All Aboard Harvest | Laura: Kansas Complete
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Laura: Kansas Complete

Laura: Kansas Complete

Sheridan County, Kansas – It has been humid lately. And by humid, I mean western Kansas humid, not eastern Kansas humid. The day I was there it was downright sweltering with temperatures in the high 90s and almost no wind. Yes, it’s not common out here to have little to no wind.

Out in that heat is where I met Stoney, a semi-retired farmer, whom wanted to come check out the “big harvest.” It has been something on his to-do list for some time, and he drove 8 hours from the east to come watch. That is REAL desire to come watch harvest on a hot July day! Of course they have harvest east of us; but the fields are often smaller, and there isn’t as much wheat in his area. The scale out west is just different. Here, the field sizes are often so much bigger, and they can hold a larger number of machines, larger headers, etc. It is a little humbling to think that someone would want to visit “US.” In my mind, we just do what we do, but I guess it is no different than me going to see other sectors of agriculture, like the strawberry patch earlier in the season.  I think we as farmers and ranchers, of whatever type, typically have a great respect for the profession and enjoy seeing and learning what goes on in other areas different than out our own backdoor.

It took a little while for Mark and the crew to get in the field. They kept catching rains that delayed things a bit. But once they got in, they really rocked. This was another area affected by the late season blizzard. The wheat was very good despite that, and dryland acres yielded in the 60-80 bushel range.

While home, this portion of the crew celebrated two birthdays, Willem and Mark’s wife, Jill. They also got to shoot fireworks off, which is never a given for the crew since we often work through the holidays. When it’s time to cut, we have to cut! I think they also enjoyed a few days out of the camper, since they could stay at headquarters.

The crew with Mark has since moved north and have just started cutting in Montana. The crew with Ryan just started cutting in northeast Colorado.

High Plains Harvesting (Laura)

It may look flat, but this field had some terraces. (Photo Credit: Laura)

High Plains Harvesting (Laura)

The dust just seemed to hang in the air on this day. (Photo Credit: Laura)

High Plains Harvesting (Laura)

Three combines were working this field. (Photo Credit: Laura)

High Plains Harvesting - Laura

The dust just hung in the air. (Photo Credit: Laura)

High Plains Harvesting - Laura

The kids took the opportunity to go for a pretend joy ride while I was talking to Stoney. This is a cute picture now, but terrifies me for about 13ish years down the road. It sums up their personalities really well. (Photo credit: Laura)

HPH Jill

Looks like a great celebration dinner to me! (Photo credit: Jill)

HPH Mark

I hope you had a nice birthday, Willem. Jill, I hope the boys treated you equally well on YOUR birthday! (Photo Credit: Mark)

High Plains Harvesting (James)

Headed to Montana. (Photo credit: James)

High Plains Harvesting (Mark)

A beautiful scene in Montana! (Photo credit: Mark)


All Aboard Wheat Harvest™ is sponsored by High Plains Journal and John Deere. Laura can be reached at laura@allaboardharvest.com.

2 Comments
  • Doug Buell
    Posted at 17:33h, 14 July

    I enjoyed your write up of the John Deere harvest very much . I hope you will do this again , I am a John Deere retire ee I worked for the John Deere dealer at Holyoke Co for the Summer in 1963 I love to see pictures of the wide open prairie s with our combines in them .
    Doug Buell

    • Laura Haffner
      Posted at 14:14h, 16 July

      Thanks so much, Doug! The wide open prairie shots are some of my favorite too! 🙂