Tag: Ranching

The Oklahoma Panhandle: Creating and Settling No Man’s Land


I grew up in the small town of Optima, OK, which had 92 people, in the heart of No Man’s Land, the Oklahoma Panhandle. I’ve become curious how my home region became No Man’s Land, so I did some research. It turned out to be a story of how a series of unrelated decisions by the federal government, foreign governments, and American politicians affected a largely unsettled portion of North America and accidentally formed the land in which I grew up. Here is the story of each of the four borders of the rectangular Oklahoma Panhandle.

Source: http://www.emersonkent.com/images/us_expansion_1820_adams_onis.jpg

Colorado Anti-Fracking Initiatives Anger Ranchers, Democrats


colorado-frackingOn the north slope of the Grand Mesa in Colorado, a cattle ranch sits in the Plateau Valley that has been owned and operated by the same family for four generations. They raise hay and pasture on about 1,500 acres of irrigated ground, both owned and leased, grow alfalfa and grass hay, and set a few acres aside for small grains. During the summer, they run their cattle on National Forest land — 60,000 acres that they share with 10 other ranchers. What many people might not realize about ranches like these is that the energy industry is a big part of their lives.

Carlyle Currier’s great grandfather bought his first farm in 1891, and the current ranch in 1906. “The legacy of such long-term ownership,” said Currier “gives you a real sense of the importance of caring for the land. You certainly can’t profitably farm the same ground for more than a century without taking good care of the resources.” With a son currently studying agriculture business at CSU, Currier is not only taking care of the legacy left to him, but securing that legacy for the fifth generation of ranchers and beyond. Gas drilling is an important part of this legacy, and has been for decades.

“Gas drilling has been a part of the ranch my entire life,” said Currier, “the first well was drilled in 1958 when my grandfather owned the ranch. There were several wells drilled in the late 1970s and then about 20 more in the last decade.” The ranchers and energy companies work together to keep these relationships working. “We have, of course, witnessed huge changes in the way the energy companies operated over the years,” said Currier, “but they have all generally, with a very few exceptions, treated us with respect and tried to work with whatever request we have made concerning well pad locations, timing of drilling, and protection of our property.” These relationships have had incredible benefits for the Currier family and their ranch.

Man vs. Bear — The Debate.


Here in Oregon, a rancher recently shot and killed a black bear that was hunting his cattle. The bear made the news, as it hit a record-breaking (for this area) size of 490 pounds. That is a lot of black bear, which is the smallest and most widespread of the species in North America. Of course, the real fun of this article is the comments section. As could be expected, the arguments boil down to city environmentalists versus country conservationists.

For us city folk, the arguments come down to three points:

Does Anyone Else Find This Rather Ominous?


Senator Harry Reid at a Las Vegas Review-Journal event had some interesting statements to make regarding recent events at the Bundy Ranch in Nevada.

“They’re nothing more than domestic terrorists, I repeat: what happened there was domestic terrorism….There were hundreds, hundreds of people from around the country that came there,” Reid said. “They had sniper rifles in the freeway. They had weapons, automatic weapons. They had children lined up. They wanted to make sure they got hurt first … What if others tried the same thing?”

Arizona Ranchers Prevent Another Bundy-style Standoff — Jon Gabriel


Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy was in a tense standoff with federal agents over the weekend. He wanted to keep grazing his cattle on the federal land his family has used for decades. Washington, D.C. wanted him to pay for those rights or they would seize his livestock.

After Bundy supporters flocked to the scene and a media spectacle followed, the feds backed off — at least for the time being. Much of the reporting has been contradictory, but the government claimed to be protecting the desert tortoise in the area. D.C. claims the reptile is endangered by grazing cows, while Bundy calls this nonsense.

The Lesson of Nevada — C.J. Box


What is the takeaway from the Feds vs. Bundy Ranch standoff in Nevada now that the Feds have high-tailed it? (Caution: the answer may be disconcerting to some readers.)

I won’t go into all the particulars here. The best and most balanced summary I’ve read was written by Logan Churchwell and Brandon Darby in Breitbart and I’d urge you to read it here.