hairpin ranch

The Minors, a legendary rodeo family, have called Kittitas County home since the 1930s. The Minors, Forterra, and Kittitas County placed a working land conservation easement on Hairpin Ranch in 2020. The easement allows the Minor family to keep their property as working land – no matter the owner.
Hairpin ranch’s 274-acres sits just north of Ellensburg, in a target suburban development zone. Like many ranching families today, the Minors faced the challenge of maintaining their land. Choosing to create a working land conservation easement that would allow them to keep their land and continue ranching instead of selling off pieces to a developer.

conservation easements

Conservation easements are voluntary legal agreements between a landowner and Forterra, permanently limiting uses of the land to protect its conservation values. Forterra works to ensure the land is protected in perpetuity – regardless of ownership changes. Forterra staff monitor each easement annually, enforce the easement terms and provide counsel to landowners to ensure they understand their responsibilities.
Hairpin Ranch Conservation Forterra
Forterra works with interested landowners to determine the best plan for the future of their land. We worked with the Minors for several years to support the creation of a working land conservation easement. Hairpin Ranch’s thriving ecosystem, healthy soils, and easy access to market make it an important working ranch to conserve.


Conserved 274 acres of working land north of Ellensburg through a conservation easement on Hairpin Ranch. The easement allows the property to remain working land – no matter the owner.


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