South Dakota rainfall benefits Clark Farms

Guest correspondent Scott Clark checks in from soggy South Dakota this week. Scott talks about the extremely wet conditions in the Huron, S.D. area and some rather interesting excursions Kevin had with a combine header — and a pond.

A foot of standing water in wheat fields keeps combines sitting idle, and this past week was no exception for machines around the Huron, S.D., area.

Clark Farms bolted on the duals a week ago Sunday and went to work. Kevin and his four-wheel-drive machines with flotation tires can get any crop out when the will to work is there. Kevin was able to pick up a couple extra jobs in the area, and there is no better advertisement than getting to a crop when nobody else can.

Minus the rim-deep mud and water and a stuck combine here and there, it was a pretty quiet week for the crew. There was one incident with Kevin, a hot header and a pond. Yes, I said a pond. Kevin realized his header was on fire, and tried to extinguish it to no avail. He decided to do the next best thing — hop in and drive it into a pond.

Kevin was lucky he was able to have caught the fire early enough that it didn’t do much damage other than scorch the draper belt on the header and burn up some straw. The culprit was a bearing that had gotten hot, and with all of the wet and green straw it ignited some chaff.

The pond may have sounded like a good idea at the time, but after putting out the fire Kevin discovered he couldn’t climb back up the slippery bank to get out and had to be pulled out with the grain cart. It was an interesting adventure to say the least.

The crew cleaned up, loaded up, and rolled back toward Pierre where a spring wheat job waited. Two machines went ahead and headed north to North Dakota where the wheat crop is expected to be ready to harvest this weekend.

The North Dakota crop sounds as if it won’t be a disappointment with expected yields of at least 40 to 60 bushels per acre. We anticipate about three weeks in North Dakota to wrap up the jobs we have lined up. My mom and sister will leave around Aug. 20 to head back to Kiowa, Kan., as school resumes. The crew is optimistic it can reunite in a central location before Mom and Kassidy leave.

The summer is coming to a screeching halt for me as well. I will finish up my summer projects and fly out of Iowa on Aug. 20 because classes start for me at Oklahoma State on Aug. 23. I am hopeful that this fall I may be up to visit the crew and help them as the need arises, but for now it’s time to shift gears and get back to school.

I’ll be back with a report on the crop there as the crews fire up the harvest in that area.



The truck drivers lend Chief a hand to get his combine running again.


Kevin takes a swim in the pond to extinguish the header fire.








Louis loses the battle to the mud and has to call for backup.


Farmers come by to inquire about harvesting and doing a little “trash talking”.


Kevin, Chief and Eugene clean and prepare the machine to be loaded.


After being cleaned, a combine waits for the North Dakota harvest.


The crew takes the duals off the combines.







The guys take advantage of the forklift to load the duals on the combine.







Kevin guides Chief and the combine onto the trailer.


Two machines head for North Dakota.

For more information contact crew@allaboardharvest. All Aboard 2010 Wheat Harvest is sponsored by High Plains Journal and DuPont Crop Protection.


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