Sometimes people ask us how we got the name Gunstock Ranch. It sounds like something that originated in a Wild West-style gunfight, but fittingly, it actually comes from a horse. Our founder, Dr. Max Smith, bred horses with a stallion named Gunstock Rebel, and his bloodline came to be known as "Gunstock horses". After a while, Max figured he better go ahead and name his ranch Gunstock, and the name stuck.

Max and his wife Rita came to Hawaii in the 60s. Max had grown up in a little town called Central, Arizona, and he came from generations of ranchers. He remembers riding a horse to school after milking the cows in the morning. Max got a job as a meat inspector in Hawaii and then worked his way up to be Hawaii's state veterinarian, a job he held for 19 years.

Meanwhile, a plot of land that had been used to grow sugar cane became available when the Kahuku sugar mill closed down in 1971. It was situated in a beautiful area that overlooked the ocean on Oahu's North Shore. Max and his family leased the land and began work transforming it into Gunstock Ranch. When you go on trail rides, you can still spot remnants of the old sugar cane operation hidden among the forests and pastures that are now home to horses, cattle, and wildlife.

Max became something of a ranching legend here on the island and worked hard to better the land and his community. He was inducted into the Hawaii Paniolo Hall of Fame, won rodeo and show arena competitions, and supported high school rodeo riders and 4-H. He's remembered fondly by those who were lucky enough to know him. Here at Gunstock, we're grateful for the legacy he passed on to us that allows us to do what we love everyday.

The Smith family is still ranching here, and they've also welcomed the community and visitors to come enjoy this beautiful and special place. Max's son, Greg, who now runs the ranch with his wife, Kyndra, says that his favorite part about Gunstock Ranch is all the memories of raising his family here and the joy they get in sharing it with other people.

Anyone who comes to Gunstock for trail rides and other authentic paniolo experiences can feel the powerful mana and the legacy of the land from the people who have built it up and called it home for generations. We hope you'll join us for a ride soon and enjoy the adventure that much more now that you know a little bit about our story.

The Gunstock Family