High Plains Journal All Aboard Wheat Harvest

Category Archives: Videos

Combine Cam connects us to the world
Combine Cam connects us to the world avatar

By Tracy Zeorian
Technology is an amazing tool for any business. But it’s especially good if you’ve got a story to tell and you want the world to know about it. Your story can be told to the entire world if given the proper tool. Technology is sometimes used as a negative resource, but I would like to believe that I’m a “glass-half-full” person and see it as being good.

Agriculture has a story to tell. One the consumer needs to hear about. It’s the story about where their food comes from. As we all know, too many people are basing their decisions on opinions, books and well thought out marketing campaigns.

We, the custom harvester, have a story to tell and High Plains Journal is giving us that opportunity in a rather large way. The story of our lifestyle and how our involvement in the process of getting grain from the field to market was first exposed in 2009. This was the year the Journal created the All Aboard Wheat Harvest program.

I’m going to get a little personal with you for a minute before I continue with my story. Sometimes in life, you are given opportunities to do something that may seem a bit risky or unsure. Those are the times I think you need to step out of the boat. It’s scary being at the edge of the boat, lifting your leg and placing your foot on the water. It takes a lot of faith to make that first step. That’s when you hold your breath and do it anyway having the faith that God led you to the edge of the boat and He’ll keep you from drowning.

This is exactly what our family has done since Jenna was given the opportunity to be one of the first All Aboard Wheat Harvest correspondents. It was scary as heck knowing that we were about to expose our family to the entire world. What it has done, however, is given us the opportunity to tell the story of the custom harvester and our importance in grain agriculture. Since that first door opened in 2009, we have been led to more scary doors and have chosen to continue to walk through them. Have we ever second guessed and wondered if it was the right thing to do? Absolutely!

We have been given yet another opportunity that some may say we are absolutely crazy to have agreed to. This spring, Holly Martin of High Plains Journal asked our family if we would agree to place a camera inside the cab of our combine. The idea was to live stream what was happening in the field on a day to day basis. This has never been done before (that we know of) and would give the consumer another way to see the process of getting their food to their table. This would also give Zeorian Harvesting the chance to better tell the story.

I was a teeny tiny bit afraid to mention the email to Jim. I was afraid he was going to say, “Enough!” I wasn’t expecting him to agree and to actually understand how this would be a useful tool in continuing what had begun in 2009. After I let Holly know we were good with the idea, she lined up Kiowa County Media Center to get the camera and necessary equipment placed in the combine before we left home for the summer.

Next step was to try the system out. I think all of us who have been involved since the initial idea were holding our breath when I turned that camera on for the first time. The whole while I was trying to figure it all out, I was either texting or emailing Holly and Grant. When the link to watch it on the website was given to us, the next email I get from Holly reads, “IT IS SO AWESOME!!!!!!!!!! SERIOUSLY! I’M TYPING IN ALL CAPS. Wave to HPJ friends!!” I think she was a wee bit excited.

Personally, I don’t understand the excitement—it’s just what we do. It’s what we see every day that we’re in the wheat field. What I have to remember is that not EVERYONE gets that chance to see a wheat field like I do and to watch the combine chomp its way through the acres. What I have to remember is not EVERYONE has had the opportunity to watch the combine’s grain bin fill. What I have to remember is not EVERYONE has experienced the hot, windy days of summer wheat harvest.

Combine Cam will now give EVERYONE that opportunity—as long as we have good cell service. It may be “iffy” with the places that we go (especially Colorado). There won’t be any streaming if we’re not in the field due to rain or if we’re moving. But, any other time, you will actually ride along with me or Jim as we’re in the field.

The official launch was made late Wednesday afternoon (6/24). On Thursday, I was receiving tweets on my Twitter account from people letting me know they were watching me in the field. How cool is that? My favorite tweet of the day was from a follower in Holland: “Lovely idea to follow you combining live. Greetings from Holland, where harvest is 2 months away.” Perfect illustration of how small our big ‘ole world is becoming!

We ALL have a story to tell. Step out of that boat and start telling yours! Consumers need to know the truth about their food. Something other than the scary things they read about in social media and they see on YouTube. Thank you, Holly—and High Plains Journal—for giving us the opportunity to tell ours!

If you’ve got a moment or two and want to see what the Z Crew is up to today, visit us and the other correspondents at the All Aboard Wheat Harvest blog. If you’re a “tweeter,” follow me (@newheatie) and ask for a wave. If I’m in the cab and I can, I most certainly will wave back.

Click here to watch the live streaming Combine Cam.

If you were watching the Combine Cam on Thursday, you would have seen me take this picture.

“We just wanna work!”
Steph Osowski

 Our journey has ended in one sense but has only just begun in another. Osowski Ag Service rolled into the city limits of Hobart, Oklahoma, around noon yesterday, which completed our initial trip down but means we can finally get started harvesting! Without a minute to spare, we “threw” the camper into its spot at the campground and headed straight to the field. There were a few instances in the whole “straight” to the field part where I had to peel Dad away from different people from town he wanted to sit and gab all day long with, but my persistence won out each time. I tell you what, that guy is so dang social. However, when you harvest in a town for almost 30 years, everyone welcomes you back like family. Brandon and I just couldn’t wait to get back to work! The suspense was too much to bear.

We had what we thought was going to be quite the mechanical issue today. Brandon was making the first round of the field and all of a sudden, the combine came to a halt. We’d had an instance like this before and ended up needing to replace the transmission, so that was our first thought, as dark of a thought as it was. However, after making a few phone calls and taking a gander into the owner’s manual, we discovered a wire from the hydraulic motor had rubbed and was showing. Dad quickly put a connector on the wire and we were back up and running in no time!

As for our yields for today, we were a little bit scattered across the board. Yields were anywhere from 15 to 45 bushels per acre. The last field of the night before we shut down was consistently 40 though, so hopefully the fields will continue to progress from here on out. Test weights were around 60 pounds consistently.

Quote of the Day“He has the personality of a woodtick.”

Hello there, Oklahoma.

Hello there, Oklahoma.

A funny little anecdote from this morning: We were all getting saddled up in our respective rig for the duration of the trip to Hobart when Brandon says on the radio, “Mother Nature must have washed my windows for me, they are so clean!” Without missing a beat, Dad responds with, “Actually that would be me who washed your windows. All those bugs on there were driving me nuts.” I promise you that this whole “Mother Nature washing my windows” thing will be a long-running joke.

Getting ready to unload the header!

Dad getting the header ready to be unloaded.

A little teamwork going on with mom and dad.

A little teamwork.

Our very first wheat of the 2015 harvest going in!!

First round!!

First round of harvest 2015!

Meeting of the minds - Dad, Farmer Mike and Brandon

Meeting of the minds on the end of the field: Dad, Farmer Mike and Brandon.

A little technical issue.

A little technical issue.

We had a wire rub through today that thankfully was a simple fix; just needed a connector end.

Thankfully, a connector was the solution.

Cleaning out Purple extra good before she gets loaded.

Cleaning out Purple extra well before she gets loaded up!

Lone Wolf water tower. We haul to the elevator there!

Water tower in Lone Wolf, the town we haul to.

Dad coming through the dust.

Dad coming through the dust—turned out so cool!

Feels great to be back in the field!

Finishing up a round.

Scale ticket from Lone Wolf.

Scale ticket from today.

Also, quick shout-out to Dennis from Anthony, Kansas! We were both in line getting some nutritious supper at McDonald’s and he kindly told me that he recognized me and Purple coming through town and that he enjoys reading All Aboard.

All Aboard Wheat Harvest™ is sponsored by High Plains Journal and New Holland Agriculture. You can contact Steph at stephanie@allaboardharvest.com.

Leslie from AAWH
Emma Misener

 We are cutting wheat! This field is the first and the last field of wheat we will be cutting in 2014. What a way to end the season. I find it quite fitting given this year’s conditions. Enjoy the video!

All Aboard Wheat Harvest™ is sponsored by High Plains Journal and New Holland Agriculture. Emma can be reached at emma@allaboardharvest.com

How to move a huge tire properly
Emma Misener

 Dan has first-hand experience moving large machinery tires. Sometimes when we repair machines, removing the tires is a requirement to gain access. These big tires are 30.5 x 32 which means they are 30.5 inches wide and the rim is 32 inches in diameter. They are around six feet tall and weigh about 1,250 -1,500 pounds per tire with the rim intact. So, they are BIG! Moving them properly is a must. You can easily get crushed if you do not know what you are doing. Safety is the number one priority.

Be safe and God bless!

All Aboard Wheat Harvest™ is sponsored by High Plains Journal and New Holland Agriculture. Emma can be reached at emma@allaboardharvest.com.

Emma: How does a torch work?
Emma Misener

EmmaIn my previous post, I had a video on how to fix a tricky bearing. While we were fixing it, my niece Elizabeth asked “How exactly does a torch work?” Here’s the answer to her question.

Be safe and God bless!

All Aboard Wheat Harvest™ is sponsored by High Plains Journal and New Holland Agriculture. Emma can be reached at emma@allaboardharvest.com.

Emma: My First Video 2014
Emma Misener

EmmaMy first video blog of 2014!

I love writing for AAWH but there is just something about video that reaches people on a different level. Sure you can add emotion to a written something, but there is nothing like being able to watch, listen, see and feel when you are watching a video. I feel like I am talking directly to each of you.

My first video taken in my home state, beautiful Oklahoma.

I hope there are many more rains to come. We are one day closer!

Be safe and God bless!

All Aboard Wheat Harvest™ is sponsored by High Plains Journal and New Holland AgricultureEmma can be reached at emma@allaboardharvest.com

Emma: Little Man Leslie
Emma Misener

Emma_thumbnailI was looking through some pictures taken this year, and came across a video I completely forgot about.

While we were cutting in Texas, we had a small break down in the field. It required about a 10-minute fix. My nephew Leslie was with us because he loves to ride in the combine. He tugged at my shirt and said to me, “Emma, can we make a video for All Aboard? The All Aboard people need to know how to fix this!”

So here is Leslie’s video for All Aboard. Enjoy!

Be safe and God bless!

All Aboard Wheat Harvest is sponsored by High Plains Journal and Syngenta.
Emma can be reached at emma@allaboardharvest.com

Z Crew: Packing Update & Oklahoma Video
Z Crew

headshot2 Manley, NE- The last week around the Zeorian house has been packed with…packing. The trailer house has been moved from the backyard to the driveway. So you know what that means? Walking out to the trailer every time you need something. Even a bowl of cereal. If everything goes as planned, we hope to hit the road tomorrow (Tues. June 11).

Callie and I have been taking advantage of the time we have here at home to say goodbye to friends. It’s difficult coming to the realization our “normal” summer will be starting tomorrow but we’re all ready to hit the open road.

Below, I put together a video of me and Dad’s first trip south last week! Please enjoy!

The Z Crew can be reached at zcrew@allaboardharvest.com. All Aboard Wheat Harvest™ is sponsored by High Plains Journal and Syngenta.