Scott: A Bin Bustin’ Crop

Scott Clark’s crew finished harvesting in Goodland, Kan., and has been looking for more wheat to harvest while waiting for the crop to mature in South Dakota.

Weather is rarely predictable. However; many people in northwest Kansas could have probably told you it was going to rain this last week. The sky has been filled with clouds and a storm has been rolling through this area every evening for the last 10 days. Some areas have seen over five inches of rain, while Texas, Oklahoma and parts of southern Kansas seem to be exceeding 100 degrees each day with no rain in sight. We managed to finish our job in Goodland on Friday before another storm arrived. That seems to be a common theme for us this year as we’ve finished three stops just prior to major storms. The wheat made 60 to 85 bushels per acre and tested 60 to 64 pounds per bushel. These yields put a smile on the face of all involved with getting the crop out of the field, and into the bin.

Another big storm moved into the Goodland area on Saturday and rotation was even sighted prompting the tornado sirens to sound throughout town. We parked some of our vehicles under sheds and stayed near the tornado shelter. Finally the sirens ceased and the storm moved on, producing nothing more than rain, strong winds, and small hail.

It’s frustrating that the weather has so much control over our business and decision making, but when wheat is dry enough to be harvested we can’t let anything stop us from getting the crop out – including wet ground conditions. We invest thousands of dollars in our combines to equip them so we can run in seemingly impossible conditions and each day we have to wait brings another chance of a storm that can damage or destroy a crop.

As a service provider there’s nothing worse than having a client lose his or her crop and knowing you could have done something to prevent it. Being farmers ourselves, we understand the importance of getting the crop out quickly. Even a light rain will cause a decrease in the crop’s test weight and hurt the farmer’s bottom line. Sometimes there just isn’t anything you can do about losing a crop, but at the end of the day—we’ll always know we did the best we could and if we couldn’t get the crop out, then no one could have.

We’ll begin moving some of our equipment up to South Dakota later this week and begin polishing truck wheels and waxing the paint off the trucks to stay busy until we find some dry wheat to cut.

Combines roll across the field harvesting 80 bushel wheat near St. Francis, Kan.

After finishing the last field of our Goodland stop, a combine maneuvers out of the field and heads for the farm.

The combines rode back to the home base before the rain arrives.

A storms looms overhead—many storms have come through the area in the past several days.

The crew poses for a quick picture while sporting their new AAWH Crew shirts. Left to Right: Randy, Kevin, Justin, Garrett, Dalton, Jesse, and Travis.

For more information contact All Aboard 2011 is sponsored by High Plains Journal and DuPont Crop Protection.

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