“It was a rich and varied experience - beautiful and meaningful activities, interactions with people, and physically and emotionally healing. Food, lodging, natural beauty, staff – it was all so nurturing and stimulating. You allowed me to discover your graces at my own pace. You have restored in me a newfound peace. I will be forever grateful for this week and I pray that I will be able to carry the lessons I have learned with this week with me for all of my days on this earth.”

— 2018 mindful unplug experience retreat attendee


The Mindful Unplug Experience: Sensing into Ease

13 - 20 July 2019
Feathered Pipe Ranch - Helena, Montana

Mindfulness is a potent and accessible practice fostering equanimity and peace in an unsettled, noisy world. Unplugging mindfully offers a chance to reclaim qualities of ease that may be diluted or lost in the hectic whirl of our over-scheduled lives. At this fourth running of our popular homegrown Feathered Pipe retreat, we’ll explore the “power of the pause.” It’s a week of sensory awareness facilitated by accessible, breath-focused yoga and mindful movement, user-friendly meditation, and imaginative and participatory visual and sound practices that capitalize on our spacious Big Sky setting.

Put simply? The week is about sliding into ease by taking sanctuary in the senses. You’ll slow down and savor the unfiltered experience of your world in the tranquil Rocky Mountain landscape of the storied Feathered Pipe Ranch, the place that longtime Ranch teacher Erich Schiffmann calls his “favorite place on the planet.” No prior experience with any of the modalities we’ll explore during the week is needed: this is a retreat for anyone and for everyone, so come as you are and pause, breathe, move, see, feel, and drift your way back into fuller sensory awareness.  

It was a rich and varied experience — beautiful and meaningful activities, interactions with people, and physically and emotionally healing. The food, lodging, natural beauty, staff — it was all so nurturing and stimulating.
— 2018 Mindful Unplug Experience Retreatant

Our handpicked team of experienced guides supplies you with practical, real-life tools and skills that revive your appreciation for the sacred currency of your moment-to-moment awareness. The Mindful Unplug Experience team will be available throughout the week for spontaneous sessions arising from interests and desires that emerge from the group — so don’t be shy about sharing your own questions and insights as they arise. Strolls through and around the environs of the Ranch, illuminating dharma talks, musical intermissions, and enquiry into mindful navigation of our digitally-saturated lives are just a small sampling of the impromptu activities that sprung up during past Mindful Unplug gatherings.

This retreat weaves a restful balance of scheduled activities into sumptuous stretches of unstructured time for you to settle into your natural cadence. The intimate and uncrowded Ranch retreat venue — we host only one program at a time each week — offers as much opportunity for community as it does for solitude and abundant personal space. Throughout, you’ll be surrounded by one of the most scenic mountain locales on the planet, nourished by sumptuous fare, and cared for by our attentive staff. You can look forward to:  

  • Morning yoga, mindful movement, and meditation
  • Afternoon sensory awareness, bookended by meditation, that feature creative visual mindfulness practices to see the world anew and re-awaken your appreciation for the healing influence of sound creation and awareness.
  • Evening options for dharma talks, restorative practice before sleep, active listening to curated musical playlists, strolls to the nearby ridge on the continental divide, and more.

Our week together additionally includes opportunities for mindful, small group morning walks and an optional midweek off-Ranch nature excursion to relish more of Montana’s varied and stunning summer landscape.

This retreat typically draws people of every age and with a wide-ranging array of life histories and backgrounds. It’s always an enchanting surprise to see what experiences and subjects unfold at each summer’s serene, playful gathering! You’ll return home not only with new friends and a foundation for using your senses to mindfully navigate the outer world, but with meaningful insights into your own inner landscape too.