Linn Blancett pulls his pickup truck to a stop and lets out a weary sigh. "You see that area there," he says, pointing to a patch of land that borders a well pad pumping out gas, the surface once covered with grass now bare. "That’s supposed to be reseeded." We are in the northwest corner of New Mexico, a few miles from the Colorado border, in the heart of the San Juan Basin, a bowl-shaped, 7,500-square-mile expanse that sits atop one of the largest natural-gas reserves in the country. Linn Blancett and his wife, Tweeti, have been running cattle here for much of their lives. Their ranch stretches across 32,000 acres of mostly federal land, hilly, high-desert terrain where the Blancetts first settled as homesteaders six generations ago, back in the 1870s.
Read the Rest of the Story Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch