“Cattle Ranching” Recap [SPOILERS]

And the correct answer to the “Cattle Ranching” puzzle was…

HANDLEBAR! With a large rooftop deck, specialty drinks, and an adult playground, Handlebar describes itself as “The Adult Wonderland”. This trendy hangout spot also features backyard games such as corn hole to keep its patrons entertained. The more adventurous visitors can even design their own Old Fashioned from a large selection of bitters and sweeteners.

For this puzzle, we are told we need to place the missing fences into the grid. But before we can do that, we first need to understand the logical rules that are in place. This is where the example on the right is helpful. There are two types of clues to understand. The first is the numbers inside the grid. One may guess these numbers refer to fences nearby, and the example confirms that these internal numbers count the number of fences in the 1×1 square immediately surrounding them.

The second type of clue is the numbers on the outside of the grid. These numbers always line up with a row or column of the grid. Therefore, one may guess these numbers count the fences in the corresponding row or column. Again the example confirms this guess.
Once the rules have been established, we are ready to place the fences into the large grid. The best places to start are with internal 4’s and 0’s since we do not need to worry about the positioning of fences around these numbers. It is also useful to place X’s into the grid to indicate where fences cannot go.

Another important logical step in this puzzle is realizing how to minimize or maximize the number of lines in a given row or column. Take, for example, the ninth column in the large grid shown here to the left. The outer 4 tells us there are 4 fences in this column, and we already have 2 fences given to us at the start. In addition, there are two 3’s in this column. Each 3 must have at least one fence directly above or below it (indicated here in red). We don’t know whether each 3 has the fence above or below yet, but we do know that no other fences can be placed in this column.

Continuing in this way with similar logical deductions allows us to fill in the rest of the grid. When this is done, the result is below:

The fences spell the final answer for this puzzle, HANDLEBAR.

This week’s first-place Fastest Solver was davidsteinandfriends, followed by teams Tyler Hinman in second and Kodiak in third! Nice work, everyone!

This week’s Best Photo award goes to Team “An Insignificant Onslaught of Trivial Devastation”, whose adorable furry friends seem to have had no trouble with this week’s puzzle:

And with that, the next puzzle, “Compass Time” has been posted! Good luck and happy solving!

Note: Handlebar is not affiliated with Mission Street Puzzles in any way.