He ranches near Montpelier, Idaho, a small town in the high country of the southeastern corner of the state. At an elevation of almost 6,000 feet, it's near the Wyoming border and about 3 hours north of Salt Lake City. It's where he grew up as a kid, milking his father's cows by hand and doing farm chores when he was just six years old. It's where he raised his family and where he still lives, six decades later.
"I don't think I'd like to raise a family any other way," he said. "Growing up on a ranch teaches children responsibility and a strong work ethic."
A budding entrepreneur already showing that strong work ethic, Lynn bought his first cows from a neighbor when he was just 10. "He gave me a milk can, too," he said as he talked about his first step into the dairy business. "It was after my older brother bought some more milk cows that we added a milking machine. We got rid of the cans and got a bulk tank, too."
He raised five children on the farm; three sons and two daughters who have grown up, gotten married, and presented him with 13 grandchildren. "Thad's the oldest at 40 and has 4 children," he responded when I asked about the next generation.
His daughter, Heidi Teuscher, 39, has three children. Jay, 36, has two children and Layne, 32, the son who works daily with Lynn and will take over when Lynn is ready to retire, has one daughter. Katie Lauritzen is just 30, the youngest of the five. Three children keep her busy. All of the children helped with the dairy and beef operation while they were growing up. Lynn appreciates the hard work his family put into the business.
“I worked with my father, Golden, until he passed away in 2005. I got married in 1973 and my wife, Rowleen, and I started building the dairy business in 1976. We have 150 mother beef cows and 45 dairy cows," he said as he talked about the ranch. "We raise most of our own feed; meadow hay, alfalfa for the milk cows, and what we call three way hay - oats, barley and wheat." A thousand acres of pasture gives his herd plenty of grazing room, too.
His father and grandfather started the business with Herefords and later switched to Angus. Today, Lynn and Layne have a mixed herd of milk cows, including Holsteins, Brown Swiss and Swedish Red. They run Black and Red Angus in their beef operation.
He grazes his herd on private and public lands. "It used to take us three days to move our cattle to the summer range," Lynn said. He still has great memories of camping out overnight during those 'old time' cattle drives. "Now, we can move them in just a day."
Like most Cattlemen's Beef Board (CBB) members, Lynn has a long history of volunteer work in service to the industry. He has served as president and first and second vice president of the Idaho Water Users Association; and as a board member of the Idaho Beef Council, United Dairy of Idaho, Dairy Farmers of America, the Independent Dairy Environmental Action League, and the Farm Service Agency.
"United Dairy of Idaho asked if I would serve on our state beef council so I accepted. It led to my nomination to the CBB where I'm just finishing up my second year," he said.
"I'm on the Nutrition Committee. I've learned a lot and enjoyed it," he said "They asked me if I wanted to serve on a different committee so I might be somewhere else next year. It would be interesting. I want to contribute but, just as much, I want to learn as much as I can. A new assignment would help me do both."