Arlen, Ronna, Lucky & Snickers    

We own and operate the Pleasant Acres Ranch which is the home to Deepwater Bay B&B, and we celebrated our 35th anniversary in the spring of 2007. Arlen's grandparents homesteaded the ranch in 1910, when the U.S. government opened up the northeast quadrant of the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation to homesteading. Arlen's parents had to move the buildings and five kids a quarter mile south of the original homestead in 1956 to avoid the rising waters of the Missouri river caused by the construction of the Garrison dam. This Garrison reservoir which was named Lake Sakakawea in honor of Lewis & Clark's Indian guide covered the original homestead, and the new ranch site is right on her shores. Arlen was six years old when the ranch was moved, so developing the new "homestead" has been a lifelong venture.  We both enjoy flowers and landscaping, so there is usually some project going to improve the esthetics of the farmstead.

Swen Gilbertson, Arlen's grandfather, was one of the first Polled Hereford breeders in the state, so we continued this enterprise along with expanding the farming operation of raising durum, hard red spring wheat, barley and oats. Since the 80's, sunflowers, canola, corn, and field peas have been added to the crop rotation, and Angus bulls are used on the cow herd to raise a crossbreed called a 'black baldy'. They are black with a white face and are the preferred mother cow by ranchers in the upper Midwest.  In the middle 1980's we developed a mobile home park overlooking Deepwater Bay for those desiring a summer home by the lake, and we developed a bed and breakfast in the 90’s for those wanting to use the hunting and fishing opportunities that exist in the area. It was expanded to a year around mode in 1997 to accommodate any travelers that seek the B & B method of traveling, and we are considering the possibility of hosting farm and ranch vacations for those who would like to see what farming and ranching is all about.  Arlen’s parents both entered the Parshall nursing home in 1995 and passed away in 1999. Their house has become a complete accommodation guest house for guests where they have the option of doing their own cooking.

The first four images on this page are the work of Christopher Becker, Arlen's brother-in-law.



Ronna was raised in Moorhead, MN, and is living proof that a "city girl" can adapt to anything a ND farm and ranch can dish out.  She learned to run the farm machinery and help with the livestock, as well as becoming a proficient gardener,  homemaker, and mom to two boys.  Her culinary skills have become legendary under the tutorship of her mother-in-law and a neighbor lady.  She enjoys downhill skiing, fishing, riding horse, and wheat weaving.  Best of all, she is a kind, caring person....the perfect B&B hostess.


From the vegetable garden to one of the flower gardens with one of her friends


Ronna back from a ride on Ben.


It is not hard to tell that she loves animals.  Here she holds one of the many Yellow Labs that we have raised and shipped all over the United States.



        click on any picture to enlarge

Arlen has lived on the ranch his entire life as mentioned above.    As amazing as it seems, learning continues after fifty.   The hobbies of guitar, downhill skiing, fishing, hunting, and learning the Russian language have been playing second fiddle to the B&B business lately.

One of my prized possessions is this 70's vintage Mossman Tennessee Flattop guitar which is one of the sweetest, mellow sounding guitars you will find.   


The summer of 2006 I put lots of miles on three year old Trinity, as it takes lots of wet saddle blankets to make a cow horse.....excellent therapy for the rider too.



If you've never seen ND in June and July you are missing the boat....yellow canola fields, lavender flax fields, white pea fields and the rest is green.  This is canola below.




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