• Ranch Internship

    January 5-March 5 2021

Our ranch internship occurs during the busiest time of the year at Ranquilco. The guest lodge is in full swing and the place is buzzing with activity. Interns delve into a variety of activities, including:

Horse skills:

Horses are a central part of daily life at Ranquilco. Interns are taught safe practices for handling and riding a horse as well as things to look out for when guiding others. Interns learn to catch, groom, saddle, and ride, eventually assisting in catching and saddling horses for the guests, guiding trail rides, performing round-ups of the herd, and packing groups into the ranch from the end of the road. Horse work at Ranquilco presents a host of unique riding opportunities and challenges; we will stress the importance of risk management, good judgment and leadership skills throughout.

Mule packing:

Most of what we bring into Ranquilco comes in on the backs of our mules. Interns learn to saddle the mules, adjust the rigging, prepare and sling the loads, and throw a hitch to secure the loads for travel. We teach how to manage a string of mules on the trail, keeping an eye on the balance of the loads, the wellbeing of the stock, and the safety of the riders. Through this work, interns learn a variety of knots and rope handling skills. Lessons in mule packing and horseback riding culminate in a multi-day horsepack trip into the cordillera.


Interns will help cook delicious and hearty meals from scratch by occasionally participating in group meal preparation. Learn how to make sourdough bread, and to bake using a wood-fired oven. Learn the art of cooking with fire.

The other stuff:

Milking the cow & dairy processing, butchering, basic blacksmithing and knife making, tree harvesting & lumber milling, building, ranch chores, community living.

What to expect:

We do not operate on a fixed schedule; workdays fluctuate with the comings and goings of guest groups and the various happenings around the ranch. We do work long days, but follow the tradition of the siesta, often breaking for several hours during the hottest part of the day.  Ranch activities sometimes dictate that we begin our work in the very early morning, or work beyond nightfall. Flexibility, motivation, and stamina are a must. We make sure the work is balanced by time off to rest, ride, and explore. There are no phones and limited Internet at the estancia. We have a satellite email service that is available during certain hours and for a limited amount of time. We encourage you to plan on primarily being away from communication during your stay here.

Work schedules are ever-changing, but a typical week might include: 2 days of horse work and riding, 1 day blacksmithing, 1 day gardening, 1 day building, 1 day household and ranch chores, 1 day off

Cost: $3300 includes

  • Shared room
  • Food, including meat, dairy, and vegetables from the land
  • Horse-back riding

Fill out an application here to apply. If you have questions, please email [email protected].