Leading up to our 40th birthdays, we decided to do something a little bigger than we normally do. Mine happened in 2020 right after COVID hit so my list of ideas got wiped out, but I’m happy with my lifetime membership to an area taproom. Tyla’s birthday was this year, so she had a few more options and ended up deciding on a few nights at Leaping Lamb Farm in Alsea, OR.
I feel like you never really know what you’re getting with these kinds of places. How much do you get to interact with the animals? How much freedom do you have to roam? Are the people that work there nice or just busy to move on to their next task? We hit the jackpot with this place.
There are two rental houses on the property. One is a giant farmhouse (over 4000 square feet) built in the 1895 that sleeps 14. We rented the newer, smaller cottage that sleeps 6, and we were happy to see that it had recently been outfitted with a mini-split so we had air conditioning during the 90-degree days. As a bonus for us, the farmhouse reservation was canceled so we had the whole property to ourselves!
Greg and Scottie are the owners but Greg was busy with projects and Scottie was away, so we spent the whole time with farm manager Denny, and we also got to chat a bit with his wife Kate. Denny and Kate were both wonderful, and I marveled at Denny’s patience for answering our endless questions.
Denny met us at the house when we pulled up. It was around 5pm so we headed out on a tour and started our first round of “chores”. When they say chores, what they really mean is letting us participate in the best parts of the farm. Every morning at 9 and every evening at 5, we’d meet up with Denny and either let all the animals out of the barn or collect them back in the barn. We’d get hay down from the loft, feed them all, etc. We helped muck the stalls too. Denny also showed us how he moves irrigation around the farm, how to prime the pump from the natural spring after the power goes out for a while, and how to run the pump from the creek on the property.
When we weren’t with Denny, we had free reign of the property to hang out with the chickens, turkey, peacock, sheep, goats, cats, donkey, and horse. Tyla loved roaming the property to find Chip (donkey) and Tater (horse). It’s good that all the animals were so friendly because Tyla spent a lot of time petting them all. We all enjoyed hanging out by the creek and walking on the trails too. Elijah loved having free roam of the property and once he knew the rules, we cut him loose to explore on his own.
It was a tough week on the farm, and we tried to stay out of the way while Denny dealt with some animal issues, but we also appreciated him sharing his thought process on how to handle the various situations. I heard someone say that “interested people are interesting” and I loved hearing Denny talk about the farm. He clearly loves it, knows a lot, and enjoys the continued learning process.
Most of the time when we go on vacation, Tyla and Elijah both ask, “Can we come back here sometime?” That happened here too, but there were more tears shed than normal when we left this place, and Tyla is already trying to book a return visit.
Thank you to Denny, Kate, and the whole crew at Leaping Lamb farm for a vacation that we won’t forget!