Westgate River Ranch Resort & Rodeo

Westgate River Ranch Resort & Rodeo


We were there from 8/12/16 to 8/16/16

Shame on me for not reading the reviews before exchanging one of our weeks, for River Ranch…yep, we’re “owners” of a Westgate timeshare…we could have stayed literally anywhere we wanted, but since we’re horse people, I thought it would be fun…NOT!!

As for the accommodations, we’re “Owners”, so we had a 2 bedroom deluxe cabin (7A&B) with a nice wrap around porch overlooking the pasture…we like that, it’s like home. Our kids loved the Buffalo that greeted them in the morning…so the accommodations were what I would expect for the level we bought into years ago. We only have 2 kids left at home, but we have 8; this cabin would have slept all our family.

Aside from the accommodations…the rest was a 3 out of 10 from our “home” property or any other property we’ve stayed at. What boosted it from a 0 to a 3 was Bob out at the Trap range…great guy! I brought my own guns…but Bob was fun to spend a couple hours with.

So for the “Pro’s”:
Cabin was clean and had room to relax in for my wife and I and our 4 and 7 year old.
BBQ grill worked great.
Street party after the rodeo was ok.

If you’re an owner, you check in on Friday no sooner than 4pm (that’s what we were told, so don’t show up early, we did and sat around until our cabin was ready…).

As I stated, we’re horse/country people; both my wife and I rode rodeo for years, our kids know horses…
WELL, we should have brought our own horses. Horseback riding is guided WALKING only, ages 8 and up!! That wasn’t explained on the owners’ site we go to, to exchange our time…both our kids could outride their “wranglers” they have working these rides…but since they didn’t make the age cut (regardless that we would have signed a waiver) they could only ride pony’s…NOT!! They wouldn’t even let them ride double with my wife and I.

So, that only leaves:
Zip Line (our 4 year old makes the height, but not the weight requirement)
Rock Wall, ages 5 and up
Bungee Jumper (our 4 year old makes the height, but not the weight requirement)
Not very fair for him to sit around and do nothing…you’ll see other activities listed on their site, but here’s something to consider, ALL ACTIVITIES are OPEN: Wednesday through Sunday (hours subject to change due to weather or holidays)
The above line…so true, they shut down before 3pm Sunday afternoon…and the place turns into a GHOST TOWN!!! NOTHING FOR OUR KIDS TO DO!!!
PS…EVERYTHING is “pay-to-play”…even as Owners…if you want your kids to go down a short zip line or play the lamest mini golf…you pay!

Rodeo: I’ve seen better high school rodeo’s and that’s no joke. We had free passes, or I would have demanded our money back. They advertise it to be a full rodeo…not our night. After the opening ceremony that was nice…a quick round of bull riding (my event), a couple trick riders, then they did a calf scramble for the kids, less than 10 barrel racers, then another quick round of bull riding…and GOOD NIGHT folks! No calf or team roping (my other event), no steer wrestling…and if you get out of your bleacher, you better not get close to the “fence” that surrounds the ACTUAL arena fence…cause a “security” person will yell at you! Worse rodeo I’ve ever been to…and I’ve been to hundreds!

Food: Better bring everything you want to eat…they have a restaurant on property, but it’s only open on the weekends…again, didn’t know that.

Pool area: I’ve seen better pools at a Holiday Inn…in fact since we didn’t have anything else to do, we took the kids there Sunday, Monday and Tuesday…the restrooms were never cleaned in that time! The chairs and pool area never straightened up from the day before.

Internet: Took the staff over an hour to get ours to work…and you can only have ONE device on at a time!!! They say you can have up to 3 devices…not true! If our MacBook Air was connected, our phones or iPads couldn’t connect; and vice versa.

TV: Limited channels, and our picture quality in the main room (only flat screen in the entire cabin), was snowy/grainy…no channel guide provided.

Beds: We had a King in the master and a Queen in the other bedroom…our 5th wheel has a better mattresses…no joke!

Staff: “OK” friendly…but not very helpful or knowledgeable. When we inquired what to do with our kids for fun…the front desk said with a straight face…” mini golf is open.” When your mini golf course is so lame that a 4 and 7-year-old don’t even want to play…it’s time for a redesign!

Airboat and Swamp Buggy rides: I’m not sure where or how they all could have been booked, cause there weren’t that many people staying during the brief stay we had…but they were either closed…or “booked”…or…not booked enough??? When I asked what that meant…”we only go out full…”

OUTCOME: Even though we had booked one of our weeks…we departed before 8am Wednesday morning for a suite at the Animal Kingdom Lodge at Disney!!!