It has been crazy busy around here lately between the bull sale (which went great!), final wedding plans, graduating college in May, and calving. The crazy April blizzards we are getting aren’t helping anything, it’s snowing as I write this, although at least we don’t have 50mph winds.
We are at the point where most of the char cows and red heifers are done calving, but the commercial herd could start any day. Those cows aren’t quite as easy to handle and are not locked up behind the barn for close watch, instead all 151 of them are out in a large lot where they get driven through with the ranger instead of walked through on foot to be checked. With all the snow we just got, there is plenty of opportunity to get stuck and curse the ranger and the cows.
I honestly don’t know why I keep going out when he asks “wanna go check cows with me”. I should be smarter by now, but I go anyway. There are a few black cows ready to pop, one he thought was particularly close and figured we should try to get her up in the yard close to the barn. She didn’t quite feel the same way and it took plenty of convincing with the Ranger to get her up “almost” in the pen she needed to be– It’s all fun and games until you are in the passenger seat with a driver who feels like a big momma cow needs a bump with the passenger side of the ranger.
With snow drifts all over she knew exactly where to go so that we couldn’t get close to her in the ranger without the chance of getting stuck and her heading back to where we came from. So, as usual, once she was in the corner (right next to the gate she needed to go through) he tells me to jump out and try to walk her in while he’s on the other side in case she makes a break for it. I do as I’m told and she plays for a while, running past the gate every time, to my corner and then to him in the ranger before making her break for freedom through a deep snowdrift. She made it and the ranger did not.
This may be a good time to mention that black cows are cursed around here constantly. I feel bad for them once in a while. If a cow is going to misbehave it’s more than likely a black or black baldie. Not only are they a little wild once in a while but they get pretty dang mean when they calve as well. To be fair, the charolais cows go through much more human interaction time around here, therefore they should be more tame. Anyways, each rancher has their favorites, and on this ranch the black cows are at the bottom of the list!
Back to being stuck… If you want to hear a ranchers’ vocabulary be around during calving or getting stuck going after a cow. First it will be the cows fault because she is black, then it will be the rangers fault because its too low to the ground, needs tracks, or is just a piece of sh*t. Never is it the drivers fault, unless it is someone else driving.
Needless to say the cow is now back out with the rest of the cursed black cows and the ranger is parked in the garage with the calf sled on back and ready for the midnight check… Hopefully it goes a little smoother then.