In 1892 a stocky Danish immigrant named Magnus Jensen rode into south-central Montana. He liked what he saw and staked his future on the ranch he would carve out there. Today, Dan Aadland and his wife, Emily, live on the ranch built by Jensen, Emily's grandfather. More than a century has passed, but the nature of ranching in Montana is little changed. Sensitive to the timelessness of the land, author Aadland approaches his ranching life as Thoreau approached life at Walden Pond. In Sketches from the Ranch, Aadland brings ranching to life within the framework of one recent year. In simple but moving prose, he evokes the harsh beauty of the West, writing with as much elegance about breaking a colt as he does about the inner lives of cattle, the way his pickup handles in the sw, or how the relationship between a man and his horse often defines a good day on the ranch. Beautifully illustrated and lovingly told, Sketches from the Ranch bears poetic witness to the myth and reality that are the West.
Dan Aadland is a former teacher who ranches and breeds horses near Absarokee, Montana. He is the author of seven books, including The Best of All Seasons: Fifty Years as a Montana Hunter (Nebraska 2007) and The Complete Trail Horse: Selecting, Training, and Enjoying Your Horse in the Backcountry.