In Memory of Robert Groom

Do you have a memory of Bob you want to share? Click here.

We have so many wonderful memories of our time with Robert at Rankin Motel. Each winter Jenny and he would plan ways to improve the motel and make it a place of restoration for their guests. As Spring approached each year, so did their excitement about meeting and hosting new guests and friends from all over the world, who would come to stay with them. The Rankin is like a little slice of Heaven, and Bob so enjoyed sharing its beauty and wonder with his guests.

As Bob and Jenny have said to so many of their guests, “Enjoy, the Journey,” it has become their life quote. Robert lived well knowing you on his life journey’s path. We are sad he isn’t with us to share more, but we are thankful for the wonderful memories of him that we will always share with each other and you.

Please join us and write your memories in the “Leave A Reply” box.


Our Story Continues

I can’t remember a more beautiful fall season.  The dazzling golds and reds make sitting around the fire-pit in the evening light a special treat.  Unusual heavy rains this fall have kept the lawns beautiful and green but have wreaked havoc on harvesting for local farmers.  Crop damage equates to smaller potatoes and grain yields to harvest.  .

IMG_2066We planted a new generation of trees this past week.  The cut-leaf weeping birch trees that my dad “Barney” planted some 40 years ago (I’m feeling a bit old- the trees were about as tall as I was then) have been replaced with Aspen, Canadian Red and Maple.  They stand among the Ash and Cottonwood trees grandad planted some 70 years ago.  The one Maple dad planted behind cabin no. 4 has survived.  A small curve in the tree trunk is the only trace of where my brother Robert hacked it with the lawnmower one summer.  A Canadian Red keeps it company now.  I remember dad telling us that it takes a generation to grow a hardwood Maple.  It has happened.  The tree is tall and sturdy and ready for another generation to take care of it.

The rush of summer is a blur but I have captured it with my camera to share with all of you through blog entries.  Our new website has been so much fun to get up and going!  And Suzanne Reid is the genius behind it!  Keeping up with technology, repairing towel racks and replacing old faucets have kept up busy this past season.  Our 90th year of operation couldn’t have been better!  Robert and I are so grateful for the kind reviews our guests have taken the time to post.  Thank you!

IMG_2090The slower pace of the season is a perfect time to stop and relax with us!  We’ll be open through the 1st week of November this year to allow for new window and door installation on cabins 1 and 2.  They are the oldest cabins and need a little extra TLC to get them up and ready for guests next year.

IMG_2089cpLady will be rested up by Monday to greet you all.  She’s had a tough week supervising all of the tree planting!  Call us (208) 652-3570 and let us know when you are coming!  We’ll have a room ready for you!  And as always, travel safely!


Jenny & Robert

Kind Words from “The Coughing Bison” Blog

Kind Words from "The Coughing Bison" Blog

Just received kind words from Michael Becker, who writes a blog post called The Coughing Bison. He and his wife enjoyed a lovely visit with us this July in our Cabin Number 6.

Mr. Becker says this about us, “It is the quintessential example of roadside lodging, a throwback to the non-cookie cutter places of years past. We checked in at the front desk with Robert, who is basically an encyclopedia, concierge, and GPS all rolled into one. He gave us maps. He recommended restaurants in town. He told us about area attractions and advised us of construction zones on the way to Yellowstone. That’s the kind of service you usually don’t get at the chain hotels.”

Mr. Becker writes a fascinating blog about his trip to Yellowstone and other great sites in the northwest. It is a great blog full of places to see while staying at our hotel. To see more of Mr. Becker’s interesting posts about his trip up in our area, go to his blog,
The Coughing Bison.

Thank you, Mr. Becker. We so enjoyed your stay with us! Please visit us again!

Signs and Times over 90 Years of Hospitality!

Signs and Times over 90 Years of Hospitality!

Circa 1924  Auto camp flashback!  Pull up and get a camp spot!  I know this is grandad, D.K. Rankin (sitting closest to the door) and grandma Eva’s cousin Felix from California.  We’re not entirely sure this is the exact position of the small cabin office as it is situated today.  But early travelers did enjoy a drink of cool, well-water and got to know this farmer/homesteader/pioneer from Virgina.

sign 1971cpCirca 1967  Here we have the first sign mom and dad put up.  This is a great shot as it captures the original electric Rankin Court sign just off to back and right.  Red tulips are blooming just behind the sign so this picture must have been taken in the spring.  Plans are in the works to begin remodeling the stucco cabins, no. 1 and no. 2 (also seen  in the backround) soon!

Circa 1971  Notice the New Units in Back is added to the next sign upgrade.  I remember a new well being drilled, and a modular unit of 6 motel rooms was brought in and set on a foundation next to the house on the back of the property.  Because people could only see the cabins from the road, the New Units in Back helped bring in more business.

10-20-2013 5;42;54 PM








2009-  Here we are today!  We selected the new logo to carry on the auto court heritage, painted the pole and are ready for guests again this year!








Hope you’ve enjoyed a quick tour through 90 years of The Rankin!  We’ll share more pictures and stories as we move through the 2014 season with you.  Let us know when you need a place to stay on your way to Yellowstone Park!  We are still here and have clean, comfortable, affordable rooms or cozy cabins with wing-back chairs and books. Call Robert (208) 652-3570, or his cell (208) 851-8646 (he may be out working on the grounds and watering my flowers!).



Jenny & Robert

Rankin’s Auto Camp

Rankin's Auto Camp

Our 2014 season officially started April 9 when Dan’s Plumbing turned on the water!  A few snow banks lingered behind the cabins and Lady loved that!  Robert worked hard to get the lawns cleaned up in time for the spring rains this last week.  He’s busy mowing the beautiful green grass in between the storms now!  Daffodils, tulips and pansies enjoy spring’s simple gift of sunshine.

2014 marks our 90th year of operation.  90 years of hospitality is how we think of it.  We reorganized a bookcase in the office/house entry-way and have pictures, antique cars, a 1924 license plate, and 2 wool blankets that were used in the early auto camp cabins sitting on the shelves.  The special, keepsake blankets are a bit threadbare and soft around the edges.  One is brown with the words Rankins Auto Camp  embroidered in red along one edge. The other blanket is gray with 2 black stripes. Rankin Court is embroidered in black thread along the edge of this blanket.

We are proud that Rankin Auto Camp lives on!  What’s left of the 1890s farm machinery sits in a bed of beautiful flowers.  The perennials on the grounds are those planted by my grandmother, mother and myself.  The rooms and cabins are cozier than ever and ready to welcome you as you travel through our beautiful Yellowstone and Teton country.

The 2014 season is here and it’s looking BUSY! Robert’s getting quite a few family reunions and wedding parties scheduled. Our international visitors are coming from all over the world to stay with us.  And we are ready!  The famous fire-pit is out as are the grills.  Call (208) 652-3570, or Robert’s cell phone, (208) 851-8646 and let us know when you’ll be coming!

And as always, Travel Safely!

Jenny & Robert

P.S.  Thank you Betty for getting me in gear to update our blog site!  Waking up from hibernation is hard work!  We’re looking forward to seeing you later this summer!

To Our Guests

Right click on the picture and left click on “Save Link As…” to download to your computer. Once downloaded, you can open it and print our traveler’s prayer Betty Grover placed in all the rooms and cabins called “To Our Guests”.

Our Renting Season

Our Renting Season
May – October
Time to Fish, Hike & Bike!

Closed November- April
Gone Skiing!


Rainbows and Snowflakes

As we finished putting all of the lawn furniture away, soft, fluffy snow blessed our last task for the 2013 season.

IMG_1690rzMoments later, sunshine broke through and everything glistened.

IMG_1693It is difficult to describe how special this year has been for us here at The Rankin.  The cabins were booked for most of the season and our international guests were delightful!  They fell in love with our beautiful Yellowstone, The  Tetons and Mesa Falls.  Fishermen from Scotland were particularly delightful to visit with- Scottish brogue and fun stories sitting around the fire pit! FUN TIMES!

IMG_1476We have to share the “rainbow moment” with you in this post too!  So many storms passed through this summer ending with sudden bursts of sunshine.  One incredible rainbow arched  over our property. The color faded so quickly but we managed to capture this much of it!

A journey is a special thing and we are privileged to share in so many lives as people travel.  Offering a clean, comfortable place to rest is a pretty special thing to offer people  these days.  We’ve been at it since 1924!  The cabins are still here!

We look forward to our 90th year of hospitality in 2014!  Call us at (208) 232-8496 (our off-season phone numberor use our webpage contact form ( and let us know when you  need a great place to stay next summer!

Labors of Love

IMG_1443xIt has been a wonderful summer for us here at The Rankin!   Our cozy cabins were booked solid for most of the summer!  We love to share these special circa 1936 cottages my grandfather built.  Quilts, old pictures along wtih a few pieces of original furniture make them special places to relax on your journey.

IMG_1606Our current “labor of love” is the exterior restoration of these special cabins. Replacing wood panels, thresholds and caulking is a big part of the process as well.

IMG_1565Restoration work includes installing cedar panels along the bottom edges of the 2 oldest cabins we use for linens and storage.  The weather is holding so the stucco cabins are getting new paint as well.  We’re hoping to get them up and ready to offer guest lodging next summer. Clawfoot bathtubs will be a challenge to work around!

We are blessed with wonderful online reviews.  And Robert and I do appreciate the reviews that tell us how we can make your stay more comfortable.  We want you to know that the low water pressure will be improved  by installing new pressure valves on our pump this fall.  And our bedding inventory will make sure to replace all “flat pillows”.

We appreciated the suggestion of hanging an extra mirror in each cabin from the group of ladies who didn’t mind sharing the single bathroom, but just needed another mirror for makeup and hair-doing.  THANK YOU!

We’re welcoming hunters, fisherman and a few travelers to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks since they have reopened for a few more weeks.  Do take time to travel through the beautiful Ashton country and enjoy the fall colors!  Give us a call (208) 652-3570 and we’ll have a warm room or cabin ready for you!  We’ll be open a few more weeks before it’s time to hibernate!  Travel Safely, and Enjoy the Journey!

June News


A third dish is installed and The Rankin officially has wi-fi!  The snowball “bush” and peonies burst into bloom earlier this month.  The cooler temps are keeping everything green.  Bob won’t have to install air-conditioners in the cabins for another week.

1005402_10201442542049637_651358012_nEven bigger news is that we’ve got a 4th generation learning the biz this summer!  Niece Jenny, great-granddaughter of D.K.Rankin, is keeping the grounds beautiful, getting some touch-up painting done and greeting guests with genuine hospitality, Texas style!  Grandad was born in Virginia, and I still remember his gentle, southern drawl.  As her picture shows, when Jenny gets her chores done, she hits the river!  We’ve enjoyed some pretty tasty trout lately!

IMG_1163rzDaffodils and tulips have faded away and columbine, snapdragons and pansies are on center stage in the back lawn flower bed now. New lawn furniture, along with the fire pit and grills are ready for you!  Give us a call (208) 652-3570 and let Bob or Jenny know when you’ll be coming!  We’ll have the accommodations you need, awesome grounds to enjoy, embers in a fire-pit to roast a marshmallow over and perhaps a fish-story or two from Jenny!

Travel Safely!

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