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History of LoneTree Land and Livestock

Posted on: Sep 14, 2017

History of LoneTree Land and Livestock
Cattle at LoneTree Property

At Pfister Land Company, we have the opportunity to represent beautiful properties often with unique, interesting histories associated with the land and operations. LoneTree Land and Livestock is one of these properties rich in heritage

Rick Popham and Colleen Smith Reese purchased the base of the ranch, 2,420-acres known as the Popham Ranch, in May 1971 for $37 an acre, from Rick’s mother. Both families had ranching history in the region. Rick’s family had ranched in this area since the late 1800’s and Colleen’s grandfather, Nels. H. Smith arrived in Wyoming in 1907 and was Governor from 1939-1943.

Mrs. Popham carried the note in the purchase by Rick and Colleen. And when the obligation was paid off in 1985, Rick and Colleen began growing their holdings by using the initial purchase as collateral to acquire more land. They added to their Weston County holdings over the next 46 years as 14 ranches either adjoining or near their operation came up for sale. The ranch now consists of 69,458 +/- total acres, of which 45,352 +/- are deeded acres.

The family legacy on the land has continued forward for generations. Rick and Colleen’s son Cary, his wife Codi, and their two grandsons, Denton and Ace live and work on the ranch. Their daughter Christa and her husband, Mark Hanson, also live on ranch property. In total six generations have enjoyed and worked their land.

Rick, Colleen and Cary have also continued to make vast improvements to their ranch holdings. In a total of 50 fenced pastures, they have 14 pipeline wells with 56 pipeline tanks, 21 windmills with tanks, 19 electric water wells with tanks, and 16 solar water system wells with tanks. Rick and Mark helped construct and maintain all of these watering systems. These water source improvements are in addition to the existing dams throughout the ranch. In time of drought, they have the capability of a reliable electric source of water in every pasture. The ranch holdings cover roughly 20 x 20 square miles so they have constructed 3 sets of lifetime pipe livestock working corrals in the north, middle and south quadrants of the ranch. The corral systems were designed by Temple Grandin, a renowned animal advocate whose cattle working systems are used and her seminars are given worldwide.

The Pophams and son Cary, run 1,200+ mother cows on the LoneTree Ranch, calving in April and May. Hereford cows are bred to registered Hereford bulls. Angus and first cross black baldies are bred to registered Angus bulls. Branding takes place the end of May with the helps of all of the surrounding neighbors. The ranch also runs yearlings. If moisture permits, up to 2,000 yearlings are run in the summer months as well as bulls and saddle horses.

The ranch has very diversified terrain from mountainous, steep breaks, timbered country to low-lying grassland. Many drainages start on the LoneTree property and runoff, flowing north to the Belle Fourche River and south to the Cheyenne River. The ranch is noted for its easy winters and good moisture in the spring. Grasses grown are very tough and hardy requiring minimum moisture.

Together the family has created and sustained a productive and profitable ranching legacy. This ranch is currently offered for sale as a turnkey property including livestock and equipment for $36 million. For more details, check out the video and listing for LoneTree Land and Livestock.

Post Categories: Property Update

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