Sunfire Ranch: Whole Farm Land Management Workshop
September 7-8 & October 5-7, 2018
This workshop series is ideal for large & small acreages, new & seasoned producers. Learn to manage the holistic way to improve your land, quality of life, and your bottom line. As a farmer, rancher, or land manager, one of your greatest assets is the land you work with. Managing land is tough given weather conditions, environmental pressure & input costs. The aim of this workshop is to help you manage land through the practice of Holistic Management for better soil health, biodiversity, productivity & profitability.
What to Expect
You will leave this hands-on course with:
- Clear goals and improved decision-making skills
- Strategies for managing your natural resources for sustainability
- Enhanced ability to observe, evaluate and monitor land health
- A completed Holistic Management® Grazing Plan
- Land planning strategies for infrastructure, fencing, water, crops etc.
- Better understanding of the local Sagebrush Ecosystem and how to manage for improved livestock and wildlife productivity
- A network of fellow learners
First Session – September 7-8, 2018
- Whole Farm & Ranch Planning Basics – for all sizes and types of operations
- Holistic Decision-making, Goal Setting and Planning skills
- Eco-Literacy: Observing and Evaluating Land Health
- Achieving Your Best Possible Outcomes with Tools of Management
Special Evening Session September 7th
Understanding the Sagebrush Ecosystem and Sage Grouse (ground-nesting bird) habitat as it applies to ranchers
Second Session – October 5-7, 2018
- Putting Holistic Management® Grazing Planning into Practice
- Implementing Early Warning Biological Monitoring
- Developing Holistic Management® Land Planning Strategies
Early Registration Discount! Register by August 1st for only $350. Regular registration of $400 closes September 5, 2018. Lunch each day is included in your ticket and provided by Green Fields.
Optional Dinners: Sept 7th and Oct 5th at the ranch at $35/person/night.
Nearly 100% sourced from the ranch – meats, produce, etc. Local, fresh, high-quality foods!! Dinners will be BYOB – We encourage you to bring your own homemade beverages to share, or any specialty drinks from your local area: Kombuchas, micro-brews, local winery offerings, etc.
Eligible for Scholarships (click for more information and application).
Hotels, Lodging & Meals:
Lunch each day, locally sourced and seasonal, will be provided by The Guest House.
There will be an option, at an extra cost, for shared meals on the evenings between class days. This is highly encouraged to allow additional time for discussion and sharing knowledge, experiences, and quality, farm-fresh food!
Camping is available on the ranch. Please contact Connor at [email protected] if interested.
There are hotels 5 minutes away in Carbondale: https://www.carbondale.com/visit/lodging/
6333 Hwy 133, Carbondale, CO 81623
From the north (Carbondale): The ranch is located 5.2 miles from the only roundabout on CO Hwy 133 in Carbondale. Also 6.2 miles from the intersection of CO-82 and CO-133. The driveway will be on the right immediately past Sustainable Settings and Thompson Creek.***cell service starts to taper out just before the ranch***
From the south (Paonia): The ranch is approximately 20 miles north of McClure Pass on CO Hwy 133. The driveway will be on the left.***there is no cell service or gas stations between Paonia and the ranch (53 miles)***
Cindy Dvergsten, HMI Certified Educator and Owner of Whole New Concepts, LLC
Cindy has practiced Holistic Management since 1993 and has been a Certified Educator since 1995. She serves as a business management consultant with the local Small Business Development Center. She has worked with new and beginning farmers, local food systems, Native Americans, and non-profits facilitating learning in natural resource management, community and organizational development, business planning and enterprise development, marketing, facilitation and consensus-building, land health and biological monitoring, irrigation water management, and rare breed conservation. She has been a lifelong farmer with experience raising sheep, beef, poultry, fruits and vegetables, grass-fed production, pasture, and hay. She holds a degree in Natural Resource Management and Soil Science from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point.
Retta A. Bruegger, Regional Specialist in Range Management Western Colorado, Colorado State University
Retta works closely with Extension agents, agencies, ranchers, and others to build ecological and social resilience on western rangelands. Originally from the mountains of central Colorado, Retta became interested in pursuing rangeland management as a career after living and working in Mongolia as a Fulbright Student Scholar in 2005-2006. Since then, Retta has completed her MS in ecology and management of rangelands from the University of Arizona (2012), returned to Mongolia to work with herders and researchers as part of the Mongolian Rangelands and Resilience Project, and facilitated a rancher–led study in Northwestern Colorado on managing sage-grouse habitat (2013-2016).
Terri Schulz, Senior Conservation Ecologist, The Nature Conservancy
Terri Schulz has worked for Colorado Nature Conservancy for 25 years and is currently a Senior Conservation Ecologist. Terri earned a B.S. in Wildlife Biology and an M.S. in Range Ecology from Colorado State University. She leads large-scale conservation planning efforts and has trained partners in the Rocky Mountains as well as in Thailand, Kenya, Mongolia, China, and India. Terri also serves in a leadership role as a conservation coach franchise lead and on the executive board for the Conservation Coaches Network. In addition to planning, Terri is a science leader for management decisions on TNC properties and Conservation Easement projects and the Sustainable Grazing Lands Program for Colorado Nature Conservancy.
Thank you to the generous support of Martha Records and Rich Rainaldi in making this day possible.
Thanks also to the Grasslans Charitable Foundation for their support.
Our collaborators who provide in-kind resources and outreach help include:
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