This has been the year for me to really learn some useful, helpful ranching techniques. I assisted in pulling a baby calf, fed all the cows by my lonesome, spent a zillion hours in a tractor dragging meadows, and kind of mastered driving a semi. If I could ever learn to shift past 4th gear then I'd really be trucking.
We're busy putting the hay up on the ranch, and since others are busy moving cows I get to help haul hay. Luckily there are some great little helpers who love the semi and tractors, and will talk my ear off about anything and everything so the hours of loading and unloading go by faster.
Sometimes we use a backhoe, which is even more exciting than the tractor. It's hard to get little guys to ride with me when they have a backhoe to bounce around in.
After loading up it's time to drive into the stack yard and unload. The semi can carry 22 bales, and the flatbed trailer holds 12. After 9 trips each we finally cleaned off our big pivot, picking up 300 bales in 5 1/2 hours. That doesn't include the 6 hours spent the day before. Haying is time consuming!
One more thing I've started to pick up on: backing up. Backing up with a trailer has been my kryptonite for so long, but not this year!
After we're all done it's time for fun! Auntie is not only awesome at stacking bales, she makes a great bridge. I'm not sure I'm long enough or strong enough to be a bridge.
But I can (barely) catch a kid!