Monday, October 11

the weekend

this last weekend was another busy/relaxing one spent at the ranch, helping with fall work.

saturday we gathered cow/calf pairs off the meadow near the ranch headquarters and took them to the corrals to sort the calves off the cows. the calves were weaned and shipped off in two trucks, and the cows were pregnancy-tested for next spring's calves. the non-pregnant cows, or 'open' cows, will be sold, and the bred cows will be taken back to the owner's place for the winter.

this photo is scott and a guy named willy from cody. the work in the corrals is a combination of on horseback and afoot.

after we finished that, saturday afternoon i watched the university of wyoming football game with sister-in-law becky and took a nap on the couch! it was wonderful, until the men started coming in the house and kept waking me up... scott and i went to bed early, and i was actually ready to wake up and able to make it to the house for breakfast fully awake the next morning.

saturday morning breakfast was at 5, and we had to wait forever for the cloudy morning to brighten up enough to get to work. at least it seemed like forever. i helped becky do the dishes and clean up the kitchen, and it was still a while before we left the house. even though they're early, and i put off getting out of bed as long as possible, i do enjoy ranch breakfasts. becky always does a good job, and the whole crew sits around and drinks black coffee and eats eggs, bacon, biscuits and gravy, cinnamon rolls or whatever else she's prepared for the morning.

sunday morning we saddled again and loaded the horses to go gather a pasture and kick the pairs through the gate to the next pasture over. in a few days that pasture will be gathered, and the pairs trailed all the way to the house, in preparation for shipping their calves. the association is a busy place this time of year, with all the members and those running on leased shares shipping their calves and gathering their cows up to take to their various wintering grounds, to return again the next spring.

after arriving down at the pasture sunday morning we unloaded and scattered across the landscape to collect the cows, which were pretty much equally scattered to all corners. and we were trying to push them upcountry, and of course all the spoiled girls only wanted to head downcountry. and there was some *ahem* less-then-skilled help that came along with the guy leasing shares this summer, so that made for more work but great stories to recount afterward!

 my girls were very excited to be gathered up to work over the weekend. it's been a long time since i've got them from their pasture and put them to good use. i left them and all my tack up at the ranch for the week, as i have to leave town for three days this week. that way they'll be there when i need them next saturday.
 scott's little foxy waits safely under the fence at the horse corrals.
 i think lucy had just come through the creek when i was gathering the colts in so the one could be gelded.
 all four pups got their rabies shots while the vet was there.
 meg is lucy's sister, and a very big girl.
 scott and jamie sunday morning.
piling out to unload the horses and gather cows on sunday.

 following bulls down the bottom, pushing them west to join the rest of the bunch. lucy loves to help.
 more bulls. it was a gorgeous day to be out riding.
 lucy knows to take advantage of rest breaks when they're available.
this is about half of the cows, right before we kicked them through the gate.

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