The Sunday Edition·sunday edition

Home on the ranch? A cattlewoman has a big decision to make

Haley Rutherford is a determined young woman with callused hands, whose family has been in the cattle ranching business for generations. But now she must decide whether she's cut out to take the reins at the 3000-acre Lazy L. Ranch in British Columbia. Jennifer Chrumka's documentary is called, "The Rate a Heart Can Beat."
Haley Rutherford in one of the pastures of her family's sprawling ranch near Merritt, B.C. Haley is trying to decide whether to take over the business. (Jennifer Chrumka)

Lots of people can be cowboys, the saying goes.

But few can be cattlemen.

Take a fraction of that, and you have the women.

Haley Rutherford comes from a line of tough and determined ones. She's 33 now, and in the throes of making a decision about whether to take over what her grandmother began.

The ranch in question is called the Lazy L. Not far from Kamloops, in the BC interior, it's sprawling, windy and high elevation, so that even in the summer you can see the snowy peaks of the coastal mountains. If it's going to survive, it's up to Haley to take the reins. 

Today, Haley runs 400 head of cattle on the land her family owns - over 3000 deeded acre. On the Lazy L, and on many other ranches, the question of succession is very much in the air.  

 "The Rate A Heart Can Beat" was produced by Jennifer Chrumka. It was first broadcast in September 2016.
Haley Rutherford moves cattle to a new grazing pasture at the Lazy L Ranch. (Jennifer Chrumka)

Click 'listen' above to hear the documentary. 


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