“In 1860, my great-great grandparents homesteaded just a mile up the road here,” explains JD Hamm, fifth-generation owner and operator of the Montana Cow Company.
Father and son, Cliff and JD, landowners of the Montana Cow Company.
For JD and his father, Cliff Hamm, running the Montana Cow Company has been in the family for over a century and a half. Located just outside of Bozeman, MT, the property is comprised of 260 acres of river bottom in the Bridger Canyon. With pastures on both sides of the river, thick woods surrounding the water, and meadows bordering 71,000 acres of National Forest, the land provides exceptional habitat for whitetail and late season elk.
The Montana Cow Company hunting grounds.
JD learned about LandTrust through a friend and was curious about the service considering they had always let people hunt. “Before, some Joe-blow would show up asking if he could take his kid up hunting,” JD states. “Before long, I’d go out and have three people up there and have no idea who they are.”
The Montana Cow Company hunting camp.
Although JD’s father was skeptical at first, Cliff has been amazed at how it’s taken off. “It’s made it easier for us as far as not having to worry about the liability… and the extra income has helped a lot in paying for the new fencing.”
Cliff working in close collaboration with the LandTrust team.
JD explains that he really likes how easy and convenient it is to handle the service when it’s all based online. “I can be out feeding cows, fixing a fence, or doing something. If I have someone who wants to book something it takes 30 seconds and then I can get back to my day.”
JD checking his bookings from the field.
Cliff is really pleased with how respectful the sportsmen have been when accessing the ranch. “We’ve never had an issue with anybody being a bad steward to the land.” Knowing who and when sportsmen are hunting on the property keeps the landowner in complete control of the service.
Not only does the service provide a little bit of extra income for any family-run operation, it also assists in controlling the wildlife habitat. Cliff states, “I definitely recommend it to anyone who has a family ranch and has maybe too many critters on it that they need to harvest. Wildlife will keep producing and if you don’t control that then they get disease and die out.”