Third-generation Montana ranch manager Rich Roth doesn't only prepare for the next year's calf or hay crop. He plans for a future when the 167-year-old IX Ranch has new ownership.
The radio in Rich Roth's hand crackles to life, breaking the tranquility of the pre-dawn Montana morning. The muffled voice coming through the speaker says just three words: "Bring them on."
Warrick Road is clear of traffic; the fence that usually keeps cattle off the road has been taken down.