Shayne - Ranch Owner
Shayne is the owner and he spends much of his time at the ranch teaching these days. Shayne started the ranch in 1998, inspired by the idea of a guest ranch that could share the grandness and excitement of the cowboy way and Buck Brannaman style horsemanship with all levels of rider experience. Most doubted that such a thing could be done. The effort has been astounding, but what we do here is unique and what Shayne has found is a passion for great horsemanship. It shows itself in every horse, wrangler and guest that comes here.
Shayne and Buck have been best friends for a long time, and Buck has been Shayne’s only mentor. He can’t count the number of clinics he’s traveled to and ridden in with Buck over the past 17 years. I don’t think you’ll meet another individual who has worked harder at his horsemanship as well as at his teaching. Shayne is dedicated to sharing all he’s learned with our guests and us.
Des - Ranch Manager
Des is originally from Southern California but has really adopted Montana as her home these last (nearly) 8 years she’s been at the ranch. She started riding horses when she was in college and was hooked immediately! She never had formal lessons before coming to McGinnis but knew there was a better way to work with horses than she had seen thus far. Luckily, she made some friends who introduced her to Buck. Buck told Des that if she really wanted to pursue this horsemanship journey, McGinnis Meadows was the best place to do it! So to McGinnis she went and it has been an incredible journey thus far!
Des rides many of the colts, future guest horses and a handful of client horses in addition to assisting Shayne in teaching horsemanship to the guests. That’s in addition to keeping the ranch running like a well-oiled machine!
Randy - Ranch Manager
Randy is one of our ranch managers. He left Pennsylvania when he was 17 and flew to Wyoming. He knocked on a few doors and has been working for cattle outfits, guest outfits, guided for hunters and packed up to 55 horses on 100-mile trips into the Yellowstone area. He even rounded up wild horses for the BLM! Listen to some of his stories and you’ll be rolling with laughter or dropping your jaw in awe.
He heads up the cattle, the fencing, the haying…he always seems to be working on some sort of project to better the ranch.
Of course, guests love it when he has the time to ride with them as well. Nobody can come up with off-the-wall nicknames like Randy can!
Roby - Head Wrangler
Roby came to us from North Carolina where his family has run a barn specializing in classical dressage for several years. When Roby was quite young, his mother started taking him to some of Buck Brannaman’s first clinics in North Carolina. He was instantly hooked! Using Buck’s methods, he had worked with several horses for the public but was really looking to expand on his knowledge. When he got the opportunity to come to McGinnis, he took it right away!
Roby has truly become an asset to the ranch. He rides colts and many of our client horses. Shayne also counts on Roby in teaching the horsemanship, as he is truly dedicated to this way of riding and really has a knack for explaining it to our guests.
Nathan - Wrangler & Farrier
Nathan is our farrier extraordinaire! After four years in the Army Nathan decided to turn his attention to horseshoeing—he’s been shoeing now for 9 years. He began apprenticing with a master farrier for 2 years, spent some time working for UC Davis Veterinary Hospital as an apprentice farrier and then set off on his own. He takes great care in setting up very specific trimming and shoeing schedules for each horse, and with all of his dedication, our herd has never been more sound!
Nathan truly enjoys spending time with the guests, be it in the saddle, in the lodge or around the fire. If you head out on the trail with him in the summertime, he may even stop the ride to pick flowers for all the ladies!
Janice - Wrangler & Office Manager
Janice grew up in and around East Fishkill, NY, but was always drawn to the west. She fell in love with horses as soon as she could talk and finally convinced her parents to let her have a pony at age 12. Working to support her horse habit she was a show groom for hunter/jumpers, exercise girl on the track, and spent many years competing in barrel racing and speed events.
During a period in life of being horseless, she became involved in sports to fill the void and competed in bicycle and cross-country ski racing, which ultimately led to career in coaching and athlete development. Despite the joys that these endeavors brought, she feels fortunate to have found her way back to the horses and knew that Buck’s style of horsemanship was what she had been looking for.
She has been following it ever since and fell in love with McGinnis when she visited as a guest in 2014. After spending last summer of 2015 interning here, she was hired on as a wrangler and is now helping in the office as well, putting to use her marketing and business background. She will continue to study this style of horsemanship “forever” and is loving life on the ranch!
Sue - Wrangler & Housekeeping Manager
Sue is actually a professional fertility nurse in her professional life! Although she loves her work, she had been longing to come to the ranch for an internship for several years. Sue was finally able to join us as an intern in December of 2016. She did a 7-month internship and then was hired as a wrangler for the season. She just fell in love with the life here and loves the fact that she can grow in experiences of all kinds, be it with horses, in becoming valuable by learning other jobs and in now in learning how to manage people. In addition to her wrangler duties, she has taken on the task of housekeeping manager and honestly, the entire outfit looks incredible!
Brenda - Wrangler & Vet Tech
Several years ago, Brenda found out about the ranch and was mesmerized by the message we taught, the country where the ranch was located and the treatment of our large horse herd. She beseeched us for an opportunity to become one of the crew and was initially hired on as a ranch hand/gardener and as a personal assistant to Shayne. Over the years she has been given more and more responsibilities and now has grown into the position that she wanted all along—she is now a wrangler and when she isn’t riding, it’s because she is the primary caretaker of our 100+ head of ranch horses! Brenda is also quite the writer and her short stories are featured in our monthly newsletters. She’s super smart too—she has a Master’s Degree in Education! And she may be one of the kindest people you’ll meet!
Kevin - Junior Wrangler
Kevin has been coming to the ranch since he was 13 years old! His mom brought him out for winter horsemanship for his spring break that year and once he got home, all he could talk about was coming back! He did an internship with us for the last two years and this year he’s going to try his hand at wrangling. Don’t be fooled by his youth—he is an old soul, he’s turning into an exceptional rider and he’s just plain nice to be around.
Vanessa - All-around Helper, Junior Wrangler and Shayne’s Granddaughter!
Vanessa has grown up around the ranch on and off over the years. Shayne had her on a horse really early on! Although Vanessa is mostly limited to coming out in the summertime because of school, she loves every minute of the life she gets to live out here. She adores the horses, the riding and she is ever helpful around the lodge, the barn and the arena.
Jenna - Breakfast Cook
Jenna came here as an intern last year for a few months. She made mention at one point that she absolutely LOVES to cook! This year, she will be running our continental breakfast and continuing her riding education each afternoon during the week. Jenna comes from a ranching family and spends much of her time at home taking care of cattle. We’re happy to have her cattle expertise with us this season!
Miriam - Dinner Cook
Miriam was born in the Philippines but spent most of her life growing up in Michigan. She was originally drawn to the ranch through her photography where she had been studying after college in NYC. Something about the place struck her and she applied for a housekeeping job. Little did all of us know how her talents would expand! In addition to providing us with many of the beautiful photos on our website, she took on the job of ranch cook last this past winter and has excelled in ways we only could have dreamed of! Miriam has a natural knack for flavors—but her food doesn’t just taste good—it is always prepared in such a beautiful manner that it looks like it’s coming to you from the bakery, or a food photography shoot! Our guests tell us that she’s the best ranch cook ever and we certainly agree!
Erin - Kitchen Help/Housekeeper
This is Erin’s second season at the ranch! Erin originally came here from Minnesota where she rode horses, worked in a bakery and even worked some as a vet tech! She has done all manner of jobs on the ranch, from housekeeping, to helping in the kitchen. She’s a pleasure to have around—always positive, always working hard and always with a little bit of wit to make you smile.
Anna - Ranch Hand
Anna came here from Iowa as a guest this winter and was itching to get back. She’ll be one of our ranch hands this year as well as doing a shoeing apprenticeship under Nathan’s tutelage! We are excited to have her on our crew—her laugh is contagious and she works hard to do the best job she can—whatever the job may be.
Esther - Grammy
The legendary Esther Bock – the Mother to Randy Bock and a ranch favorite! She gets here early every morning with Randy and Dori and is busy all-day long. She helps us quite a bit in the office by answering the phones while we’re out riding, filing paperwork or sorting through bills. She’s 89 years old and doesn’t miss a beat. Her sense of humor is quicker than, well, just about everybody’s! I think we all can agree the ranch isn’t the same without her around.