By Tom Dixon, Senior Communications Specialist

A stone cistern and evidence of a potato cellar are all that remain of the Fales homestead near Deaver, Wyoming.

David Fales frequently walks the 87 acres his great-grandparents once called home. Heart Mountain dominates the landscape to the east. Sometimes, he comes across rusty old tools his ancestors used to work the land a century ago.

The Fales family came from Missouri on the heels of the Buffalo Bill Dam project, which opened this part of northwest Wyoming to farming and ranching.

“They came out here with nothing. No roads, no telephones,” Fales said. “Nothing but a patch of land, and they had to build it all from scratch.”

Fales sat in his office about an hour from the old homestead on a recent January day. Outside, a foot of snow blanketed the parking lot, reminding him of pre-dawn days spent cracking the ice in the cows’ water trough so the animals could drink.

Family history is paramount to this son of a rancher. From a young age, he dreamed of working with Wyoming Angus beef. Today, he is on a mission to introduce the state’s high-quality meat to the world.

Fales has also built a livelihood from scratch. Cody-based Wyoming Authentic Products, the state’s only U.S. Department of Agriculture-approved beef processing facility, produces many beef products, including the 1.3 million beef sticks made in 2016.

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