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About the Circle A Ranch

Our History
The Circle A Ranch is part of what once was the traditional Navajo and Apache summer camps and grazing lands.   During Spanish rule the year-round Rito de los Pinos (Pine Creek) made the area valuable for colonial rancheros.   The present borders were established in 1910 by John Young, a Mormon colonist and US Forest Service ranger.

In the 1920's, when artistic-minded easterners were attracted to northern New Mexico's enchanting landscapes, the present two-story adobe lodge was built and a dude ranch established.   The nearest post office and telephone exchange were 65 miles away.   The route here from the city was a dirt road through the pueblos of the Santa Ana, Zia, and Jemez.   It was a hard trip, but folks came.

 

In 1954, two young school teachers, Alice Bartlett Woolf and Elaine Bartlett Charvoz, purchased the ranch and converted it to a girl's summer camp.   They established a magical world for the girls, many of whom have returned to relive fond memories.   Besides creating art, music, drama and multi-cultural celebrations, the girls roamed the forest and meadows, swam in the lake, and explored the "little grand canyon".

Alice's and Elaine's father, Ross Bartlett, bred and trained American Saddlebred horses, so each girl was fitted with saddle and horse.   The camp closed in 1978 when Alice and Elaine retired.   The ranch has remained with the family since, operated as a lodge, meeting place and guest ranch.

Ross Bartlett often said, "We are only stewards here.   Others have been here before, and others will come".   On that basis the family opens the ranch to intrepid travellers, wishing them the peace and magic of this remarkable place.   Come for a visit or stay and help us carry the Circle A energy into the future.