March 26, 2015

Moving cows and calves

One of the days before we left Colorado, we got to see Mick move his cow/calf pairs. Justin helped. The kids and I stood around watching and occasionally getting in the way. It was terrific fun.

Mountains in the morning. 

The girls watching the canyon go by

Pretty cool to have in your back yard, hm?

Mick waiting with a lagging calf. Dawna had hooked up the cattle trailer and we all piled in the truck to follow along behind the herd and put any calf who wasn't moving ahead in the trailer. Only one had to be put in. 


Galloping down to meet up with the others

The calves don't really know what they are doing. While cows will quite frequently go where you are directing them, the calves like to stop and smell the sagebrush and generally see no need to scurry. A little tap from the rope keeps them moving with their mammas.

Very straggly bunch, with all the calves milling around. 

That's my cowboy!

Father and son

Justin getting after an escapee

This red calf. Not sure where it came from. But it was cute against all the black.

Heading up the lane to the corrals

Cottonwood buds (I think)

Following them up the lane

Kids hanging out the window

Finally where they are supposed to be. And the bellowing and bawling started in earnest, with mothers looking for little lost calves and calves hollering their little heads off. 

There is a little sorting, trying to aim cows and calves in each other's direction

A calf, doing his thing

Waiting for them to settle

Justin's aunt Cari, Justin, and Matt, the guy who owns the ranch

Mick checking his cows



I loved the train in the background

Kids on the fence

Matt and Justin doing something in earnest

A reunion


Running after a cow who went through the fence to the horses

A few more of the canyon, just for good measure

March 24, 2015

Sugaring season sluggishly starts

(Oh yes, I did just alliterate pretty marvelously there in the title.)

The day after we got home from our trip, the guys were up bright and early (ish) getting all the tapping stuff together. Even though they were a little late in the year to start tapping, people who had tapped earlier hadn't got enough sap to boil. So they were just in time. That was two weeks ago, and we still haven't got enough sap to boil. It is a very late, very slow season. This is mostly (or entirely) due to the weather, which has hit around zero three days this past week, with highs in the teens. These are not the temperatures conducive to sap running. It should run tomorrow, with a vague possibility of a few other days this week. Hopefully we can boil this weekend. Seeing as it is almost April, it is about time.

Uncle Owen giving four wheeler rides

Loading up at the sugar shack with buckets, taps, and tubing

Kids all loaded up

Then we decided the kids had to get out, since they were going to drive about 3 miles to the sugar bush they tap. They kids had to get in the boringly prosaic van and follow along. 

Driving along

They stopped at the edge of the woods to load the kids back up

All loaded up. 
Seriously, these two. Would it kill them to smile pleasantly? 

Oh, here, as they are disappearing out of camera range, they smile.  

And away they go!

Lincoln was not feeling well, so he got some iPad and Clover-the-cow snuggle time.

The kids looking at something on the computer

 Starting to sugar coincided with Pi day (3-14) so there was a smorgasbord of pies. All delicious.

And then, games!