History and Future of Cougar Ridge Ranch and Lodge
Gary lived on a ranch from 1947 to 1950 in Ferron, Utah, an hour’s drive north of Torrey. That was the beginning of his fascination of the unique geography, spectacular vistas, and adventurous pursuits of Southern Utah. Since then, he has spent his time exploring, hiking, fishing, hunting, biking, river running, and even prospecting in this beautiful region.
The history of Cougar Ridge is as unique as its stunning landscapes. The land was purchased in 1989 from Don Cook, a local Torrey, Utah resident and Mayor of the town. Its main purpose was originally for farming, but it’s now home to one of the most luxurious ranch resorts in Utah.
The initial plan was to build a ranch house and barn on the property and then just farm it, as a hobby. However, after it was built in 2000, Gary ventured up a ridge behind the Ranch House and, with some help from the Scotts (Whiskey), developed the idea of creating a destination resort for the Torrey area. That ridge is now formally known as “Scotch Ridge!”
His idea was to preserve the serenity and beauty of the natural surroundings while also creating a venue that offered adventure and learning opportunities in a luxurious, but homey setting. He also wanted to preserve the local historical and cultural traits of the area in his building design, farming, and animals. To this end, the Cougar Ridge Resort was born.
The Ranch House was built in 2000, the Lodge was finished in 2010, and the seven Casitas were added in 2017. But we’re not done yet! Our master plan is to continue to add to our Resort in ways that support the adventures, health, and wellbeing of our guests. This will include a Resort Center that will have a spacious indoor/outdoor exercise area, a spa, a conference center, a pool and hot tubs, a restaurant and bar, and various other amenities.
Our Pavillion will be able to seat 120 people under a spacious canopy, with a support building that has indoor/outdoor BBQ and catering facilities, an outdoor bar, restrooms, and plenty of storage. We will be adding thirteen more 3-bedroom Casitas, as well as a laundry building. A greenhouse and amphitheater are also in the plans. Finally, we are developing approximately 3-miles of walking paths among our animals, streams and ponds.