- The Washington Times - Tuesday, August 15, 2000


The Marriott Ranch is in Hume, Va., about 65 miles west of the District.


Phone: 540/364-3741 for the trail ride barn or 540/364-3221 for bed-and-breakfast reservations. Web site: www.marriottranch.com.


Take Interstate 66 west toward Front Royal. Get off at Exit 27 (Route 647). Turn left at exit and right on Route 647. Take Route 647 for four miles to Route 635. Turn right on Route 635 and follow for 9.5 miles through Hume to Route 726. Turn right on Route 726 for 1.5 miles to the Marriott Ranch Trail Rides entrance on the right.


Follow the drive to the end near the barn where parking spaces are adequate. Beethoven, the ranch's friendly dog, will greet you upon arrival.


A 90-minute trail ride is $28.50 on weekends and $26.50 during the week. A $2.50 per-person discount is given for groups of five or more. A variety of special rides are also offered, such as moonlight rides, which are $32.50 per person. Three-hour river and mountain rides are $57 per person. Overnight rides are $150 per person, leave at 2 p.m. and return at noon the next day. The cattle drive is $150 per person. The special rides are restricted to age 16 and older.
The Manor House has four bedrooms, each with a working fireplace. Bed-and-breakfast rates are $195 per couple per night. Other rooms are available in the carriage house, at $125 and $165 for a suite. The cottage house is ideal for families or several couples with three bedrooms, two baths, a kitchen and a living room with fireplace. It rents for $500 per night. All room rates include an afternoon tea and a full breakfast.


Trail rides are scheduled at 10 a.m., noon and 2 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. The ranch is not open for rides on Mondays.


The Marriott Ranch also holds special events for corporate or family gatherings, such as executive retreats, company picnics and social events.


Oasis Winery is just a few miles from the ranch on Route 635. It offers tours as well as sandwiches and outdoor tables with wonderful views. Phone: 800/304-7656.
Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park in Front Royal is worth seeing any time of the year. Take a picnic basket and soak up the sun from one of the outdoor picnic sites. Cost is $10 per vehicle, and the park is open seven days a week, 24 hours a day. Phone: 540/635-4558.

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