White Stallion Ranch

9251 W. Twin Peaks Rd., Tucson, Arizona 85743
Innkeeper(s): The True Family

Saguaro Cactus 13 Jun 2015, 12:47 pm

I'm always asking the guests I ride with how much they know about the alien looking Saguaro cactus. And the answer is often "nothing" which I think is sad because they are a wonderful, interesting plant.

Their Latin name is Carnegiea Gigantica.

Their average life span is 150-175 years.

They typically grow between seal level and 4000 feet in the areas of the Sonoran Desert where freezing temperatures are minimal.

They are very slow growing - only about 1 -1.5 inches in the first 8 years of their life. They begin growing under what is know as a "nurse tree" (Ironwoods, Palo Verdes, Mesquites).
Branches/Arms do not begin to grow on a Saguaro until it is 50-75 years old. this does, however, depend on the amount of water the Saguaro is receiving.

The roots of a Saguaro are very shallow to allow it to absorb as much water as possible. After a period of rain the Saguaro will expand and look fatter - the pleats that make up its body store the water and swell. After a dry spell the Saguaro will look thinner having used up a lot of its water stores.

Sometimes there are holes in the Saguaros typically created by the Gila Woodpecker. When the Woodpecker moves out of its nest hole other birds such as Sparrows and Elf Owls will move in. Larger birds such as Harris Hawks and Red Tails will build their nests on the outside when the arm meets the trunk of the Saguaro.

We think they are amazing.

Hello, my name is Yankee. 19 Sep 2014, 10:31 am

Hello, my name is Yankee. I have lived at White Stallion Ranch for 15 years and I am nearly 30 years old.
I worked very hard for the ranch carrying guests for many years which is a job that I really enjoyed, especially towards the end of my career when I carried kids. My favorite past-time was team penning with a kid on my back. I could run so fast down the arena and when I chased the cows I felt like I was a professional rodeo horse! 
Now I am retired and the ranch said that because I worked so hard and was loved by so many people I could spend the rest of my life here with my best friend Bronco just eating and hanging out with the herd. Sometimes people look at me and say that because I am skinny I must be unhealthy or neglected. I am not. I have more food than I can finish and a superb health plan that is probably better than a lot of people in America. The summer months are a little hard on me because I have to burn a lot of calories to stay cool. But I am not unhappy. The wranglers regularly scratch me and Gry the herd manager chats with me every day about what I want for my second breakfast as I have been known to be picky about my grain. Anyway, I plan on enjoying my retirement until my time to go to greener pastures comes, but until then I wanted to say hi to everybody and remind you all to always have cookies in your pockets incase our trails meet.

Hay hay hay! 4 Mar 2014, 10:53 am

Sometimes I get asked... "How much hay can you fit in the barn?"

Approximately 407 tonnes. Is the answer Steven, Gry and I worked it out the other day.

The following question normally is... "What does a bale cost?" 

We don't buy by the bale, we buy by the ton so $285.00 per ton.

This led us to figure out a few other things...

Here are a few stats on our hay consumption (well our horses hay consumption).

407 Tons of hay goes in the barn,
815,200 lbs of hay,
1 bale is about 100lbs,
8152 bales of hay in the barn.

76 bales of hay can be moved by a "squeeze" machine in one stack,
8 of these stacks fits on one semi-truck,
14 trucks fill our barn.

We have 150 horses,
We feed 1 1/2 tons of hay a day,
547 1/2 tons of hay are fed a year,
The full barn lasts 266 days.

Last time we bought hay we paid $285.00 per ton,
That's $427.50 spent on hay we feed a day,
We spend approx $156,037.00 per year on hay.

We feed a lot of mouths.

Ladies week 27 Feb 2014, 9:25 am

Our second Cactus Cowgirls ladies week of 2014 has come to a close. And what a lot of fun we had. We'd like to give a big thanks to Carol Moore and Carol Bachmann for running the program and taking wonderful care of the girls. 

This trip, as well as the riding program, the girls had Yoga classes with Denise and Pilates classes with Pam (both veteran cowgirls), plus a guided hike at Sanctuary Cove that ended with a group labyrinth reflection walk. We must not, however, forget the highlight, the trip to La Fiesta de los Vaqueros. Otherwise known as the Tucson Rodeo. Cowboys, broncs and bulls! 

Thanks again ladies for visiting us and we hope to see you all again next year!

Doggies Doggies everywhere. 15 Nov 2013, 1:44 pm

In the next few series of blogs I'm going to talk about the dogs of White Stallion Ranch.

Ill start with the most recent... Noche.

Laura found Noche at a rescue who had set up camp in a pet store. She is a year and a half, 13lbs, and some sort of terrier mix. She has blended into the household nicely and has only had 4 escape attempts.
Her story in brief is that she was bought as a puppy for a lady by her boyfriend. When they broke up the boyfriend kept calling the lady threatening to kill the dog. The lady was so afraid that she gave the dog to the rescue. They had her for 4 months because no body wanted her (we have no idea why) and then Laura fell in love with that face. 

Noche is very friendly and loves attention.

Always exciting times 9 Apr 2013, 4:27 pm

It has been a while since this blog went out. And this is just a quick update one some of the happenings here at the ranch. We had a fabulous Easter, lots of guests, new and repeat, lots of fun. Michael and Kristin have adopted a new dog. His name is Ned and he is a part lab, part Shepard all the way from Kuwait. At 5 years old Ned spent nearly all of his life in a kennel. His mother was a U.S. military service dog who was denied the right to come home because she was pregnant by another service dog. shortly after Ned was born his mother died unexpectedly and he was the sole survivor of the litter. Ned was hand raised by a facility in Kuwait but they could not get him adopted out because traditionally Kuwaitis do not adopt large dogs (Ned weighs in at 75lbs). After a long journey home with flight delays and weather he made into the ranch with his handler for the journey, Phil. Phil spent about 4 days with us and Ned helping him adjust to all the sights and sounds of the ranch which we can imagine must have been pretty overwhelming for him at first. Now Phil has gone and Ned is home with all of M+K's other dogs and is settling in well.

Kristin has also found the horse she has always wanted... A Norwegian Fjord horse. A gelding named Lasse and he is from New Hampshire

New look dining room 8 Oct 2012, 3:39 pm

What we now know as White Stallion Ranch began its life in 1900 as a cattle ranch. Today's main dining room and kitchen were once the main/ only ranch house.

In 1940 when the Zimmerman's first turned the ranch into a Guest Ranch the main building became a dining room and kitchen plus one guest room. The rooms that we now call the Sunrise and Sunset dining rooms were where Max and his wife lived. Then they later became guest rooms and in the past 15 years they have changed functions from being a gift shop, business office, and now dining rooms.


In 1965 the Trues bought the ranch and took out the first guest room to make more dining space.

The main dining room was the first major renovation the Trues ever did and the space has been virtually untouched since.



Oddly enough the dining room has been given an older look. The walls are darker, the ceiling is now Saguaro Ribs each one individually put up, brickwork has been removed in favour of an archway that is more consistent of the building's structure. The window in the west side of the building is gone and been replaced by a niche with a bronze. And the smaller archway to the buffethas gone to make room for another table.

The Sunset and Sunrise rooms have also been given a makeover.

We love the new look and hope you will come and enjoy it with us!

Proposal! 10 May 2012, 11:55 am

For some reason my original post disappeared...

 Here it is again:

 Andrew Johnson a long time guest of 26 years came to the ranch with his girlfriend Nobu and proposed to her in what we think is a particularly romantic and exciting way. She was taken out to the desert where Andy galloped up to her on a horse, leapt off and got down on one knee. There was also a string quartet. Nobu said yes and they rode off into the sunset. Here is a link to the video that was made

proposal video

First Colt! 10 May 2012, 11:13 am

Everybody loves baby things! We are very proud to announce the birth of Steven True's horse's first baby! He is a healthy baby boy palomino in color with two white stockings/socks on his rear feet!
11 months ago we took Kachina (the mare) to our horse trader's place in Eloy to be bred to his Thoroughbred stud. Originally we had wanted to breed her to his Quarterhorse stud but the mare does not have the best feet and neither does his Quarterhorse, so, we ended up going for the Thoroughbred. A little history on both parents... Kachina is from the Navajo reservation here in Arizona and Steven bought her from our trader when she was 2 years old for $400.00. She was a little bit of a handful when he first started her but eventually she decided that she liked Steven well enough and that it was ok for him to ride her. Ever since that moment she has liked only Steven and will do anything he asks of her. The best example I have of this is the day he took her to a mounted shooting clinic and after three gunshots she no longer cared and after two hours they were loping around the course shooting balloons.
The stallion is called Tronaire and is a Chilean racehorse. He won a breeders cup race at the Goldengate track in California I think in 2004 or 2006.
The baby was born on the 25th of April at 9:30pm and he is gorgeous!He has already met his new owner - David True, Steven's brother.
We are currently awaiting the birth of our next baby. This one will be from one of our Clydesdale mares. Very exciting things happening at the ranch!

Dude Ranchers Convention 2012. 20 Jan 2012, 10:34 am

It is the greatest gathering of Dude Ranching minds! For 86 years the convention has been held annually. Typically it moves locations year to year, this year it is being in Cody WY. It is a wonderful opportunity for learning, growth and discovery and also to share experiences and new ideas.

We also use the time to honor our members who have contributed to the association. This year Russell presented Bob Cote from Tanque Verde Ranch a trophy belt buckle as an award for him being entered into the Dude Rancher's hall of fame. His name now resides there with Russell and Michael's parent's names.

The Dude Rancher's Association was founded in 1926 when Ranchers, railroad officials and national park officials attended a two-day event to discuss the five objectives set forth:

1. Establish cooperation among ranchers and railroad officials
2. Discuss the transportation and proper care of guests
3. Create advertising and publicity for the association.
4. Standardize practices
5. Create an efficient sales organization

Having agreed to all five objectives, the ranchers then added a sixth - the organized protection of fish and game.

The Dude Rancher's Association is the governing body of the West's Dude Ranch industry. Created in 1926, it provides an organized structure for members, in which they are able to exchange ideas and experiences in an effort to uphold the highest quality of services within the industry. The Association promotes the western ranch vacation, while continuing to build a strong working relationship with Federal and State land agencies in order to preserve and protect parks, forests and wildlife.

White Stallion Ranch has been a member of the association since 1990 and Russell has elected as President of the Association two different times. His one of only two people to have achieved this and we are very proud of him, his service to our ranch and also to the Association.