Sunday, December 30, 2007
I got my name because my momma was a paint and when I as born they expected me to have some color - I didn't...so they said, "What a Dud" I'm glad at my young age I didn't know what a Dud was! I like to think of myself as Studly Dudley! This computer thing is kind of fun I hope onecowgirl lets me post some more...guess I should brown nose a bit a tell her how much I love her!!
Tuesday, December 25, 2007
In the winter we put out syrup feeders - this concoction is full of nutrients and molasses. We have winter grasses but the cows need a supplement. Its funny the old cows that recognize the syrup feeders can't wait for you to get it unloaded and filled - they give you the "hurry up" look. The feeder itself has four wheels on it and the cows like the wheels which turn in the feeder. Sometimes we bait the cows by pouring syrup on top of the feeder. That's Dudley licking the syrup feeder - which is a no, no - it has some ingredient in it that is bad for the horse's liver. Dudley is doing fine and now I no longer let him lick syrup feeders!
Sunday, December 23, 2007
Saturday, December 22, 2007
Friday, December 21, 2007
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
Yesterday I had the pleasure of hearing Jim Stovall speak - if you haven't read his book the Ultimate Gift or seen the movie I strongly suggest you do. I love to hear Jim's nuggets of advice - live each day as if it is your last - you never know what will happen. Jim was faced with the challenge of total blindness and he has gone onto to accomplish phenomenal things! Hearing him speak is very inspirational!
Monday, December 17, 2007
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
I recently had a visitor stop by my blog and share the great Florida Cattle Drive of 2006 with me. I knew Florida was full of cattle country thanks to the John Kral book that a North Carolina girlfriend gave me - it is a beautiful coffee table book. Though I've never been invited to work on a Florida cattle ranch..HINT, The terrain looks fascinating - though watch out for the gators! The Spaniards introduced horses and cattle in Florida long before cattle ranching started in Texas -
Here is a narrated slide show about the Great Fla. Cattle Drive in 2006
and here are some photos from the Cattle Drive by Carlton Ward. Thanks for sharing Leslie!
Monday, December 10, 2007
Don't get me wrong - I love riding at the ranch and moving cows! But if I could take a horseback riding trip once a month anywhere in the world for a year it would be a dream come true. Check out Equitours - this company specializes in riding trips around the world! If you could go anywhere in the world tomorrow where would you want to go?
Friday, December 7, 2007
Thursday, December 6, 2007
I am amazed at the variety of blogs I've found. It has been fun peaking/lurking into others lives, learning more about others and what they are doing, attempting to communicate, leaving messages here and there in hopes of getting a message on my blog or getting more dots on my map! Some guests have even been gracious enough to list onecowgirl in their blogroll! Thank you. There are some beautiful blogs out there. And I've only reported one for obscene content. Though I am a bit jealous over some peoples lives - like the couple that is traveling around the world.
I am amazed at the number Martha Stewarts that are living among us - I don't have a decorating bone in my body! Though one blog in particular the little red house inspired me to post this picture of my everyday china. This is the original Wallace China from the 1930s that I use in my kitchen. Quick - what are some of your initial thoughts on blogs?
Monday, December 3, 2007
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Monday, November 26, 2007
I had the pleasure of watching this horse work in the pens the other day sorting three mommas off from a bunch at a time. She knew her job and when a fourth one sneaked by (which inevitably will happen) she would pen her ears back and stick out her neck - you could just tell she wasn't happy about it! She had so much expression. She was really fun to watch!
Sunday, November 25, 2007
The Aerometer Company of
Friday, November 16, 2007
I really like this photo but there is no detail in the moon. Now, if I learned photoshop - (first I have to buy the software) then I would put some detail in the moon! There are advantages to getting up early - think of what I would miss.
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
I often wonder if animals have a sense of time. Like when you leave your cat for a few days - do they know the difference if you are gone two days or six days? As for cows and time - they do have a sense of when they are to move from one pasture to another to some extent. I wonder if this gal knows the time has come - time to sort off her calf and she'll have to say farewell.
Thursday, November 1, 2007
I just adore early morning light and isn't this a great photo! One thing about getting up early and working on the ranch is that some days you have to tack up in the dark! I don't mind getting up in the pitch black & running out to the corrals to feed the horses but tacking up in the dark is one of my least favorite things to do. Perhaps I can get the cows to sleep late along with Hollywood! But that will never happen and I'll miss photo ops!
Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
Monday, October 29, 2007
Last week my job in the pens was to sort off some calves push them down an alley (close the gate behind me) then push the calves up onto the scales and close the gate to the scales. Its best if you push the same number of calves onto the scales each time so the person doing the weighing doesn't have to keep changing the weights. Doing this job with two people and you can usually push ten calves up onto the scales with one person its a little harder - you've got to be careful. I don't think people realize how athletic cows are - they are fast, can turn on a dime and when they decide to go the other direction - its 550 lbs that is headed towards you. So, when its two calves turning back on you its over a 1000 lbs...you get the picture. You've got to run behind them, shake your paddle, make noise and push them - I usually pushed 6 calves at a time onto the scales. Now, this job will get you in shape -
Thursday, October 25, 2007
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
This time of year after the calves have been weaned from the mothers - it is time for the mothers to get preg tested. During the preg. test if the cow has any age on her then her teeth get checked! Of course, a cow needs teeth in order to eat - keeps up her strength during pregnancy and after she drops her calf. If she doesn't eat then the calf won't grow. And we all know less weight means less money! Some cows are more cooperative than others when it comes to the dental check!
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
I kept telling myself - I am smarter than these cows and three young bulls! It was almost like a mantra. We were moving more cows & calves to be weaned - I was told - you work the area between that gully and the fence line. I politely asked, "If any of them cross the gully am I still responsible for them?" I was told, "N0, just don't leave any behind." Since I once got reprimanded for leaving an ornery bull behind I knew he meant business. Seemed to me like the gully was pretty close to the fence line - I'm thinking this is going to be a piece of cake! Wrong.
My cows did not seem the least bit interested in moving south towards the gate we were pushing them thru. The gully began running further and further from the fence line. One cow insisted on running over to some other bellowing momma cows in the next pasture which was in the wrong direction. I worked Dudley back and forth and back forth from the gully to the fence line trying to get the cows to move. Now, it really didn't help that I had three young bulls in one group - leaderless bulls I must add. They would move about 25 feet and stop. I kept repeating my mantra - I am smarter than these cows and three young bulls..it felt like I was trying to move a mountain....What I did learn was I should of pushed the cows 100 to 200 yards towards the gate and then gone back for the bulls instead of trying to get them all gathered same time. But when my three young bulls crossed the gully and I handed them off to the ranch manager I grinned from ear to ear!! Later as we were riding together I told him my mantra - he laughed and said, "I've been doing this for over forty years and cows still do things that amaze me." He had also seen me struggling with the bulls.
We started early moving the cows and calves from the trap - into the pens (those dot in the top picture are cow and calves)- it was early, the air was crisp and the wind was beginning to blow...
After we gathered them into the pens, Dale started sorting off the calves. I stayed out of the way and tied Dudley inside a pen that wasn't being used. Then, I was asked to help!! The task at hand was to put 10 calves in the alley from one pen and push them onto the scale. The trick was to make sure we had only ten in the alley to push onto the scale -that way the scale didn't have to be reconfigured each time. I'm kind of short so counting calves from the ground accurately isn't one of my greatest talents! As we were getting our 10 calves in the alley the gate operators were allowing more calves into the alley as Dale was sorting them. So we had to move quickly either pushing the correct number of calves from the pen or using the ones Dale was pushing into the alley or a combination of both. It was fun and fast though around cows you need to move quietly as not to get them excited. The wind blew all day and I actually had wind burn on my face. Once we had all the calves weaned they were shipped to another area to graze for 45 days. What a fun day!
Tuesday, October 9, 2007
For the past three weeks - I've either been ridin fence, findin fence or buildin fence. Which do I prefer? - ridin fence can become tedious and boring - hour after hour, up & down hills, climbin over rocks,.....as for findin fence - it can be rough - thick bushes, creeks, bogs, cliffs - it is definitely for the rough and tough! Don't get me wrong I've seen some beautiful country hunting for fences! Now, building and fixing fence thats the ultimate - take for instance the 20 yards of fence that was washed out in the creek -now, once we found it - trekking thru brush that was over my head down to a pretty little creek that only had a few inches of water - at 2 PM - no fence to speak off - armed with a machete and an ax - cutting down brush, limbs and looking for salvageable materials (wire/fence posts) - who wants to wade thru the throny bushes again to go back to the truck for materials? By 5:30 PM the fence it rebuilt in the creek! Now, thats satisfaction. Wish I had before and after pictures to show! You will have to settle for a ridin fence photo!
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
Last night my dear friend Carol called - her beloved horse Angel was colicing - never mind I had dinner about cooked - anxiously waiting for my man to drive in from the ranch - we were going to watch the season finale of "Saving Grace" with Holly Hunter on TNT - jokingly referred to as Humpin Holly - but when a friend calls with a sick horse - you go. I threw the butte paste and some other colic medicine shots in the truck and drove like a madwoman to the Rock Ranch. Angel had been thrashing around her stall and was pretty torn up - I was out of the truck and had the paste down her throat in a matter of seconds. Carol kept walking her and I hooked my truck upto her gooseneck. Thankfully I had a flashlight in the truck so I could see in the pitch dark - yes, there is no electricity at the Rock Ranch. Carol called the vet again and we loaded up Angel. Carol rode in the trailer and I drove - a little more gingerly this time - precious cargo - a horse and my girlfriend in the back of the trailer. We arrived at the vet's house/clinic around 8:20 PM. Its a father/daughter vet team. I proceeded to hold Angel as Sid stuffed a four foot plastic tube up Angel's nose and from the bucket they pumped some type of oil into her stomach. She quivered and shook as if she was going to fall down. Then we moved her into a corral where the sides are close enough she couldn't lie down. Then they stuck an IV in her & started her with liquids because she was dehydrated. Then we waited and waited and waited - a few hours later and still no bowel movement. Did I explain what colic is? The hours passed quickly in the barn as I played hop scotch, alphabet games and sang mickey mouse songs with Sid's three year old grandaughter and learned more about Sid's family history. A quiet time. Then after a few hours loaded with more drugs we took Angel home to continue the wait. I left Carol and Angel at the Rock Ranch driving her hybrid car headed home to salvage dinner with my honey. I had to call Carol three times to ask questions about the the hybrid's computer screens, gas gauge, how to turn off the car ...the gps was prettty cool though and the camera! I love gadgets.
Then sometime around 7am my phone rang it was Carol - Angel had died. I could feel her tears on the phone and know the pain she must feel. She was around the corner bringing me my truck - we hugged and cried together in my driveway. I will miss Angel.
Farewell my dear angel - thanks for the great rides & big heart & willingness to share yourself with so many novices.
Monday, September 17, 2007
Though I don't relish riding alone - I do love it when I have a task to complete. As I was debating about where to ride - my honey suggested I follow the creek & push out any cows I found back around the mtn. It's a spot we'd pushed cows out from before so I was comfortable with the task. There were nine pair hidden under a cottonwood and once they saw me enter the pasture and head towards them - they moved out. Almost like little kids that knew they weren't supposed to be hanging out on this side of the mtn. It was pretty easy to push them back to the dirt tank - along the way I picked up a Charolais bull and another pair. Then I went back up the side of another hill to push down some cows so I could get an accurate count. So, I was upto 14 pair that had wondered back into this part of the pasture (there isn't much water in the dirt tank) so we're keeping a count. I rode up another hill and was headed back to the house - virtually making a big loop around this this mtn. There are many canyons on the sides of these hills and I've been up & down hundreds of them - some easier to cross than others.
I headed down a rather steep one and Dudley my trusty steed didn't think twice about it. As I got to the bottom and began heading up the other side - all of the sudden Dudley was on all fours thrashing about obviously entangled in some wire. I quickly jumped off - I was close to the ground one would say practically on it - Dudley continued to struggle, thrash - it was incredibly scary to see him struggling and thrashing about - he managed to get up, moved a few feet and then as he kept struggling - the wire took him back down to the ground - his legs looked contorted. By this time, I am truly scared for my horse and I'm thinking, how in the heck am I going to get to my fence pliers in my saddlebag to cut the wire if he doesn't calm down.
He managed to get up again - this time he made it about four feet and the wire took him back down to the ground for a third time. The contortion continued - his legs were going in every direction. I am thinking what if he breaks a leg. He finally gets up - stands there holding his leg in the most peculiar position. We are both breathing hard and Dudley's nostrils are coated in dirt.
I walked the four miles back to the house. And thankfully Dudley was ok. He is such a great horse!!
Tuesday, August 7, 2007
If you've ever spent time on a large desert ranch you know the trials and tribulations of water - water lines, finding values, locating leaks, windmills and such...and sometimes you just have to get dirty to get it fixed and hope you've got the right parts! This photo was taken around 7 PM - We had returned home around 6 after building a half mile of barbwire fence ready to relax and eat dinner instead we had no water at the house and a leak in the corrals! Whether it is replacing a float in a water tank, figuring out a pressure problem or fixing a leak - plumbing is an important component of running a ranch! Who needs dinner?
Sunday, July 15, 2007
Sat. I rode Dudley up to the three dirt tanks near the house. All three had water! The cows were loving it. It was too hot to ride with my camera. Sun. we worked a few cows - done by 8 AM - a record. Then we hauled the horses - near the vine tank - we took our trusty steads into the what was once referred to as the Bull pasture. Long ago one of the owners used to pull the bulls off the cows at certain times of the year and pasture them in this triangular shaped pasture - it is an absolutely gorgeous canyon nestled between some really beautiful rocks - loads of grass - of course there were about 15 head that were taking advantage of the grass that had come thru the gate by the vine tank - they took one look at us and took off running. As we explored the pasture keeping the cows in site - they lead us up a steep canyon to another gate - it was closed but they knew exactly where the gate was! Then we turned them around and took them out another gate on the other side. A beautiful ride.
Thursday, July 12, 2007
Spent the 4th moving 30 or so head of cows w/ calves from one pasture to another to relieve some of the water tanks in the pasture. Beforehand we moved some cows/calves for a video - b/c they'll be sold thru a satellite auction later this month. I don't think the video will do justice to how good looking these calves are.
Spent the rest of the afternoon checking waterers and putting out mineral. Late afternoon we went to the pasture to look for a few cows that were missed when the pasture was gathered. Spotted four.
Then on the 5th we moved more cows/calves from one pasture to another. Our herd split on us and when we brought them back together one of the calves couldn't find her mother and had an anxiety attack. I knew we had her mother so I wouldn't let her turn back - but it tore at my heart strings to hear and see this calf cryin for her mother. All went well in a few minutes we arrived at the spring - mother & calf were reunited
Then on the 6th - we went to find the remenents/cows that missed the gathering - as we were unloading the horses one black cow took off running in the opposite direction of where we were taking them. We circled around the pasture - finally got four cows and two calves (two of the mommas were dry) - they wanted NOTHING to do with us - and took off running. We galloped after them and they ran thru another pasture but they knew where to go - we got them back to the pens of course, one of them tried to turn back and after chasing them for sooo long I wasn't about to let that cow go. Dudley cooperated fully and we were able to get them penned.
Then on the 7th - we worked the few calves we had. I got to sort them in the alley - Dudley doesn't particularly like cutting in the alley - I think he feels claustrophobic but I love it.
Sunday, June 24, 2007
This is exactly how I felt this weekend at the ranch. After a grueling and exciting week - I took off for the ranch. I got Dudley saddled up and as I was leaving - I heard, "If you see those two bulls while your out ridin by the creek bring 'em in and pen 'em" Great now I have a mission! I was at the point in my loop that I turn back towards the house when Dudley's ears stood straight up and he stopped dead in his tracks. It was time to make a decision - do I spend the next couple of hours herding the bulls back to the pens or do I head for the house. Of course, I like a good challenge and moving two huge bulls about a mile and half would be fun. So, off we went - the bulls had alot of flies so every chance they got they ran for the thick brush...I had to hoop & holler to keep them moving and of course they don't move in a straight line and every chance they got they would separate and one of them would inevitable turn back! Needless to say it was a GREAT two hours! Dudley was frustrated with the bulls by the time we got back to the pens at the house because they did not fully cooperate - but we got them penned all by ourselves!
Sunday, June 17, 2007
Saturday, June 16, 2007
Sunday, June 10, 2007
Monday, May 28, 2007
Today we moved about 100 cows with calves out of the Barrenda Pasture today. Dudley is so much happier when he has a job to do. Most of the calves mothered up but there were two bull calves that followed up the rear, crying for their mothers and constantly trying to turn back. Even Dudley got frustrated with them. Of course, their mother were up ahead .......I wouldn't want to listen to them either.
We stopped for lunch under a shady tree - and continued moving the cows after lunch. I was in a small valley and couldn't get the cows to move - I had two bulls fighting over cow #73 -
My Horses: Veinte & Dudley
This is Veinte. He is nothing more than a yard ornament these days. In his grand days he was a great working ranch horse - now he barely moves I call him Crip for short. He is named Veinte because he has a 20 branded on hind end.
This is Dudley. He is about nine years old. He got the name Dudley because his mother was a paint and when he was born he did not have any color except a white sock - so they said "What a Dud." He is a really sweet horse, very trusting, wants to please and tries very hard. Horses are just like people - some are really really nice, some are just mean spirited, some have to be yelled and whipped on a bit while others (like Dudley) will respond to just a harsh word....
May 13, 2007:
My parents came to visit this weekend. We toured Fort Bliss - the Military base in El Paso. I had an all access pass so we really toured the entire base! It was great fun hearing Dad's JAG stories and how he learned to write such great commendation letters. I had a great visit with my parents.