Our ranch house was never finished, it is a dream that remains incomplete. Construction began in the late 80’s but money problems hindered us from ever finishing it. Luckily my grand parents have a small home in Parowan, Utah. I live in Cedar City, and work for them part time. The ranch has the silence of a ghost town and the building itself is aging slowly. All around lay huge piles of Alabaster that we’ve collected and hauled in over the years. Native artisans from all over the Southwest travel to our stone yard to buy or trade for Alabaster carving stone. It is located near the town of Summit, Utah; between Cedar City, and Parowan. If you are traveling down I-15 and approach the Summit exit, look for a cinder pit mine to the south on the mountain, right below is the ranch. You’ll see all the rocks! It is not a business where we’ve made the greatest living. We have struggled like most other folks. In the winter months, life grows difficult with no customers coming for several months at a time. The Alabaster has allowed us to survive, though. There is something associated with the stone that adds to the silence. In the hills that surround our little ranch lays ancient ruins, rock art sites, scattered fire pits, and so many other things. All of Iron County seems entrenched in those ancient remnants!
By default, we like to call our retreat; Meadowlark Ranch, because of all the birds that congregate there. My grandfather emulates the meadowlark and sings, Summit… is a pretty little place! We have a 78 acre piece of land with a meadow to the east end of the property. Mule Deer gather in fall and winter to use it throughout the cold months, so we have a horrendous problem with poachers. Over the years I’ve spent hiking around the property, I’ve come across deer that were shot dead for no reason at all except to have their antlers removed. When I was younger, I seen two dead bucks leaned up against each other and stuffed in a basalt crevice with the antlers sawed off. Such experiences really anger me. I cannot stop stereotyping the rednecks that do this. They are the worst breed of Southern Utah White Trash; they are those that destroy the soul of the wild. Damn them!