Monday, May 29, 2023

A Branding to Remember

The day we had all been waiting for finally arrived, Kuhbacher's branding. Memorial Day seems to be the standard date these days. It was perfect weather. We dodged storms left and right, but the Good Lord provided us with a just right day for branding. 

Chief and I went up the night before and camped out. Super beautiful.

We actually both got rested up pretty good.

The posse of cowboys arrived around 7am and circled the wagons to get our marching orders.

Jason sent different groups to different areas of the pasture to gather the some 300 head.

This is definitely horse country. Sometimes these draws get so deep you can't even cross them horseback.

Branding is always a family affair. Terese, Travis, Jason, and Boni lead the way.

Matt and Mark help their bother Jason spot his herd.

You can't trail the way the crow flies around here. You have to follow the cow trails, which may be the long way around. 

Jason has been running a Black Angus and Hereford cross. The result are baldy calves. I like these little buckskin buggers. 

Once gathered, we headed for the trailers.

The final push in the the pen is intense. All hands on deck.

Got em.

Chief was feeling good and was now ready to switch gears to roping. 

But first a breakfast break.

Chief and I were in the first heat of ropers. 

Let's ranch!

Looking good. When its upright, his brand is a lazy U 7. 

Once that bunch was done, we headed on to the next one. 

A good hundred first calves heifers awaited us. 

This location was back at their home place.

Once gathered, they cut out the cows. You always keep two ropers on the outside of the pen in case a calf sneaks by. 

They saved the best ropers for last. 

Wrestlers as well. Sam earned his keep today.

So did Grandpa Jack.

The calves got it all, even pour-on. 

Once we knocked that last bunch out, we headed for home. Sam took Chief. 

Time to feast.

Everybody's favorite part. 

Giddy up!

Can't beat it. I love branding. Nothing smells like freedom more than branding smoke. We can take for granted the opportunities we have around here. But cowboying on Memorial Day brings it all home. Thank God for those who have, and continue to, sacrifice themselves to ensure our freedom. America is proud. 

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