There’s plenty to do
We have a wide range of western included activities and Ranger Patrol Trail rides and Gun slinging at an extra cost. There’s plenty to do but don't feel you have to do it all. Some guests love just being one of the Good Ol' Boys rocking on the front porch or bellying up to the Bar in the Saloon. Of course with your own gear you can always take a Daily Excursion and drive to the National Park Ski Fields and play in the snow (1 1/4 hours away), or go Trout Fishing, at the Ruatiti Domain, on the Manganui A Te Ao (half an hour away). Guide and licences can be arranged.
Cowboy hats, cowboy boots, Jeans and western gear are encouraged at all times, and for that extra bit of reality you can strap on some gun leather and make those tin cans hop.
Things you can do away from the Ranch. SH4 is 45 minutes away. Hike to or from the Ranch. Tramp the Maungaparua Track. Visit Raetihi and Ohakune. Drive up to the Turoa Ski fields. Visit National Park and Whakapapa. Visit the Waiouru Army Museum. Go white water rafting at Taihape or ride the Aerial thrillseeker. Helicopter rides to the Bridge to Nowhere can be arranged in conjunction with your visit.
When night falls
When night falls and there's silence all around you, take your favourite beverage and join the crew around the BBQ or campfire. Enjoy old time or modern cowboy music and maybe a few tall stories. Alternatively you can play poker or socialise in the Saloon, read quietly in the Parlor, play Billiards or Darts in the Billiard Saloon, watch classic western movies in the Courthouse, or just stargaze under a blanket of southern stars, it’s up to you. Whatever you do you'll enjoy the peace and quiet of our remote location.
Ranger Patrol Excursions
For those who don’t want to hike over distances, but would like to ride the range, you can venture up the Mellonsfolly Ranch trails on a motorised Horse Trek. This is not possible during Winter months. We have Polaris 'Ranger' motorised "Work Horses", seating up to three. For a modest charge of $50 per person you can take the opportunity to go on a 'scouting trip' to new frontiers on the Ranch property. These vehicles provide an opportunity, in association with one of our staff, for you to see back country areas that would otherwise be denied to you.
Hop on board and ride out
Trail Rides – on our motorised horses - extra charge activity
click here for full information on Trail Riding. The Ranger Patrol riding experience can be arranged during a stay at Waterfall Mountain and this is the ideal place for people who want to head out on the trail and see some back country sights. Mellonsfolly Ranch features some of the best back country exploring in NZ, book a Motorised Horse Trek on our Ranger Patrol vehicles in conjunction with your stay.
Come and shoot those pesky clay birds out of the sky! Clay Bird shooting is an extra charge Activity at Mellonsfolly Ranch for those guests who like to make “a big bang” We have an Auto Trap machine with an Ultra Smooth action, foot pedal release and 50 target feeder. The machine has a consistent 100 yard range and powered remote release, along with an under & over design shot gun incorporating single trigger ejector release.
Shooting participation: $25.00 per 10 Shots
For your information:
• This will establish how good a shot you are.
• Held in Bush Settings
• Ear Muffs and Safety Glasses supplied
• Competition within groups can be arranged
• Safety rules apply
• Full prior briefing on equipment.
• Limit on numbers
Strap on some Gun Leather
Gun slinging - Signed waiver required - extra charge activity
Strap on some Gun Leather
Want to’ pack some iron’ western style and fast draw your Colt or Smith & Wesson Co2 air pistol to shoot straight and true. You can at Waterfall Mountain at our cowboy shooting range. Make those tin cans hop with up to 36 shots per Co2 powerlet cartridge. This activity is under the supervision of the Range Marshal, whose word is law.
For Gunslinging, Holsters and six-guns are provided from the Marshal's Office. Almost all sizes are available including those big hombres Hoss Cartwright style, or the petite little saloon girls that used to roam the west. You will be outfitted and provided with a freshly loaded six-gun and up to 36 slugs in 6 magazines for your tin can shoot up. Gunslinging hire comes with 1 Co2 cartridge, which is your initial pistol load up. Extra gas loads $10-00 each with another 6 magazines.
A Cowboy Shooting round, costing $20-00 per use, is the perfect way to play the cowboy or end your trail ride western style and get some great photos for the folks back home. Extra Co2 'loads' are available at $10-00 each after you have expended the 1 Co2 cartridge included in your hire. All guns are air powered and not regarded as dangerous unless used negligently.
For those who just want to “Pack some Iron”, impress the ladies and try out a few Main Street fast draws you can be outfitted with a holster and a gassed up Colt sixgun which will make plenty of noise but won’t shoot anyone or anything. Supplied with 1 Co2 cartridge but no slugs at $10-00 per use.
Signed waiver required.
Refer Rates for Gun slinging Costs
Pitch some horse shoes
The horse shoe pitch consists of two ends, each of which has a pitching box which is six foot square. Inside each pitching box is a smaller rectangle four foot by three foot and this is referred to as "The Pit". In the middle of each pit is a metal stake one inch in diameter, each stake separated by thirty feet. Players throw horse shoes at the opposite stake one after another. Horseshoes that completely surround the stake are called "Ringers" and score 3 points. The first player to reach twenty one points wins the game. Refer to our “How To” sheet.
Take a Hike
Mellonsfolly Ranch is located in one of the most remote areas in the North Island, west of National Park and east of the Whanganui River. You are at the trail-head of the trails of the early settlers of the Ruatiti and Mangaparua valleys. The area abounds in wildlife - deer, goats, rabbits and pheasants, wood pigeon and other birds including the rare native blue duck.
Hunting is strictly prohibited on the Mellonsfolly property, so Wildlife encounters are common. Consisting of 1000 acres of virgin land, the property is adjacent to DOC conservation land and in proximity to the Whanganui River National Park area, ensuring unspoiled bush and streams. The Mangaparua old settler road to the 'Bridge to Nowhere' commences a few kilometres from the ranch and is a popular destination for hiking excursions or picnic trip excursions.
Bath with a friend
Our Bath House features two 'Slipper' full size baths for couples, orientated for conversation and a drink or two. Fresh towels are provided in the Bath House & music can be selected from a dedicated 5 disc player. A pot belly stove and the period décor make this a memorable experience reminiscent of the movie 'Shanghai Noon'.
Watch a movie
The Courthouse has a dual role as a movie theatre for evening screenings of western movies. We have all the old classics and the modern ones too. We also have some of the best western comedies and episodes of some of the great television westerns of the past.
If you want to expand your options, we have 8-10 Mountain Bikes for you to explore the Ruatiti Valley or ride the 'Join Up' track and trail ride tracks. You can also ride the Mangaparua Old Settler Road to the Trig on the track to "The Bridge to Nowhere". Take our lunch pack with you and submerge yourself in our remote unspoiled location.
BYO Trout Fishing Gear
If Trout fishing is your passion there are some excellent trout fishing opportunities on the Manganui A Te Ao river, 30 minutes from the Ranch. Wade in and cast your line into a trout haven. Fishing pressure is light as it is secluded from the more popular fishing areas. Licences and some local guiding advice is available by arrangement.
BYO Ski Gear
We are 90 minutes away from the ski fields of Ruapehu. If it’s winter and you want to mix your activities you can play in the snow and return to the comforts of Waterfall Mountain in the evening. Ski storage is in the Barn.
Other Accommodation Links:
River Valley Stables
Horse back riding, horse trekking and trail riding in the northern Rangitikei, a particularly beautiful part of New Zealand. Rides, from two hours to full day. Multi day horse riding and accommodation packages staying at River Valley Lodge, are also available.