I was just elbowed via email by Wade. Wade came out on a July cattle drive a few years ago. Wade’s nudge has forced me to publically recognize that I have not posted anything since September. This might lead someone to believe that Moore Ranch had fallen off the map, or perhaps things have really slowed down at the ranch.
First of all, Moore Ranch is still on the map. In fact some GPS systems will now bring you to the ranch. Google maps will make us appear if you type in 2933 Creek E instead of our correct address of 2933 CR E (County Road E).
Second of all, things have not slowed down here at the ranch that much. There are hundreds of things I could have written about in the last few months. As I allow my mind to randomly wander, I will write to you some of the happenings at the ranch since September.
Once the October cattle drive is over, it means that all the cows are north of the ranch about 30 miles. Joe stays busy nearly every day building fence on cornstalks and rye pasture, feeding cattle, moving yearlings, cows and stocker cattle to new pasture. The last week he has been trudging through the snow and breaking ice on all the stock tanks. There are nearly 800 head of cattle to be looked after everyday. There are no corrals in these fields, so he and Laramie have roped a few head here and there that were sick and doctored them. Laramie and I roped a couple of steers that were bullers and hauled them off to a corral for solitary confinement.
Joe and I roped a blind calf. Before I could get the horses out of the trailer, Joe saw the opportunity to snag the calf as he walked out in front of the pickup. This would have been an excellent time saver had another heifer not ran through the loop at the same time. The well heifer ran off with Joe’s rope and the blind heifer remained uncaught. His time saving strategy wasn’t effective as we had to rope the blind heifer and give her antibiotics and then find the rope theiving heifer, rope her and retrieve Joe’s rope.
No one has been bucked off in the past 3 months except for me. We have practiced roping a bit when the weather was mild and the arena wasn’t frozen. Laramie has been practicing bull dogging. He is sitting 4th in the High School rodeo standings.
The coyotes are terribly thick and have been coming right up to the chicken house door to help themselves to breakfast, lunch and dinner. Laramie and his trusty gun and the trapper have slowed that situation down.
All the weanling colts are home as of yesterday. All of the horses except for the stud and brood mares are at the ranch now. I am scared to death to take a total head count. I am not sure I want to count that high.
Yesterday we worked 176 head of steers. They were given vaccinations, some were dehorned and all were branded. I am reminded of that fact everytime I walk back to the coat rack. Everyone’s hats and coats still smell like pungent branding smoke.
So far the longhorn cows have been on 3 different fields of cornstalks. Last time we moved them it was only about 15 degrees outside, however; there was no wind and the 3 mile or so move was pleasant.
Joe just pulled up in the barnyard with the pickup, trailer and horse. He will be unsaddling his horse in the dark and be up to the house for supper. Our days have been starting before daylight and ending after sundown. There is a good chance of rain tonight! We are hoping for an end to the drought this year. If nothing else, I will push for an end to the drought of blog posts. Thanks for the reminder Wade!