A Cowpunching Payday

Due to all the rain this spring we were about 30 days later than usual on getting our spring calves to market.  The prices for beef for sale is at record highs, roughly $3 / pound, and Hugh Leigh has been anxious to be able to take advantage of the situation.  As my cows all had bull calves my choices were to sell them or eat them, as there can only be one bull per herd of 25 cows or the bulls can create havoc among themselves unless one only has bulls in a pasture.

Again Fred and I were the main people in the pen with the cattle sorting and loading them.  Fred before things got quite hectic was able to take these pictures of me working the cattle in the pen.

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As the sorting got going, with the mommas herded out of the pen a couple at a time, we needed an extra hand in the pen with us rookies and Gigi came in to help.  That helped us finish the job quickly.  Then the rest of the fun began as the calves were directed into the chute, two fences close enough to each other the only direction for them to go was towards the waiting cattle trailer and the ‘punching’ began.  As they don’t really want to jump into the trailer a little coaxing is needed with the sorter stick, and sometimes even a shoulder to push them forward and upward.

Once they are loaded it is about an hours ride to Jackson where the sale barn is located.  The unloading is much easier as they are anxious to get out of the trailer and back on terra firma.  The workers there get the cattle weighed as directed, either one at a time or all together.  Gigi likes one at a time so as to record each cows weight for reference.

While this is happening we wait in the office.  This time while making small talk the subject of cars came up and the office manager perked up when the talk turned to cars of our youth.  Her favorite car was her ’64 yellow hard top Super Sport. She just kept smiling as she talked about it.  We also got her smiling when talking about the chickens she raised when it was mentioned that HL’s grand-daughter that was with us was helping with the chickens that the Mathews have started to raise.

We all smiled when we saw the checks for our cows when they were presented to us when the tickets came in with the weights and payment was processed.


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