Milton Ranch

Eight-Month Cattle Ranching Apprenticeship in Roundup, Montana

Milton Ranch, a family owned and operated business, lies within the Musselshell Watershed in central Montana. Though not always in the same place, the Milton Family has been involved in ranching since 1956. The home ranch is mostly a grass-based enterprise applying a holistic management approach since the mid-eighties. The home ranch supports about 450 cows. We partner with a ranch in Nebraska-Wyoming to manage our yearling grass cattle, and first calf heifers (around 130 animals) We also are members of Country Natural Beef Coop, who market our cattle that are finished in Merino, Colorado.

Meet the mentors


Milton Ranch

*Please check back soon for more detailed information about the Milton apprenticeship opportunity. 

Our Ranching Philosophy:

We practice regeneration on the ground and we practice regeneration with people. The ranch itself applies a fairly aggressive approach to time controlled and high stock density grazing practice involving frequent moves to optimize plant rest and soil cover impact. The ranch has monitored for many years in cooperation with BLM, FWPs, and NRCS using a third party consultant. Bill has been involved for three years with an effort (Rangeland Monitoring Group Project) to formalize a community-based approach to land health monitoring that involves ranchers, professionals, agencies, NGOs, and Montana State University.

An apprentice would be involved in all phases of the ranch operation including the ranch planning team, finance, genetics, grass and grazing management, monitoring, marketing, garden, and government, NGOs, and community relations. Bill actively facilitates and participates in a number of community-based landscape collaborative efforts, and an apprentice would be encouraged to participate in these various circles. 

The Mentors

Bill Milton  – check back soon for more information about Bill. 


Start Date: April 2020 

Length of Apprenticeship: 6 – 8 months 

Stipend:  $1,000/month

Housing: The Milton Ranch is currently working on appropriate housing for an apprentice.

Quivira Coalition Activities: This apprenticeship is offered through Quivira Coalition’s New Agrarian Program.  The full cohort of apprentices on regenerative ranches and farms across the west will attend an April orientation, participate in supplemental education provided in partnership with Holistic Management International, and attend the annual Quivira Conference, hosted with Holistic Management International and the American Grassfed Association, in November.  Apprentices are also required to write several reports during their apprenticeship; these reports will go through the NAP Coordinator at Quivira, and be posted on the Quivira website.

Pets: Yes, as long as the animals are well managed and controlled. Dogs/cats/horses. 

Tobacco and Alcohol policy: Ranch housing and enclosed work spaces are all smoke free. Legal and appropriate alcohol use is ok outside of work hours. Smoking is not allowed inbuildings, and very regulated on the ranch. No one currently smokes on the ranch.

Health insurance: The ranching lifestyle has inherent dangers. While personal health insurance is not required to participate in the apprenticeship program, it is strongly encouraged. The farm carries Workman’s Compensation to cover injuries incurred on the job. But if the apprentice is injured on his or her day off, gets sick, or has or develops chronic conditions like allergies, these types of issues should be covered by personal health insurance.

Personal vehicle: While apprentices will not be asked to use a personal vehicle for work purposes, the apprentice will need the flexibility of his or her own vehicle on their days off in order to run personal errands such as purchasing groceries and for travel.  


Applications for the Milton Ranch will be open October 15 – December 1, 2019.