Established in 1881 by A.W. and Anna Louise Salisbury near the confluence of the Little Snake River and Battle Creek, Ladder Ranch has been home to six generations, raising cattle since the 1920s.
Sharon Salisbury O’Toole grew up on the ranch and now runs the balanced cattle and sheep operation with her husband Pat, son Eamon, daughter Meghan and their spouses. Daughter Bridget and her husband help with marketing. The family also raises Quarter Horses, Border collies and livestock guardian dogs, and operates a ranch recreation business.
Conservation stewardship has always been important to the family, beginning with a rotational grazing system using private and public lands in the 1950s.
The O’Toole’s have implemented beneficial river projects with Wyoming Game and Fish, Little Snake River Conservation District and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Partners Program. These integrate the fishery and the irrigation system. The O’Tooles also work to protect and enhance habitat for Greater sage grouse and Columbian sharp-tailed grouse. The ranch is home to a Wyoming Audubon Important Bird Area and provides critical winter range to deer and elk. In recent years, antelope migrate to their high country pastures. With a goal of giving future generations an opportunity to work the land and protect their beloved landscape and its wild and domestic inhabitants, the O’Tooles are involved in their community. They are proud to promote conservation values in Wyoming and beyond.