Friday, January 1, 2016

Spring Valley Ranch adds brand to ICA Brand Wall

In 1967 W.L. Miller & his family moved from Cedar Falls, Iowa to the ranch nestled in the hills and valleys of northeast Iowa. It is at this location where W.L. observed the many springs as well as the creek that ran through the property of which the ranch earned its name Spring Valley. The classic "S" inside a tailed "V" distinguishes the geography of the ranch. Since its inception, the brand has been used on the beef cattle and horses. This has been the ranch's business card of producing quality animals and protecting our livestock from rustling. The brand's unique nature makes it difficult to change. The ranch has, over the years, earned recognition on a state and national level for its contributions to the horse and cattle industries. The ranch was also featured in photos in the April 1989 Iowa Visitors Guide (pgs. 53 & 54).

The brand and the legacy that has sprung from the ranch has a rich history of cattle and horses; W.L. brought some of the first registered paint and quarter horses to the state of Iowa. W.L. put those good horses to work with his blended beef cow/calf operation. In its hey day he had 300 head of mothers and operated over 1200 acres. 

Today, Matt & Cassie (W.L.'s granddaughter) have brought back an Angus/Sim-Angus cow/calf operation on a smaller scale, starting in the early 2000's. "Utilizing NRCS Environmental Quality Incentives Program monies, we have developed a 60 acre rotational grazing pasture which has enhanced and eased the stress on pastures during the dog days of summer. We provide calves to a private feed yard while retaining a few heifers each year. Our approach to producing efficient cattle utilizes hearty, western bred commercial cows on registered Angus or Simmental bulls with a emphasis on low birth weights, docility and competitive rate of gain. We also utilize our working horse program to gather, check/doctor and sort cattle. Their intelligence, athleticism and cow sense make great partners out in the pasture."

Matt and Cassie joined 10 other families and businesses who added their brands to the ICA Brand Wall at the 2015 Iowa Cattle Industry Convention. Brand wall members contribute $1000 to ICA in order to display their brand. (See the full list of 11 Brand Wall additions here.) 

Matt was part of the 2015 class of Young Cattlemen's Leadership Program in addition to being appointed to the Iowa Livestock Health Advisory Board. Cassie is the 4th generation in her family in the agriculture industry while Matt is 5th generation cattlemen; it is with a rich history such as this that it was only fitting to put the brand on the brand wall at ICA. 

"We are thrilled to be part of ICA and the work that it does. We look forward to engaging the next generation of Winters' into the cattle, horse and agriculture industries, adding to the story of Spring Valley Ranch."

Matt & Cassie Winters
Spring Valley Ranch
Spring Valley Ranch on Facebook

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