The Alta Ranch: The Ponderosa

Darby, Montana vacation rental

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  • Bedrooms - 2
  • Bathrooms - 1.0
  • Sleeps - 6
  • Pets considered
  • On the Westfork Bitterroot River

Ponderosa is our second largest cabin, and at 1200 square feet it’s more like a home than a cabin. Got a larger group? Ponderosa is part of a 6 cabin ranch - Welcome to our warm family 4-season retreat. Spring offers wildflowers and fields of green; summer fishing is excellent and so are the warm days and cool nights. Fall fishing can be fantastic too, but the the colorful fall foliage steals the show. Downhill skiing is nearby; cross-country skiing, snowmobiling, and ice skating are right out the front door. Ask us about canoeing and gold panning.

Kitchen features a full-sized range, refrigerator, microwave oven, coffee maker, toaster, dishes, cookware, and utensils. Send us your grocery list and for a small fee we will be happy to stock the kitchen before you arrive!

Sleeping arrangement: Two bedrooms, each with either a king bed or two twin beds, a loft with either a king bed or two twin beds, a bathroom with tub shower.

A washer and dryer is available to all guests in the cabin as well as a TV, WIFI, and games.

Unique Features

The porch overlooks the river. Soak in the amazing panoramic view! The cabin is located about 300 feet from the river and is surrounded by massive Ponderosa pine. The private fire pit is situated between the cabin and the river. Inside, the wood stove in the living room is stocked with plenty of lodgepole pine, ponderosa pine, and Douglas fir firewood. Two-thirds of a mile of the upper West Fork of the Bitterroot River flows through the ranch grounds.

You might be surprised to hear that the The Alta Ranch is a wedding destination (spectacular mountains and forest are the perfect setting). Indoor or outdoor options for the ceremony. Creating a magical wedding celebration is a specialty of ours.

Paperback books are available in each bedroom, along with a closet and extra storage space.

Things To Do

The Ponderosa cabin offers a gorgeous view of the valley and surrounding mountains. Skalkaho Falls, just north of Darby, is one of western Montana’s “must sees.” The Bitterroot River offers over 76 miles of floatable river, from 6 miles south of Darby to Missoula and 100 miles of fishable river. When the snow flies, the Lost Trail Powder Mountain typically accumulates the most snow depth in Montana and has some of the best downhill slopes in the state. Two miles away is Painted Rocks Lake (swimming, boating, water skiing, jet skiing).

Nearby are several good restaurants. What might you see near the cabin? Moose, elk, deer, eagles, waterfowl, songbirds, and more. That's no surprise because the Bitterroot National Forest surrounds the ranch. 1600 miles of solitary hiking trails - in fact, the ranch has some interesting history including visible trail markings by native Indians. Walk-and-wade cutthroat trout fishing; Guided ATV riding; fire lookouts on Bare Cone and Lookout mountains.

Amenities: Multi-cabin resort capacity

  • Multi-cabin resort capacity 91-100

Amenities: Rental type

  • Pets considered
  • Year-round rental

Amenities: Housekeeping

  • Linens Provided
  • Washer & Dryer

Amenities: Utilities/Firewood

  • Fireplace

Amenities: Kitchen amenities

  • Furnished kitchen

Amenities: Onsite recreation

  • Outdoor grill
  • Outdoor firepit
  • ATV trail


Multi-cabin resort capacity

  • Multi-cabin resort capacity 91-100

Rental type

  • Pets considered
  • Year-round rental


  • Linens Provided
  • Washer & Dryer


  • Fireplace

Kitchen amenities

  • Furnished kitchen

Onsite recreation

  • Outdoor grill
  • Outdoor firepit
  • ATV trail

Property styles

  • Cabin
  • Cottage
  • Multi-cabin resort
  • Ranch

Property settings

  • On a river
  • Walking distance to water
  • Mountain view

Rates & Specials

$175 - $200 per night
$1225 - $1400 per week

3rd party booking

$228 - $260 per night
$1593 - $1820 per week

$200 a night (June-September); $175 a night (Oct - May)
Check-in after 4:00 p.m. Check-out by 11:00 a.m.

Deposit of 50% is required within 7 days of reservation. Balance is due upon arrival.

All rates are subject to 7% Montana Accommodations Tax. Rates include unlimited use of all ranch facilities including catch-and-release trout pond, canoe, rowboat, paddleboat, campfire sites, library, clubhouse, and laundry. The minimum stay is 3 nights. For shorter stays there is an additional $50 charge. No smoking inside the cabins, but smoking is allowed on the porch.

We accept VISA, MasterCard, American Express, personal checks, travelers checks, money orders, and cash. Deposits are refundable, less a $25 cancellation fee up to 60 days before arrival. Within 60 days of arrival, deposits are refundable only if we are able to book the canceled space. If you must leave the Alta Ranch before your reserved time is complete, you will be responsible for the entire time reserved.


My daughter and I had a fabulous stay here at the Ponderosa cabin more than we expected in nature and hospitality. We take a girls’ trip every year and this is definitely a place we will remember. Jill, California
Thank you for sharing your wonderful ranch with us. We enjoyed seeing and using all the amenities. We are looking forward to returning with our friends and family. Ed and Karen, Georgia
We were part of the clan and spent two nights and three days in the Ponderosa cabin. Loved every minute of watching hummingbirds fly in and out of our feeder. Also saw deer and a blue heron. We were looking for a place where we could relax yet still have fun playing games with the kids. We also enjoyed cooking family dinners and easily accommodated in our cabin. We thoroughly enjoyed our stay! Thank you for providing us with such a well-appointed cabin. Jim and Julie, Wisconsin
My third year attending the retreat in the fall. Always spectacularly beautiful, peaceful and refreshing. Would love to bring my family for a getaway. Heard the elk bugling. What a blessing to live in Montana! Melody

Map & Owner/Manager Info.

Property Details

9203 West Fork Road
Darby, MT 59829
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406-349-2142 If you call, mention "Rent Montana Cabins". Visit website (if listed) then return and send your inquiry.


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