I can’t imagine a better ending to this field trip than the Barnitz family.
I come from a rural area and an agricultural family, but it is easy to forget that there are people out there who really care about the land and the industry. As Frank stood in the tall grass amidst the incessantly mooing cows, he didn’t even have to tell us that this was more than a source of income. It was clear from the three generations of passionate cattle ranchers standing before us that this was a lifestyle that means a lot to a lot of people.
The entire time, I couldn’t help but think of a dear friend of mine from home. That boy loved farming with all his heart. He was one of the few members of my generation that really cared about being a good farmer and being a good steward of the land for his community and for future generations.
The human connection my friend had and the Barnitz family has with nature is what drives me more than any spring or any elk. It is because the land is so important to real people and real families that I have a desire to tell its story.