in 1918 when the property was operated as a dude ranch and continued until the federal government purchased the ranch in 1936. Under federal ownership, the ranch housed Civilian Conservation Corps, Works Progress Administration, and Emergency Relief Administration staff during the Great Depression. The ranch served as headquarters when the park was established in 1947 until 1959, and was used as park housing until 1965. A horseback riding concession operated out of the ranch beginning in 1967. Peaceful Valley Ranch is on the National Register of Historic Places. The park will soon begin several years of much needed repairs to the buildings, but does not have immediate plans to contract with another concessioner. Visitors may still experience the park on their own horses and trail rides are available in the town of Medora. 

Last updated: April 10, 2015

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