Griffin Valley Ranch: the Last Ride


The auction of 40 horses took place Saturday, September 7th at the popular ranch near Cochrane.

Chances are if you have been on a trail ride or attended a horse camp as a child, you have probably visited Griffin Valley Ranch, a beautiful family owned and operated ranch located just 20-minutes west of the town of Cochrane, Alberta. After 40 years of offering trail riding, summer camps, and camping in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, the summer of 2019 was the last year that Griffin Valley Ranch would be operating as a public ranch after the lease was not renewed.

John Owens, grandson of Griffin Valley Ranch founder Harold Griffin, has been operating and managing the ranch programs since 2009. Along with John’s wife, brother, and sister-in-law, John has spent the past 10 years running the business that his grandfather began in the 1970s. Since taking over operations, the ranch has welcomed over 100 new horses who have been loved and cared for by the Owens family and the loyal riders who visit them. Thousands of guests have come to enjoy trail riding in the beautiful scenic and majestic trails of the ranch each year. In addition, close to 700 children from Calgary and surrounding areas attend their fun and educational kid’s camps each summer. With John’s hard work and dedication to the business, Griffin Valley Ranch has become a popular destination for anyone looking to experience a taste of genuine cowboy and cowgirl culture.

Camp and trail riding operations continued as usual for summer 2019. Camp activities included arena exercises, games on horseback, riding drills, ground activities, gymkhana races and of course trail riding. Participants were bussed to and from Calgary and area every day. There were also scenic guided trail rides for groups and families. The horses are suited to all skill levels, including children, beginners, as well as advanced riders. As a thank you to the amazing community that has supported his business over the past 10-years, John will be offering a 20% discount on all trail rides for the remainder of the 2019 riding season. To book a guided trail ride, please phone 403-932-7433.

Although sad to see the gates of his grandfather’s ranch close, John plans to continue to share his passion for the western lifestyle through a new operation located on 320 beautiful acres at the south end of the Griffin property. Bar JO Ranch will launch in 2020 and will offer a smaller scaled camp with many of the current horses and staff. Bar JO Ranch will also offer pony rides for birthday parties, Stampede functions, and other events, as well as horses for traditional Indian weddings and Girl Guide adventures. The ranch will also be equipped to provide educational visits with ponies or horses at camps and schools. For more information, or to inquire about any other equine activities that Bar JO Ranch can provide, please visit