Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Cows are not coming home.

Just before Christmas AnnMarie called me at work to tell me the cows were out again. After the last time, she told me I would have to come home and do it as the cause is usually my lack of fencing skills. This time I am happy to say had nothing to do with my actual fencing skills. I forgot to shut the gate after the last time the cows got out. This had not been noticeable because once the snow hits the cows quit wandering. We just had a chinook wind clear off all the snow on the hillside and the grass is green so the cows are wandering.  By the time I got the dressed for the biting wind, got both dogs and got the tractor through three gates the cows had already put them selves back on the correct side of the fence.  
I just had to wire the gate shut. This was the third fence I put up on the place and my rock cribs are falling over. They were too small, too tall and not enough rocks. They are starting to lean precipitously downhill. It's just a matter of time before the gate one collapses. 
So the dogs and I ran down to the other end of the fence by the schoolhouse. There is another loose spot in the fence bordering the CRP. This section has never been touched by me. I have been slowly fixing sections but this far section has had nothing done for 10 years. Looking at it I would say it's more like 30 years. I need to add some more metal T-posts and a bunch of wooden stays. I am short on stays so I will need to get another 500 in 2017. 
Plus, I need a couple more railroad ties or a heavy duty rock crib to pull the fence to so I can get it tight. 
AnnMarie wants me to make an enclosure for the bull. I want to use the barn lot but it means I will need about 25 railroad ties and I am going to have to string a hot wire on the fence. There is no other way I am going to be able to keep him in. Even after reinforcing the fence short of a huge wooden corral and that is cost prohibitive.