Pierre, South Dakota – We made the big trip from Western Nebraska up to the Pierre, South Dakota area, and there is definitely a big ole drought going on. I was told that there really hasn’t been any rain at home in Nebraska since May, and South Dakota looks to be the same way. I could see the drought results as I traveled across Kansas, Nebraska and South Dakota last week. Kansas looked alright, but as soon as I was in Nebraska I could see it. And it became worse as I traveled into South Dakota.
On the way up here we ran into road construction at Mission, South Dakota. There was a sign at Valentine, Nebraska that said road construction and width restriction 31 miles ahead. We asked around in Valentine; and everyone said they had seen lots of combines going north, and we could get through there. We got up to Mission, and there it was. There they were working on the main street that we travel, and our wide loads couldn’t fit through because of the cones. I wonder how many combines have just been hauled through there anyway. A local was nice enough to stop and tell us to turn around at the school, go back a mile and then head west on the gravel. Then at the dead end, go north up to Highway 18 and we would be back on the right track again to Highway 83 north. There was no detour route sign anywhere. For goodness sakes, why not?
However, someday I’d like to stay in Valentine, Nebraska for a day or two and go on a Niobrara River floating trip. I’d like to tube, tank, canoe and just enjoy the river once! There is quite the scenic wilderness with Nebraska’s Niobrara River, and I’d like to check it all out sometime. My mom and I stopped in the boot store in Valentine, and the lady helping us offered to take us to the river and would let us tube or tank. She was genuinely friendly, but we didn’t have time to take her up on her offer.
When I was little I remember South Dakota being full of wheat fields and sunflower fields. It was so beautiful, especially all of the blooming sunflower fields. Now it’s full of corn, soybeans, sunflowers, wheat and other crops. Right now the sunflowers are extremely short, and there is no flower on the plant yet. Without rain, the sunflowers probably won’t make it. The corn looks like it’s about to burn up, and with the heat and wind it won’t last much longer. The soybeans are short too. The winter wheat is short and thin, and some has been baled. I did hear of low bushel wheat, but the test weights and protein have been high. There is spring wheat that does look decent though. What’s it going to be? We are soon to find out what it’ll make. Stay tuned!
All Aboard Wheat Harvest™
is sponsored by High Plains Journal
and John Deere. Janel Schemper can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org