Spearfish Livestock Association

"The longstanding conflict between ranchers and conservationists is not only hopeless, but ruinous for both..."   
-W. Berry

About Us


Founded in 1917 at the request of the U.S. Forest Service,  the original intent of our organization was to advise and collaborate with the Forest Service on range management and grazing issues.  While still operating in this capacity today, the Spearfish Livestock Association, also works closely with the South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks on a myriad of issues.

Our Members

The Spearfish Livestock Association is comprised of grazing permittees on the Black Hills National Forest.  The majority of these producers operate on private land adjacent to the Black Hills during the nine months of the year when cattle are not on the National Forest.  

Our Mission

Being tasked with caring for our shared public lands, as well as the care of our own private lands, is a privilege and responsibility that the membership of the SLA takes very seriously.  As agrarians, our livelihood depends on our ability to sustainably manage our natural resources.  The membership of the SLA fully recognizes that public lands belong to all of us and that the National Forest system should be managed for multiple use.  


We are stronger together than going it alone, and as such, the Spearfish Livestock Association is always open to new members.  The only requirement for membership is to currently possess and operate a grazing allotment on the Black Hills National Forest.  If you do not have an allotment but are still interested in our organization, we will be discussing the potential to create an associate membership in the near future. Please check back for more info.

Contact Us

We would like to hear from you!

If you have questions or comments for us we would be interested to hear them.  We enjoy and encourage a healthy debate regarding the management of the Black Hills National Forest and are interested to hear your thoughts on the subject.  Please contact

Aaron Thompson

President, Spearfish Livestock Association

19461 Crocus Hill Drive

Spearfish, SD

email: redwater24@gmail.com