Darrell Turner was 30 and living the city life and doing very well in his career as a mechanical engineer when he and his wife, an architect, looked at each other one day and decided to take a break. The couple visited 13 national parks over two months and then came back to Egremont to stay with Darrell’s parents while they figured out their next steps. That next step, it turned out, was to stay right there to work with his dad, Bill, and uncle, Paul. It’s worked out well, everyone agrees. “We find our own corners,” Bill says. “It’s pretty nice having him back here.”
“We came back looking for kind of a simple life. We’d done the city life. We wanted to get back to the country,” Darrell says. Along with helping on the dairy farm, Darrell has launched his own company on the farm, Turner Hill Malting Co., producing malted barley, a key ingredient much in demand by regional craft brewers. His engineering background has helped there and also with the dairy operation, which recently added a state-of-the-art robotic milking system. “I’ve always been a really hands-on person. I enjoy physical labor. I like tinkering with stuff,” says Darrell.