"California or bust" on my mind | SierraSun.com

"California or bust" on my mind

Jody Poe

In the mid-19th century, thousands of courageous, bold individuals sold their Midwest farms and loaded wagons to head west. Some came in search of gold and silver, some in search of endless grass and fertile farmland. All came for a better way of life.

Recently my husband, son and I did much the same thing. Although our wagon was more of the Dodge variety and the trip was much less risky than the trek the early pioneers must have made, we’re pioneering nonetheless.

This move is a big one for us, a complete lifestyle change. Would we really sell everything and move 1,100 miles away to a completely different way of life? On our first trip to visit Truckee early this spring, we were met by a beautiful and fierce landscape. We were snowed-in on our journey, too, but not discouraged. This place has a feeling about it — a strength, a passion and a spirit of adventure.

With all the confidence that goes along with ignorance, we determined to head west, exchanging our livelihood of 12 years for one of adventure. We sold our home, a small cattle ranch and farm. Unique to most ranches in the region, our place lay along the North Platte river. It is one of only five fly-aways for Canadian geese and other North American game birds. The land will continue to support cattle, with an eye toward nature conservation under the guidance of a new owner. Stewardship of the land is important to us and knowing such care would be given made our decision to leave a little easier.

For the early settlers, the way west was a journey of a lifetime. Our way west will change our life. The opportunity to be a part of Truckee and the Sierra Sun is something we’re embracing completely. We were ready for this new chapter. California or bust.