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WHO WE ARE

Gail, Mike, and Lynn, the second generation of Walkers, have directed the Colorado Mountain Ranch summer camp since 1973, building on the family legacy of providing excellent outdoor camp experiences for Boulder youth.

THE FAMILY TRADITION CONTINUES
Our Story

How it all began!

In 1947, Coach and Norma established their dream children's camp: Trojan Ranch. Their combined years of experience as elementary educators and camp directors allowed for the creation of a uniquely enriching summer camp program. The seed Coach and Norma planted has blossomed into the camp now known as the Colorado Mountain Ranch.

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And Now...

The founding principles of the Ranch still hold today. This is a place where people of all ages can have meaningful fun through wholesome outdoor activity, positive connections with nature, and a strong sense of community in the mountains. Over the years, the place and the people have rebounded from numerous setbacks, from forest fire damage to snow-load barn collapse. Today, the outlook for the Colorado Mountain Ranch is bright as the Walkers and their extended Ranch Family keep their focus ahead and up!

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The Walker Family

Mike, Lynn, and Gail are the owners and administrators of the Colorado Mountain Ranch. They are lifetime youth workers and educators. All three live and work at the Ranch year round. Lynn and Mike’s daughters Kate, Josie, and Rosie Walker, are part of the third-generation Ranch work team. The Walkers always have been and continue to be dedicated to kids!

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Gail Walker

Known to spontaneously break out into song and knows every tune in the camp song book. When she’s not reminding everyone to drink more water and wear sunscreen, she’s leading the Camp office as Executive Manager and Director, Health Care Supervisor, and Supply Manager. Her laugh is contagious and her band-aids, hugs, and lively Camp stories come easily. Gail is usually found with her doggy sidekick Tika, a cute-as-can-be rescue, and spends her time with friends in Southern Colorado during Camp’s off-season. She is retired after many successful winters working with Boulder Valley Schools during the school year.

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Mike Walker

Mike Walker manages the Ranch facility and horses year-round. Known by some as “the best horseman around,” Mike has a gentle way with both horses and campers. Growing up on the Ranch, he's become a fine craftsman, resourcefully making things work from materials on hand, fixing anything from electrical to plumbing, constructing with wood and metal, and he’s no stranger to a shovel! He is always on-the-go with a positive, fun-loving attitude, impressing the value of a hard day’s work on all who meet him, only slowing down to enjoy a moment with the grandchildren. If you’re lucky enough to be the subject of one of Mike’s poems, you’ll feel like you’ve starred in your own personalized Western ballad. Our ode to Mike is, “He can take a lickin’ and keep on kickin’.’’

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Lynn Walker

Lynn is known as “The Camp Mom,” making the Ranch feel like home to everyone and always pulling up a chair for a heart-to-heart chat to offer words of support. She strives to remember every camper’s name, appreciating the uniqueness and strengths in every individual. Lynn was first hired by Coach Walker in 1970 as a camp counselor, fell in love with Camp and then Mike Walker, and soon officially became part of the Ranch family. Today she leads staff and program development for the Ranch. Lynn holds degrees from CU in Psychology and Sociology and an American Montessori Directress certificate. Lynn loves the refreshing feel of her feet in a cool mountain stream and has a deep love for all children.

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Josie Walker

Her unique connection to children and all things in nature has guided her to carry the Camp Spirit in all she does. When not playing with the kids or discovering new insects, she’s operating heavy machinery for Ranch projects, counseling teen leaders (CITs), and driving Camp busses. In the off-season, she helps with all things in the office and ensures that all the horses get fed and that their water is ice-free twice a day.

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Rosie Walker

Rosie is known for her love of horses that she has had since she was a small child. Her passion led her to apprentice with Mike as corral manager and western riding instructor with the horse focused campers. She also established the Colorado Mountain Horse Rescue and is passing on her passion for horses to her daughters, Jade and Alanah.

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Kate Walker

She feels at home in the kitchen! Kate loves cooking for the family, friends, and for ranch events every chance she gets. When she’s not looking up recipes, she’s crunching numbers in the office or on a supply run. Kate is key member of bus operations. She somehow find time to run camp buses all while raising her son!

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Andrew Cook

Andrew joined the Colorado Mountain Ranch family when he married Kate. He is an invaluable member to the Ranch family! He has extensive IT knowledge and keeps us connected to the rest of the world by building ranch computers and managing out internet connection.

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The Grandchildren

The Ranch's legacy lives on in our grandchildren! They are some of the liveliest members of the family. Our grandchildren are blossoming member of the team that keep the Ranch running year-round. They keep us remembering Coach Walker's most memorable quotes, "Stay with the youth and it will keep you young."

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Jojo Morrison

Jojo fancies herself a bit of a nomad, calling Australia a second home and traveling the world at every opportunity. She always finds herself called back to her roots in Gold Hill with the Ranch family where she grew up as a camper, teen leader (CIT), and camp staff at the Ranch. JoJo’s driving forces are learning and teaching primitive and ancestral skills, offering team-building facilitation, and training Camp staff in her role as the Ranch’s Program Director. Challenge her to dance off and you’ll find a fast friend! JoJo is always up for a good dance party and wins costume contests galore. She holds a Masters in Organizational Leadership and utilizes her education to support the Ranch’s mission.

The CMR Family

Over time, the CMR family has expanded beyond the Walkers, including diverse individuals vital to ranch operations. More than colleagues, they share strong bonds, fostering a sense of belonging and camaraderie. Together, we celebrate triumphs, overcome challenges, and make the Ranch what it is today.

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Cassidy Gillard

Cassidy holds the Ranch's vision in her heart through her work in the special education field. When Cassidy isn't at camp she supports children with significant emotional and behavioral disabilities as they navigate their elementary school years. She loves snowboarding and hanging out with her dog, Mojito, who joins her wherever she goes. Cassidy has helped make our mountainboarding program what it is today, and still experiences the most joy when she’s surrounded by dirt!

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Cherylyn Wood

Cherylyn loves animals and all things nature. She has come to the Ranch for many years to help out even if she can't make it for the whole summer. Cherylyn believes in not sweating the small stuff. She loves coming to the ranch year after year to see the birds and is an avid bird watcher.

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Dean Jackson

With a wealth of experience in employee training and development, Dean is a tremendous addition to our team. He has a knack for quickly making new staff members feel like a part of the CMR community and his passion for helping others find enjoyment in life is infectious. Pull up a chair by the fire and let Dean tell you a tale – you're bound to leave with a smile and newfound wisdom. When he's not lending a hand around the Ranch, you'll find him training engineers, analysts, and space professionals. He much prefers carving up the slopes or exploring Colorado's scenic trails though.

The Walker Family

TESTIMONIALS

The work you do for the youth of Boulder County is amazing. Over 60 years, owned and operated by one family! Quite the accomplishment.

- DB (Parent and Alumni)

I think of my days at Trojan so often; they were among the happiest of my childhood.

- Sherri (Klein) Phillips (former camper ’78 -'83)

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