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When seeing the name 6666 Ranch, your mind probably jumps to the hit series Yellowstone (2018- ).
The neo-western drama follows the lives of the Duttons, a powerful ranching family in Montana who own Yellowstone Dutton Ranch, a ranch the size of Rhode Island.
The historic Four Sixes ranch was also featured in Season 4 of Yellowstone when John Dutton sends Jimmy Hurdstram to Texas to become a real cowboy.
Along with its role in Yellowstone, 6666 Ranch will also serve as the main filming location for the upcoming spinoff series, 6666.
However, there is another way the large West Texas ranch is connected to Yellowstone.
Who Bought the 6666 Ranch?
Taylor Sheridan and an investor group bought 6666 Ranch in May 2021 for around $341.7 million. The Four Sixes Ranch is a real ranch that functions as a filming location for Yellowstone and also as a working cattle and horse breeding farm.
According to NBCDFW, the announcement that the ranch was sold in its entirety was made by Taylor Sheridan’s representatives, Don Bell and the late Milt Bradford. In a press release about the sale, Bell also disclosed:
“From the brand itself to the multifaceted operations and assets, the new owners understand this more holistic view of this historic ranch and are committed to keeping it intact and preserving its legacy.”
Thanks to Taylor Sheridan’s background in ranching and passion for the craft, the Four Sixes will continue its legacy in producing the country’s finest Angus cattle and Quarter Horses.
How Many Acres Is the 6666 Ranch in Texas?
Located in North Texas, 6666 Ranch is 266,000 acres in size and spans four counties, making it one of the largest ranches in the state. The ranch comprises two larger sections in King County, Carson, and Hutchison a smaller section in Sherman County.
Also referred to as the 4 Sixes Ranch or 4 6s Ranch, the Four Sixes Ranch is about three hours’ drive from Fort Worth, where Taylor Sheridan graduated high school. Its main section (142,000 acres) is found near the town of Guthrie in King County.
The other large section (114,455 acres) called Dixon Creek Ranch is located in Carson and Hutchison counties.
Finally, the smallest section (9,428 acres) by the name of Frisco Creek Ranch is in Sherman County, Texas.
According to Chas S. Middleton and Son LLC who handled the sale of the 6666 Ranch, the property is nearly 225 square miles in size. It measures around 20 miles from north to south and 12 miles from east to west.
Remarkably, some of the original buildings still stand on the property, including a 1917 home that once welcomed President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Quanah Parker, and Will Rogers.
The iconic red barn with the 6666 logo, however, has been moved to the National Ranching Heritage Center in Lubbock, Texas.
Also read: Is Yellowstone Based on a True Story?
Four Sixes Ranch Facilities
The iconic Four Sixes Ranch has no shortage of luxurious facilities to ensure the smooth running of the ranch.
There are twenty employee houses and two bunkhouses that provide accommodation for full-time and seasonal staff. There are usually 50 to 100 employees working on the ranch, of which around 20 are full-time cowboys.
Surveilling a ranch of this size is no easy task and is normally done from the air. Hence why the 6666 Ranch has its own airplane hangar and private landing strip for the convenience of the owner.
Being located in the southernmost state of the US also means water is scarce on the property. To counter this issue, the 6666 Ranch has a high-tech water filtration plant so its inhabitants can always have access to clean water.
What’s more, the ranch also offers a range of veterinary and reproductive services such as:
- Lameness evaluation
- Diagnostic imaging
- General medicine
- Preventive care
The 6666 Ranch main house is a charming Texas-style stone building with luxurious interiors. The home features a staggering 13 bedrooms, 13 bathrooms, 3 powder rooms, 2 kitchens, a dining room, and 3 fireplaces.
The main 6666 Ranch is located near the Guthrie community in King County, Texas, 93 miles east of Lubbock. You can reach the Four Sixes Ranch via Highways 82 and 83 which run straight through the property.
The very center of the ranch is where the main house and facilities are.
Here is Google Maps embed of where the ranch is:
Also, read our guide to all the Yellowstone filming locations.
6666 Ranch History
The legendary 6666 Ranch was founded in 1870 by Samuel Burk Burnett on land he purchased from the Louisville Land and Cattle Company.
In the past, there have been rumors saying Burnett won the ranch scoring four sixes in a poker game. However, he and his descendants have denied this tale repeatedly.
Instead, the actual origin story of the name is that it came from the first 100 cattle Burnett purchased for his ranch. Previously owned by Frank Crowley of Denton, Texas, each animal in the herd was branded “6666”.
Throughout his life, Burnett produced high-quality Durham and Hereford bulls on the ranch that even brought home national prizes. However, cattle wasn’t his only passion, as he also bred pure Quarter Horses.
Unfortunately, the ranch suffered a financial setback in 1918, when a blizzard killed off 2,000 cattle. However, things took a turn for the better in 1921 when oil was found on the ranch, turning it into a highly profitable business.
Here is an official 6666 Ranch history video:
Past Owners of the 6666 Ranch
After Burnett passed away in 1920, his granddaughter Anne Valliant Burnett Tandy inherited the ranch. She continued the family business by buying show horses and raising the number of Hereford cattle to 20,000 by 1936.
Fast forward to 1980, the ranch passed to Tandy’s great-granddaughter, Anne Windfohr Marion, and her daughter, Wendi Grimes.
Together with her fourth husband, John L. Marion, Anne crossbred Herefords with Brangus cattle to produce the Balck Baldy, a breed that’s resistant to cedar flies.
Horse breeding also continued on the great Texas ranch. Around a hundred Quarter Horse mares were bred each year to some of the best sires in the country and producing high-quality foals.
After 150 years of Burnett ownership, the Four Sixes Ranch went up for sale on December 3, 2020, following the death of Anne Burnett Marion.
In her will, Marion wrote of the future she envisioned for the 6666 Ranch, which the current owners are proudly adhering to.
Legendary Quarter Horses and Superior Angus Cattle
According to their website, these are the hallmarks of the Four Sixes brand. The ranch is fortunate enough to have both the state-of-the-art equipment and the expert team necessary to maintain the high production standards the Four Sixes Ranch is known for.
The 6666 Ranch is home to some of the best Quarter Horse broodmares and stallions nationwide. Their homebred stock consistently achieves top results in racing and western events and is sold at premier auctions across the country.
The success of the Four Sixes Quarter Horse breeding program has been recognized with an AQHA Best Remuda Award. Moreover, the brand has also received an AQHA All-Time Leading Breeder of Performance Horses, Race Money-Earners, and Winners title.
“Our goal with these ranch horses is to produce the world’s best ranch horse,” says resident veterinarian Dr. Glenn Blodgett. “The horse here is the vital component of our everyday operation of the ranch from gathering the cows to sorting the calves and calf branding time.“
For the last century and a half, the focus of the Four Sixes Ranch has been to manage the land and preserve its resources to enable premium beef cattle production.
The ranch’s breeding program uses a mix of tried and tested practices, experience, and modern innovation to achieve success.
After 100 years of predominantly breeding Hereford cattle, the ranch has transitioned to Angus cattle in recent years. The main reason for this is to ultimately produce higher quality beef to customers.
The 4 6’s Ranch still brands its cattle with four sixes over the ribs, staying true to its legacy. Moreover, the year of the calf’s birth is branded on the left hip and the letter “L” on the left shoulder if the animal was an outside purchase.
Also read: 35 Best Yellowstone Quotes
How Many Cattle Does the 6666 Ranch Have?
At full capacity, the 6666 Ranch has approximately 6,000-7,000 Angus cattle. The animals have access to 119 different pastures that offer anywhere from a few hundred to 16,000 acres of grazing, depending on the season.
The Four Sixes Ranch team is dedicated to preserving natural resources and reclaiming as much land as possible for native grasses. Hence, they limit the stocking rate to about 30 acres per cow/calf pair. This minimized the negative effects of droughts on livestock and ensures good welfare for the animals.
Also, take our fun Yellowstone quiz only true fans can complete!
Taylor Sheridan’s Ranch on Yellowstone and Spin-Off Series
Given the 6666 Ranch’s significance in the history of the American West, Sheridan couldn’t have chosen a better place to feature in Yellowstone Season 4. The first scenes were filmed on the Four Sixes in October 2020, more than a year before Sheridan himself came to own the ranch.
In the show, the 6666 Ranch is where the world’s best cowboys and ranch horses are made. No wonder John Dutton chooses to send his most hopeless hand Jimmy here in the hope that he’ll finally master the craft.
Also read: What Happened to Jimmy on Yellowstone?
What’s more, the legacy of the 6666 Ranch resonates with Sheridan’s show so much that he even wrote an entire spinoff series titled 6666. The show is currently in the development stage and will premiere sometime in 2023.
While we don’t know much about the storylines of 6666 yet, it’s likely the show will feature the lives of Jimmy (Jefferson White) and Emily (Kathryn Kelly) on the ranch.
There are also rumors that Ryan Bingham who plays Yellowstone ranch hand Walker might be relocating to Texas, but we’ll just have to wait and see.