Gunnison’s ranching roots are as deep as they get.  Once a year we come together at “Cattleman’s Days” as a community of locals and visitors to see the skilled entertainment of our local cowboys and cowgirls.   While this is a week of viewing prize winning 4-H animals to the Friday night “Tough Enough to Wear Pink” rodeo,and culminated with the Cattleman’s Day Parade,  none of this minimizes the tough life of ranching.  The ranching legacy started over 100 years ago in Gunnison County.  The warm sunshine and the cool nights sets the stage for the rich hay crop grown on the ranches.  The number of working ranches have declined over the years and the conservation of ranchland has served to protect ranching and preserve much of our wide open pasture land.

It might be appropriate to say it’s a guessing game or a gut feeling for a rancher as to the right moment to cut the hay crop and how long to let it dry before putting it up.  It is a respect for the land and mother nature that reminds us how delicate a process ranching can be.  The sight of rolled hay bales dotting the pastures are an element of beauty that adds to the landscape.

In the Spring, it always brings a smile to see the ranches littered with new baby calfs and their protective mama’s.  If you are into eating locally raised beef you can buy it directly from the ranches who sell to the public.

Watch out!  It’s not uncommon to be caught in a cattle drive while driving.  If so, just roll down your window and enjoy the moment.