Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Saturday, November 27, 2021

Pivotal Project

Back in 2005 Dad had a pivot sprinkler set up on our 30 acer hay field. However, when the guys installed it they put the pivot point in a spot that made the last tower hit the neighbor's fence. Beings it was springtime and we needed water, we just dealt with it. 16 years later, it was time to move it to it's proper location.

Pivot sprinklers dominate the Big Horn Basin anymore. 25 years ago, it was almost all flood irrigated. On our place, Grandpa irrigated mostly with hand line. The new pivot location wouldn't be far, 30' to the south and 20' to the west.

As is the nature of farmers, we decided we'd do as much of the work as we could ourselves. 

There isn't a level piece of ground on this homestead. 

Fortunately, Luke is pretty handy with concrete. 

The new pad would be 12' x 12' x 6" deep. We went 12" deep around the perimeter and measured carefully where the anchor bolts needed to be.  

4 1/2 yards of concrete later, she was set. 

After the pad was poured we planned to have the pivot guys come out and do the moving. However, they encouraged Dad that we could do it ourselves. Don't tempt me with a good time. 

The Friday after Thanksgiving looked to be the right day.

We built a 50' 3 phase extension cord so we could operate the towers as we moved it.

Then called in Luke with his trackhoe.

The idea was to get the towers perpendicular with the new pad and then just walk it over.

Half way up we discovered we were going to land above the pad. So we kept the pivot point stationary and backed the towers up a bit. 

The second shot did the trick. After burning up all our daylight getting there, she sat right down on our anchor bolts. 

Much better. 

This is only the beginning. Now with her set we'll have to plumb in the power and water from the old site. That'll be a good job for the spring. But what's even more fun is getting to build new corrals. Grandpa's old wooden ones were shot anyway. Now with a permanent location for the sprinkler, we can bring on the pipe. The plan is tubing and continuous fence. This move will also allow us to farm some ground that was previously not much more than a weed catch. A little farmer ingenuity can get a guy a long ways. 

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

Sunday, November 21, 2021


 Beauty is a participation in the Kingdom of God already.

Heartbreak Horses

The day finally came to bring the horses home. For the past 5 months they have been in horse heaven at Bill and Joanne Fields' place. The TLC they revieved there was second to none, let alone the pasture they had to run. I'm sure they are all gonna miss each other.

Bill and Joanne have been super good to me since I first arrived in Gillette. Like me, they would consider home to be in the Big Horn Basin.

It's been a real joy for both the horses and I to spend time with Joanne. She has a love and knowledge of horses that is good for us to be around. Now I know how to properly tie a halter knot, among many other tips. Thanks Joanne, we're gonna miss you. 

On to the next one.

You might consider my horses freeloaders. They bounce around from pasture to pasture, wherever they can find a spare blade of grass or a willing hand to give them a cup of oats. I can think of 7 different homes around CC that they have held up in over the past couple years. Each place they tend to fall in love with each other. And each time we move on to the next one they leave a hole in people's hearts. Happy memories through. Today they began their winter residence at Colleen Chauk's. A full ration of feed and a nice view, what more could they ask for. With Thanksgiving approaching, I'm forever grateful to the generous folks who house my horses. May God reward you.

Thursday, November 18, 2021

Tuesday, November 16, 2021

Saturday, November 13, 2021

Sale Day

These days farm auctions have mostly gone online. In my experience, it's rare anymore to get to wander around a sale, mingle with good folks, and hopefully stumble upon a good deal. With guys turning to the internet to sell equipment, the whole world now get's to weigh in. Finding a bargain, therefore, is rare. Well thanks be to God, Shane and I decided to show up to the Hayden Livestock sale today. We both walked away with smiles. 

When I was a kid I can remember going to auctions with Grandpa. All I recall is that they were long and cold. Usually they were in the early spring, and for us kids, there was nothing to do. As we got older I can remember running the circuit of farm sales with my buddies. The first time I ever bought anything though was after high school. I was bidding on a drill press and was so nervous that I bid myself up!

Now there's a proud new owner. Shane was the only one to bid on this 1998 beauty. I think it was meant to be. Well done brother. Let the good times roll.

This was one of the main attractions. A JD 4030, probably a mid 70's model. I've been around this series of tractor plenty and could see it was in exceptional shape for it's age. The cab is after market, which was not uncommon on tractors back then. The loader is sweet and the hours are low.

In today's market, especially in the online world, it would be well out of our price range. But with a live auction and a windy day, I thought we might have a chance.

Turns out we were right.

Thanks be to God for a fun and successful day. Good things come to those who wait I guess. Standing around outside on a chilly November day isn't necessarily my idea of a good time, but it paid off for both of us. It is so good to visit with people too. Most guys I chatted with I didn't even know their name. But in agriculture we are all neighbors. Now it's time to get to work. 

Tuesday, November 2, 2021

Rest a While

We need to be healthy in order to be holy.             https://youtu.be/-CRsGDdrbe0