- ABOUT US -
Killpecker Creek Cattle Company is located in the foothills of the Wyoming Range, where the sagebrush plains meet the soaring mountains and pine trees reach toward the open skies. Lush grasses blanket the meadows while Cottonwood Creek and Killpecker Creek provide ample feed and water for a growing herd of Galloway cattle that are being raised by Jason Rife, a chemistry professor, and Sonja, a former ballerina/biologist.
Our decision to leave the east coast and raise our family in the fresh air and wide-open spaces, combined with a passion for interesting, scientific-based work lead us to purchase 1,100 acres in Daniel, Wyoming in 2013 and begin ranching from a scientific background.
Jason grew up in a family restaurant in Melbourne, FL before getting his Ph.D. in chemistry, while Sonja grew up in the D.C. area as an aspiring ballerina before settling into a BS in biology. Using Jason’s Ph.D. in chemistry and Sonja’s BS in biology, along with our love of good food and home cooking, we raise grass-finished, no-antibiotic, no-hormone beef that we are proud to serve at our table and offer to our community.
“Really?” one might ask, “Galloway cattle in Wyoming?” Yes, it’s an unusual choice in a country known for producing Angus and Hereford cattle. And in truth, the decision to raise Galloways did begin as a joke. “You should run those striped Scottish things since our mom’s family is Scottish,” said Jason’s brother, upon hearing of our decision to move to Wyoming and begin ranching. Turns out he was right though, Galloways belted and in other coat patterns, are an exceptionally sensible breed for Wyoming’s high altitude, rough forage, and long winters. Galloway’s double coat of hair, natural foraging strength, and strong, short bodies bring them through Wyoming’s winters healthy and strong. Galloways are thought by many to be the first domesticated beef breed of cattle and are considered a heritage breed. Unaltered by genetic leanings towards corn and grain finishing, the primitive Galloways finish uncommonly well on grass.
Approximately one-half of our ranch is conserved under easement to the Jackson Hole Land Trust. The entire ranch is managed through restorative agriculture practices: managed grazing, soil health improvement through vibrant soil biome communities, stream bank preservation, wildlife-friendly fencing, plant species diversification, and native species propagation.
We are proud of our beef, ranch, and vocation. Never hesitate to contact either Jason or Sonja for a tour, we’d love to show you around the happiest cows in Wyoming!
- PARTNERS AND COLLABORATORS -
Sonja sits on the board of the Jackson Hole Land Trust as well as on the JHLT Green River Valley Program advisory committee.