Whew! We know it has been a long time, but after battling technology we have finally got some updates from Brittany from her time at the Ladder Ranch.(Pictures will be added as more technical difficulties are overcome)
Well its been a very busy few weeks on the Ladder Ranch. Here is a short recap:
Monday we went up to the forest and gathered the cows that were on Dudley Creek. Panels were set up in between the two truck and trailers we had parked in a grassy area near the road. We pushed the cows against the panels and those of us on horses held them there while the cows and already branded calves were sorted off. After they were all sorted, the panels were brought around the calves. There were two ropers who heeled the calves and brought them to the nord forks near the fire. I was able to practice my meager roping skills on the very last calf. As it being the last calf, and I an inexperienced roper, everyone was in a hurry to be finished which led to Pat being kicked just below the knee, breaking the bone.
Tuesday, A group of us gathered the same cows at Dudley Creek and pushed them about five miles farther onto the forest to a leased pasture. We also cut out a Hereford pair to take to the Johnson house where the Herefords are being kept.
Wednesday, I opened the gate to heifers on the other end of the horse pasture where they were pastured. I spent the rest of the day taking mineral to the cows in Upper Big Gulch.
Thursday, the Fourth of July, we moved the cows in Upper Big Gulch to Upper Big Gulch West. We left the barn by 5:30 to move them across Battle Creek to the other side but by the time it was nine, Eamon made the executive decision to only move them to two pastures over due to the heat. The cows went well but by the time we got there, they were starting to fight it. We also roped, castrated and earmarked two calves that were unbranded.
Saturday, Eamon, his two sons and I put up the let down fence around the only side of Upper Big Gulch west that was not yet done. We also put out mineral and salt for the cows.
Sunday, I went up alone to clean up any cows that we had missed the day before. It took much longer than anticipated but accomplished my goal. That afternoon, everyone had off to the rodeo in Dixon where the kids were competing in events.
Monday, I helped rake hay. In the evening, Eamon wanted to pull a very small calf off of a heifer that was not supposed to have been bred as a calf the previous year. We roped the calf and after deciding that none of our horses would allow us to carry the calf, we tied it up with my rope so that it would not escape until we came back up later with a 4 wheeler. When we returned about 45 minutes later, the calf was gone along with my rope.
Tuesday, I got up at 2 am to rake alfalfa until breakfast. After that we all were concentrating on preparing for the Leopold Conservation award that was in two days. I went and found the calf in with the heifers with the 4 wheeler and roped it with a borrowed rope, to bring it back to the barn and the milk cows that we were going to graft the calf onto. I mowed yards and helped paint the rest of the day.
Wednesday, we all were finishing up projects for the party the next day.
Thursday, the Leopold Conservation Award celebration was in full swing for the day. A reception and presentations were held in the morning followed by lunch and then a tour of several places that are very critical to the Ladder ranch. It was a very nice celebration.
Friday, we went looking for three pairs on the Lidstones’s property which eluded us.
Saturday, we moved cows up on the Colorado forest. Then, I came back and put salt blocks in various places.
Sunday, we trailed some cows that were sorted out of a neighbor’s herd and left on the road to the Colorado forest. On the way up we found two more pairs, one of which we were certain had been in Lidstones only a few days before.