Six Mile Ranch Overview
The Six Mile Ranch is located in the rolling hills and grassland region of southern Saskatchewan near the Canada-Montana, USA border. The ranch currently operates on 96 quarters (11,000 acres) of pasture land.
Six Mile ranch is owned and operated by Clayton and Corinne Gibson and son-in-law and daughter, Tyson and Callie Hertz. Clayton and Corinne’s boys, Cade and Coy both play active roles at the ranch during busy times. Each member of the family is an integral part of the ranch. Clayton’s grandparents, Ken and Roberta Frazer, were the founders of Six Mile Red Angus and their legacy and eye for quality cattle lives on in the Six Mile cow herd.
The ranch has had the good fortune to have longtime employee Walter Wall and his wife, Rosemary, with us since 1995. Working side by side with Clayton and Walter is Tyson Hertz and Matt Criddle. Both Tyson and Matt are hard working young cattlemen that help with the day to day operations at Six Mile
Six Mile Ranch began as nothing more than a dream for newlyweds Ken and Roberta Frazer. In 1949, they traded every cow they had, except the milk cow, to purchase the original ranch property south of what is now Six Mile Ranch. In 1954, with the help of Ken’s previous employer, they were able to purchase land which is now the headquarters of Six Mile. In those beginning years Ken & Roberta ran a herd of commercial cattle with Ken buying cattle as a drover and working long, hard hours to make a living.
In the late 1960’s the cow herd was predominantly of Hereford breeding. Ken had tried many different breeds of cattle, but was still looking for one that fit into his environment and management practices. Ken & Birdie drove 10,000 miles and looked at 10,000 different cattle before deciding on Red Angus. In 1967 they purchased 4 Red Angus Bulls from Beckton Stock Farm in Sheridan, Wyoming. They were so pleased with the cross and the efficiency of the Red Angus cattle that in 1970 Ken & Roberta decided to become one of Saskatchewan’s first Purebred Red Angus Breeders. Their motto “To Produce Cattle that are Born Easy, with the Will to Live, the Ability to Grow and the Quality to Sell”. The purebred operation grew from there holding its first Bull and Female Sales in 1975. Ken and Roberta worked diligently to bring the Red Angus breed into mainstream acceptance. They faced many critics in the cattle industry but never wavered from their original goal and their belief in the Red Angus breed. The dominance of the breed today is a direct result of the hard work of those few breeders in the beginning.
Unfortunately, in 1982 Ken’s health began to interfere with the workload so Ken & Roberta decided to start putting cattle out on a share basis, enabling them to help many young people become involved in the Red Angus Breed. At one time in the 90’s Ken & Birdie had over 1000 purebred cows on shares spread throughout the prairie provinces.
In the fall of 1990, Clayton and Corinne Gibson moved home to the ranch and shortly after, they took over the reins of the purebred operation. As the Six Mile herd had been largely dispersed due to Ken’s health issues, Clayton and Corinne built their new herd from the existing group of females and by bringing home the best cows they could from the share herds. They focused on a couple areas at the time:
- Cattle performance and production records aided in the strict culling process for the herd with structural and maternal superiority the number one objective for herd development.
- A mission to build strong customer relations believing that customer input and satisfaction was a very important building block.
Clayton and Corinne felt that it took about 10 years to work out the kinks and develop the herd that today they are very proud of.
The ‘Six Mile’ Name
Six Mile ranch got its name from the Six Mile Creek Crossing which runs through the ranch. The crossing is exactly six miles from the North West Mounted Police Post at Wood Mountain on the trail to Fort Walsh. This is the NWMP post that policed the last stand of the Sioux Chief “Sitting Bull”.