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Book Online or call HomeAway Booking Assistance 888-640-7927
Book Online or call HomeAway Booking Assistance 888-640-7927

Log Cabin On Historic Yellowstone Park Ranch on the McDonald Ranch

Bedrooms 5
Space 2,000 sq. ft.
Property type house
Minimum Stay 2 - 3 nights


About the property

5 Queen Beds 2 Bathrooms, Spacious Comfy Cabin Next To Creek With Mountain View

Schoolhouse cabin is nicely restored for comfort and family get togethers. Authentic hand hewn logs, beautiful decor, with 5 Queen bedrooms, room for two more twin beds, big kitchen, 3 leather couches and chair, indoor/outdoor eating areas, big deck and yard with large trampoline with sides. Barbecue grill, fire pits, on the creek. Animals all around tame and wild. TV/DVD/cable, wifi if wanted, beautiful view of meadows, mountains..other cabins and lodge on property. Big family re-unions to just couples accommodated (at reduced rates).

Our cabins have most all amenities ...

Get away from it all, relax, daytime walks.

Located in the mountains next to Yellowstone Park. Our road connects to Old Yellowstone trail at Yellowstone River, and takes 20 minutes or is 9 miles from the park line. Takes 20-30 minutes to reach Gardiner and park pay shack via hwy 89 or Old Yellowstone Trail, (13 miles total from Gardiner).

Come enjoy the beauty and comforts of our unique ranch log cabins and Lodge while visiting our Yellowstone Park.

More Details

Shai McDonald
Member since: 2014
Speaks: english
Response time:
Within 12 hours
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
March 15, 2018

About Shai McDonald

5th Generation family on the McDonald ranch.

Our kids go to Gardiner School and we work here on ranch.

Summers we travel Montana with the kids and horses rodeoing and working with our animals.

We like to share the beauty of our place, it is private, quiet and very special for all kinds of reasons.

Shai McDonald purchased this house in 1893

Why Shai McDonald chose Gardiner

Our place was homesteaded by great grandparents and cabins they built by hand, we restored for our guests to stay in. We have horses, some cows, cats and dogs that like to visit with everyone.

What makes this house unique

All cabins are nicely restored that show the detailed work our homestead family put into building them. Unique hand hewn logs inside and out, old family photos, unique antique decor with all the ammenities. Surrounded by beautiful scenery and animals with big yards and decks give everyone enough room to move about and enjoy nature right on the porch.

Fire pit for smores, creek flowing by, barbecue grill, indoor/outdoor furniture for everyone's comfort. The horses and dogs love attention and treats.


Gardiner House Accommodation and Amenities

Property Type:
  • house
  • Guests provide their own meals
Floor Area:
  • 2000 sq. ft.
House Rules:
  • Check-in: 4:00 PM
  • /
  • Check-out: 10:00 AM
  • Max. occupancy: 12
  • Max. adults: 12
  • Min. age of primary renter: 18
  • Children welcome
  • Parties/events not allowed
  • Pets not allowed
  • Non smoking only
  • Furniture inside and out is not to be moved Cushions are not to be removed from furniture and placed elsewhere please. dishes need to be cleaned
Location Type:
  • Mountain View
  • Rural
  • Water View ...
  • Adventure
  • Away From It All
  • Family
  • Historic
  • Romantic
  • Tourist Attractions
  • Air Conditioning
  • Clothes Dryer
  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating
  • Internet
  • Iron & Board
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Room
  • Parking
  • Telephone
  • Towels Provided
  • Washing Machine
  • Coffee Maker
  • Dishes & Utensils
  • Dishwasher
  • Kitchen
  • Microwave
  • Oven
  • Pantry Items
  • Refrigerator
  • Stove ...
  • Toaster
  • Child's Highchair
  • Dining
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 8 people
  • 2 Bathrooms
  • Bathroom 1 - toilet , shower , downstairs, bench in shower, rock floor, granite top cabinet
    Bathroom 2 - toilet , shower , upstairs, blow dryer, granite top antique top cabinet
  • 5 Bedrooms, Sleeps 12
  • Bedroom 1 - 1 queen , has lamp, antique tables and book case
    Bedroom 2 - 1 queen , upstairs orange barn wood bedroom, antique dresser, mirror
    Bedroom 3 - 1 queen , upstairs green-grey barn wood with antique table mirror
    Bedroom 4 - 1 queen , upstairs pink grey barnwood with tables and lamp
    Bedroom 5 - 1 queen , upstairs cowboy blue n brown with tables lamp
  • downstairs main bedroom close to main floor bathroom with big step in shower with bench....Queen bed with tables, lamps, chest
  • Books
  • DVD Player
  • Games
  • Satellite / Cable
  • Television
  • Toys
  • Video Library
  • Deck / Patio
  • Lawn / Garden
  • Outdoor Grill
  • churches
  • festivals
  • library
  • playground
  • restaurants
Leisure Activities:
  • antiquing
  • bird watching
  • boating
  • gambling casinos
  • horseback riding
  • horseshoes
  • photography
  • scenic drives
  • shopping
  • sight seeing
  • sledding
  • walking
  • wildlife viewing
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • Babysitter
  • groceries
  • hospital
  • laundromat
  • massage therapist
  • medical services
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • basketball court
  • cross country skiing
  • cycling
  • fishing
  • fly fishing
  • freshwater fishing
  • golf
  • hiking
  • hunting
  • ice skating
  • kayaking
  • mountain biking
  • mountain climbing
  • mountaineering
  • rafting
  • rock climbing
  • skiing
  • snowboarding
  • snowmobiling
  • swimming
  • water tubing
  • whitewater rafting
Get away from it all, bond as a family, enjoy the beauty in a comfortable log cabin, and great visits to area and Yellowstone park.


Wonderful! 4.9/5 -
(14 traveler reviews)

92% Complete
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Log Cabin On Historic Yellowstone Park Ranch on the McDonald Ranch
average rating of 4.928571 based on 14 reviews
Murray, Utah

Perfect Cabin

  • 5 of 5

Talk about a beautiful setting and a great location. So peaceful and tranquil. Amy was great to deal with, very quick with responses and extremely helpful with all of our requests. Large deck was perfect for our daughter's small wedding reception!! We were so glad they were able to accommodate us. It was hands down the best setting I have ever seen for such an event. Highly recommended!

  • Submitted: Aug 30, 2017
  • Stayed: August 2017
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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The property was wonderful for our family of 11 people. All ages enjoyed (7-75).

  • 5 of 5

Loved the ranch and the horses especially. The Schoolhouse was well maintained (except for a balky dishwasher), wonderfully clean, great beds and plenty of space for all of us including our dog. Amy was helpful and responsive to our questions and issues. Our 13 year old granddaughter wants us to do it again next year. She's the rider and loved spending time with the horses. Views were fantastic and the house was absolutely perfect for our needs. Thanks for making our time in MT and at YNP glitch free and memorable. Thanks for letting us keep our camper there too. Wishing the McDonald family many joys in return.

  • Submitted: Jul 15, 2017
  • Stayed: July 2017
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Wonderful family vacation

  • 5 of 5

Great place to stay! Very clean, fit our large group of people perfectly. We loved the covered front porch. Could not have been happier!!

  • Submitted: Jun 26, 2017
  • Stayed: June 2017
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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  • 5 of 5

What a fun trip,and what a nice place to stay. When you wanted to take a break from yellostone, you could just hang around the property. The kids dident mind. Plenty of room to relax, and many acres to explore. The dirt road up there is very beautiful. Be forwarned that the cats are very friendly. My 2 youngest granddaughters wanted to kidnap the black one. See you next time.

  • Submitted: Aug 22, 2016
  • Stayed: August 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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Amazing property!!

  • 5 of 5

What a find! We just loved the schoolhouse cabin and all of the amenities. Comfortable beds and plenty of space for our family of four to spread out. Kitchen was well stocked and great space for family to cook together. The property is very remote which we loved. I swear we saw every station the Milky Way and beyond at night. The horses and sweet kitty Maggie were just great bonuses. Takes about 30 minutes to get to the park entrance but all along river so pretty drive. We enjoyed gardiner and had great rafting trip out with Yellowstone rafting company for one full day.

Great place to stay and enjoy all of awesome Yellowstone national park!!!

  • Submitted: Jul 31, 2016
  • Stayed: July 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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East Bay

Stay as long as you can!

  • 5 of 5

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay on the McDonald Ranch. We were only able to enjoy 3 evenings here due to our itinerary, but definitely wish it could have been longer. As soon as we entered the basin where the property is located, we were in complete awe. The house had everything we needed for our stay. We were a party of 6 adults and 3 small children. The kitchen was stocked with all of the essentials and the bedrooms were spacious and comfortable. The animals that roamed the property were welcoming and made the entire experience even better. The trampoline was definitely a hit with the little ones, as were the rocking horses in the back room. We have always had great luck with homes we have stayed in through vrbo and this one fit the bill as well. We would definitely stay in this home again and recommend it to anyone that is going to be in the Gardiner / Yellowstone area. The property, the home and the communication with Amy were all amazing!!

  • Submitted: Jul 25, 2016
  • Stayed: July 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Nearest Airport
80 Miles
Belgrade Bozeman
Nearest Barpub
13 Miles
Nearest Golf
50 Miles
Nearest Motorway
6 Miles
Hwy 89
Nearest Restaurant
6 Miles
Lighthouse Restaurant
Nearest Ski
60 Miles
Bridger Bowl
Nearest Beach
6 Miles
Yellowstone River
Car: necessary

McDonald Ranch...Restored log cabin built by our family 5 generations ago. In the mountains next to Yellowstone Park, beautiful views, private next to creek, very comfy cozy, clean, and everything you need indoors and outdoors.

Yellowstone River and creeks nearby for fishing, rafting, horse back riding next door, we have horses in pastures next to cabin to visit and feed goodies. Have the stagecoach trail to Yellowstone that connects to our road. Have animals wild and tame...

Our road connects with Old Yellowstone Trail a dirt road that winds up into the mountains back towards the park line.

Our neighboring ranch offers horseback rides and zip-lines 5 minutes away, as well as river rafting packages. Our other ranch neighbor is currently creating a $23 million hot springs resort 10 minutes away at the bottom of our road next to Yellowstone River. It's the old LeDuke Hot Springs area where the Corwin Springs Hotel burned down in 1916.

The North Entrance at Gardiner, MT is the only Yellowstone Park entrance open year-round , and the original entrance with the Rock Arch which is great for family photos. It's a great entrance to explore, Mammoth Hot Springs, 49th parallel where the natural hot springs are right off the river you easily walk to right inside the park line, including exploring Old Faithful and the thousands of other geysers in the park.

A main point of interest between us and Yellowstone Park/Gardiner is the Devil’s Slide. This is a rock formation roughly five miles northwest of Gardiner, MT and it is visible from highway 89, and you can get close to it driving from our road, Cinnabar Basin which runs into Old Yellowstone Trail between us and the park before you get to Gardiner. You can also see the travertine rock quarry that instrumental in travertine sales.

The Stagecoach trail walking history area is at bottom of our Cinnabar Basin road going North into Yankee Jim Canyon. There's a few spots you could picnic on the river of sandy beaches and big rocks to play on, as well as old signage advertisements painted on the rocks in the 1800's meant for stagecoach travelers going to Yellowstone Park.

Complete with friendly animals, wildlife on the ranch and during your drive, and still close to many activities including Yellowstone Park. We are like an extension to the park. Our road Cinnabar Basin runs into Old Yellowstone Trail on the Yellowstone River that leads you to the park a few miles before Gardiner. Or you can take the highway parallel to it, reach Gardiner first, then go into Yellowstone Park.

Lodging is quality, comfy, cozy, with everything you need, big yard & fire pit, creeks and ponds, animals that visit, beautiful scenery. Other restored log lodging on the ranch.

We have a wonderful fresh and fair priced restaurant 'The Lighthouse' near the same location at bottom of our road right off the highway, easy for going or coming back from Gardiner. My family's favorite place to eat as well as our guests.

We have dogs & cats that like to visit you, as well as friendly horses and cows that all love attention and treats too. They are outdoor animals not allowed inside.

There are many public accesses to Yellowstone River to do your own fishing or floating right from the Old Yellowstone Trail at bottom of our road. We have a creek that flows all the way through our place and down along our road to the river. Can try to fish some of those spots as well. It's a bit trickier fishing due to willows for the moose, and the fish are more skittish. I can send you an email detailing areas of interest and whom to contact.

We are a like an extension to Yellowstone park.

We are:

5 minutes to horseback riding & zip lining

10 minutes to Yellowstone River, river rafting

10 minutes to hot springs wellness with ranch neighbor 15 minutes to Yellowstone Park line on Old Yellowstone Trail

15 minutes to Lighthouse Restaurant (fresh incredible food)

15 minutes to Devil's slide-natural rock formation

20 minutes to Gardiner

25 minutes to Yellowstone Park Entrance Station.

25 minutes to Yankee Jim Canyon, stagecoach trail-historic

30 minutes to boiling river, natural hot springs right inside Yellowstone Park

35 minutes to Mammoth Hot Springs, ice skating, cross ctry skiing

40 minutes to Chico Hot Springs - outside Swimming Pool / Recreation area.

60 minutes to Old Faithful - Yellowstone National Park

**these times could be interrupted with animals getting in your way, or you driving slower in awe of the beauty.

The lodge & cabins have satellite wifi. It is slower than in town.

We will refund minus $75 office fee, IF we can re-book same days same property.

Email anytime for any questions or information needed of the area. We are here to help you in any way.


Rates & Availability

Taxes and fees are additional

Additional information about rental rates

cleaning laundering fee $150
Property Damage Protection $59
Pet Fee $50
Refundable damage deposit $1,000
Tax Rate 15.0%

Refund if we can re-book same dates, same year, same property, less a $75 fee.
No refund if you don't make it to your nightly stay.
Extra cleaning charges apply if excessive cleaning needed, and/or garbage is littered without bags in cans, dumsters, in cabin/lodge, or outside. Will be charged if any furniture is moved, or used in a way not intended. No cushions can be taken off furniture inside and outside.
Payment in full 90 days prior.
Please be conservative-turn lights off, & use of washer/dryer

No fires if windy, dry, dose with water.
You can scrounge around for firewood on property, and/or buy from local store.

wifi is not city speeds. it's wilderness area, so can be slow. it is satellite.
dish network is the cable tv system.
no guarantees the satellites will be always working in the mountains.

rental agreement/cancel policy also listed in attachment

Owner's Cancellation Policy

  • Canceled bookings will not receive a refund

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