A brief history of
Lazy K Ranch
At Fresno State in the fall of 1959, Mike met a young “aggie” named Sherry. Mike knew from that day on, she would be his partner in their future cattle business. Sherry even owned her own cow named Bernadine. Little did Mike know they would also end up in the horse business.
After attending Cal Poly’s farrier school in 1964, the newlyweds moved their headquarters to Chowchilla, Ca. “Where there is a working cattle ranch, there are working horses.” This according to Mike & Sherry, who now run cows on over 40,000 acres at the base of Yosemite National Park. “To get our cows gathered in the fall we need a horse with a good mind, good legs and a big heart” Sherry added. That is why 45 years ago, the Knapp’s started raising their own ranch horses, and before long, friends and neighbors were asking if they had any extras for sale. In the spring of 1983 Lazy K Ranch held its first Pick A Colt Day Production Sale, and now over three decades later, the ranch offers over 60 head of “single-brand” registered horses annually to customers in North and Central America.
Lazy K has become known for its unique pairing of ranch raised working mares with the best performance horse bloodlines in the country. “When you see a horse packing a Lazy K on its hip, you know that is a horse bred for success”, said Larry Knapp, Lazy K’s General Manager. “Our breeding program includes stallions by some of the top money earners in our industry, including Metallic Cat, High Brow Cat, Peptoboonsmal, Shinning Spark, and Boonlight Dancer. And, don’t forget about our mares who carry bloodlines from Doc O Lena and Peppy San Badger. Mares that know how to work for a living and pass these traits on to their foals.”
Because of the ongoing need for ranch horses, the Lazy K crew spends a lot of time working with young horses for their own use as well as our annual PAC sale. “All of our yearlings complete Lazy K’s signature ground school,” said Michele Knapp-Stehly. The ’ground school’ is part of a much larger training program Tom Dorrance helped the ranch set up years ago. “We teach all our youngsters to face up when approached, lead from the ground, tie, load in a trailer, stand while groomed and have their feet trimmed, before sale day,” Michele added.
For those buyers interested in a show prospect, Lazy K Ranch is an AQHA Ranching Heritage Breeder, which allows owners of their livestock to participate in AQHA Ranching Heritage events and competition. Many of the sale colts and fillies, will also be eligible for the NRCHA Stallion Stakes. “It’s our belief that we offer some of the best bred and well-priced ranch, working and show stock horses available” said Sherry Knapp.
For more information about our Annual Pick A Colt Production Sale please visit our FAQ Page or if you would prefer to talk to a real person, text or call Michele at 559-760-7055