Ranch Outfitters
    

Wyoming has often been called the first state in outdoor America. We have unbelievably blue skies, awe-inspiring natural wonders, landscapes that can be found nowhere else in the world, and oh yes, we have been called a hunters paradise.

Wyoming is a place where you can still glimpse the true American west. It is the state where the myth of the cowboy was born and cowboys still exist. It is a land of wide-open spaces, and exciting places. When it comes to national parks, forests and monuments, Wyoming boasts a number of firsts, including America’s first national monument, Devils Tower. Wyoming is also home to the nations’ first national forest, Shoshone National Forest, and Yellowstone National Park, the world's first national park.

Our ranch is one of the oldest in Wyoming, founded in 1878 along the Bozeman Trail. The 88 Ranch became famous for its bucking horses and was a welcome stage stop for many weary travelers. Herds of longhorn cattle were trailed past the ranch headed to Montana and herds of buffalo and packs of gray wolves were plentiful. The 88 Ranch has a colorful history and we invite you to come and experience true western hospitality at its finest. We are forever west.

88 Ranch Outfitters has been outfitting hunters since 1981. We are a family run guiding and outfitting operation. We hunt on 90,000 acres of private land. We offer hunts that are second to none. Keeping tabs on the game movement throughout the year and knowing where the trophies are is our business. We offer quality hunts for trophy animals, while offering special management hunts. Our goal is to provide everyone with the opportunity of a quality hunting experience. We pride ourselves on our 100% success rate. Our game herds are in great shape, and now is the time to book your hunt!

Our camp is located at our ranch headquarters 40 miles north of Douglas, Wyoming in the middle of the Powder River Basin. The nearest airport is the Casper/Natrona County International Airport (CPR). Both Delta and United serve this area. Some hunters choose to fly into Denver International Airport (DIA), located in Denver, Colorado. DIA is approximately 270 miles from the ranch, and will be a little less than a five hour drive. You provide your own transportation to and from the ranch.

Wyoming has been called the most uncomplicated 98,000 square miles in America. So why not make a simple choice and come and see it for yourself- you won’t be disappointed!

Telephone/Fax: 307-358-5941 - henryranch@wyoming.com

     

Welcome to one
of Wyoming’s most
historic ranches.

The 88 Ranch has been in our family since 1878 and is located along the famous Bozeman Trail in east central Wyoming. It has been said that the 88 Ranch is the oldest ranch north of the Platte River in Wyoming Territory.

The first 88 ranch house, the three room building
on the right, was built in 1878.
 

From the 1870’s through the 1880’s the Bozeman Trail was heavily traveled. At that time the Henry family ran a stage stop, a relay station for the Patrick Brothers Stage Line, kept horses for stage changes and ran a roadhouse to feed and bed weary travelers.

The 1880’s were busy years for the Henry’s. Stages stopped for meals and fresh horses, wagon trains stopped to rest, water and fill out their supplies. Through the years the stage stop brought many noted visitors to the “88”. One of the best remembered visitor’s was Owen Wister, author of The Virginian. Owen spent a week with the Henry’s, and it is said that Mike Henry, known as “Judge” Henry by his friends, was the prototype of the Judge in Wister’s book. Owen used the experiences he acquired at the ranch for several scenes in the book.

The Henry’s also had some rather colorful neighbors. George Pike, a well known gambler and horse thief, lived on nearby Bear Creek. George however was a good neighbor and visited often with the Henry family. The most interesting thing about George Pike was his death. The story goes that George died of a heart attack after winning a large hand in a poker game in a local saloon.

  Mike Henry and his family

Newly elected sheriff Charles Messenger was allegedly a participant in the game. Since it is impolite to quit when ahead, the remaining players decided that if George could speak for himself he would have stayed to the end. He would not quit on a friend and the game should continue. George’s body was propped up and a bystander was requested to continue playing George’s hands. George’s winning streak continued and allegedly he won enough to go off in grand style and pay for a nice tombstone.

The Henry’s other neighbors were located near the Cheyenne River Crossing. On the east side of the road was a roadhouse used by the Shoestring Gang, as a headquarters and hideout for their stolen loot.

They kept an ever-ready supply of horses, ready for immediate use. Butch Cassidy and his gang would also show up at the roadhouse when their usual hideout, the “Hole in the Wall”, would quickly need to be abandoned.

While the Henry’s generous spirit was generally appreciated, sometimes they were taken advantage of. There was an evening when a weary travelerl came to the ranch riding a horse and leading a pack horse. The family invited him to have supper with them and then the visitor spent the night in the barn. The next morning when the family got up their guest was gone, along with about thirty of their horses. Mike Henry trailed the horse thief over 160 miles. Eventually the thief panicked and abandoned the stolen horses, and Mike recovered his herd. The horse thief was also found to have killed “Texas Jack”, and was put in jail for both crimes.

Underneath this stone in eternal rest
Sleeps the wildest one of the wayward west
He was a gambler and sport and cowboy too
And he led the pace in an outlaw crew
He was sure on the trigger and staid to the end
But he was never known to quit on a friend
In the relations of death all men are alike
But in life there was only one George W. Pike

Mike Henry loved his horses, and by purchasing Morgan Studs and breeding cold blood range mares, he developed draft horses and saddle horses which became well known all over the west. At the time of the Boer War, Mike was said to have about three thousand horses, and he shipped a train load to the Dutch government, around 1910 or 1912. About the beginning of World War I, around 1914, two British officers came to the “88” and purchased between two and three thousand geldings. Since the horses all had to meet specific standards in height, weight and color, it took weeks for the horses to be gathered and worked.

In the process of raising and breaking horses, the 88 discovered that horses that couldn’t be broke made great bucking horses for the rodeos. The 88 Ranch became famous for their bucking stock.

It was written in 1919 that Mike Henry, after residing sixty-four years in Wyoming, was considered to be the oldest white settler in the state. He was indeed a pioneer, having established the first coal mine in the state, owner of vast ranching interests, hotels and other commercial undertakings. Many things have changed for the Henry family since those years long ago. Today the 88 Ranch is proud to be raising top quality Quarter Horses, bred for speed and agility. 88 Performance Horses is proud to offer outstanding rodeo performance horses that will cow and can be used successfully on the ranch as well. The Henry family currently raises commercial Black Angus cattle and runs a successful outfitting business, 88 Ranch Outfitters.

Mike Henry driving a team of buffalo
in Douglas, Wyoming.