Published date:July 05, 2023
Last updated date:July 05, 2023
By Manny Manriquez
There’s a lot to enjoy about Paramount’s hit drama Yellowstone. And while much can be said about the acting, the dialogue, and the attention to detail on this premier show, land lovers among us will be quick to notice the real stars of the series: the ranches that set the scene for the Dutton family’s many ongoing dramas.
The Duttons and the Yellowstone Dutton Ranch may be works of fiction, but the contiguous land they inhabit are anything but. Here’s what to know about the real-life properties featured on Yellowstone, including how one of them recently sold for a huge price.
The Dutton Ranch is one of the primary focuses of Yellowstone, serving as not just the backdrop for the Dutton’s cattle operation but the source of much border-disputing chaos. And in real-life, it’s an actual working ranch located in Darby, Montana, with more than 2,500 acres of land and ample accommodations for guests (including fans of the show) to stay.
The history of Chief Joseph Ranch can be traced all the way back to the Salish Native
American tribe and was once home to a trail used by the Lewis & Clark Expedition. In 1877, Chief Joseph guided his people across the property to escape the U.S. army during the Nez Perce War, and three years later, in 1880, settlers homesteaded on the land.
In the years since, Chief Joseph Ranch has undergone many owners, including a glass tycoon by the name of William S. Ford and federal judge Howard Clark Hollister. It was Ford and Hollister who built the impressive log and stone structure that still stands on the land today and that serves as the home for the Dutton family.
Want to see it for yourself? Chief Joseph Ranch has two cabins available for rent, and in addition to seeing Yellowstone’s primary filming location up close and personal you’ll also get a look at the ranch’s ongoing working cattle ranch operation.
In season four of Yellowstone we’re introduced to the Four Sixes Ranch, a rambling Montana site dedicated to turning rowdy men into productive cowboys. More commonly referred to as the 6666 Ranch, this is a real property located right outside of Guthrie, Texas that spans more than 140,000 acres and multiple counties.
The big appeal of the 6666 Ranch (aside from its Yellowstone association) is probably its history. Founded by Samuel Burk Burnett, the site is credited with helping bring on the Texas Pandhandle’s big oil boom in the 1920s, as well as the major population growth in the state that followed as a result. It’s also been a regular filming spot over the decades, with The King of Swing James Robert Wills and actor Roy Rogers both using it as their stage.
In late January 2022, the legendary Guthrie property sold along with the 6666 Dixon Creek Ranch Division and 6666 Frisco Creek Ranch Division for more than $192,000,000 – the first time in its 150-year history that the property was available for purchase. Believe it or not, the sale was made to a group of investors led by Taylor Sheridan, the screenwriter/producer of Yellowstone, who grew up in North Texas in the shadow of the Four Sixes and used this ranch for the scope and operation of the fictional Dutton Ranch.
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