Cameron & David King
King Ranch is a Family operation with deep roots going back 5 generations to the plains of West Texas. The King Homestead in Tulelake, California, started mainly in farming in 1949, but had some cattle as well. In the mid ‘50s Frank King also operated the Ore Cal feedlot in nearby Malin, Oregon for Safeway. He managed that facility for 20 years. About 1985 His son David King joined the ranch and grew the farming operation and raised Alfalfa, Hay and Sugar Beets. Currently the farm grows over 3000 acres in hay, and the ranch has added properties in Canby, California and Klamath, Oregon.
Grandson Cameron King takes great pride in continuing a family tradition that extends back 5 generations to the plains of West Texas. “My family has always been in ranching. Great Grandpa Frank L. King Sr.’s mother was born in a rock hut on a ranch in the middle of the West Texas desert that is still owned by family. Our family feels very strongly about the heritage that we have in ranching and the legacy to our family name. I live in the original house that my grandfather bought, and I hope that the new places that we have added will be a place that my kids will live in one day.”
Cameron also feels a great responsibility to the animals he raises. “We try to make things as comfortable for our cattle as possible. Their health is a real concern. We keep our first year animals close to home, and the second year turn them out to the mountain.”
At the suggestion of longtime friend, and member of Country Natural Beef Gerta Hyde, King ranch recently joined CNB. “Grandpa King and Gerta were friends while students at UC Davis, and he always had such high respect for her.” The values and goals of CNB and the King family came into alignment at a time when many ranchers tend to be driven by the bottom line. “The end game of CNB I’ve felt is to make the customer happy. Typical western ranchers have different goals.” Said Cameron. “The networking opportunities are tremendous, and I love the collaborative thought process.”
Horses are an important part of the story at King Ranch. With three different properties spread over 100 miles and 2 states and a mixture of farm land, scenic pastures, and rugged mountainous terrain, horses have been vital to manage the growing herd. But horses are nothing new to the King family. While living in Lafayette, California, Great Grandpa Frank L. King Sr. operated a ranch of horses and some cattle. He and a friend, Dr. WE Castle, a veterinarian shared an interest in equine bloodlines. The two successfully teamed up to develop a genetically pure Palomino stud horse named “Algiers.”
Today, the Ranch is still a family affair. Grandpa Frank provides wisdom and advice when needed. He and his wife Ginger live in Klamath Falls. David is President of the operation. Cameron’s mom Robin lends a hand where needed. Cameron is Farm and livestock Manager. Younger sister Whitney handles the finances and older sister Angie lives in California.