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Megan: Looking for a Rainbow

It seems to be the general consensus among a number of harvest crews scattered between the Nebraska, Kansas and Colorado borders that the weather does not want to cooperate with us for the time being. Imperial, our current stop, has seen many rounds of rain during the last eight days. Last night the area received over an inch of rain along with heavy winds and horrendous thunder and lightning. The puddles around town and out in the fields are beginning to turn into small lakes. Having personally endured many years of drought at home and on the road we don’t want to curse the rain by any means. However, the rain is certainly slowing us down and beginning to wear on our spirits.

Late yesterday afternoon, we did catch a bit of a break as it finally dried out enough for us to begin harvesting for a while. Our crew is currently split up since we are working for a few different customers in the area. With one combine, Brandon is working with one of our farmer’s who is running his own combine. The rest of the crew is working about 20 miles away for a different farmer. We were able to get about two truckloads of wheat cut before the rain let loose.  Brandon also had a fairly successful day, cutting out about 140 acres before the rain hit his field.

Today has been very overcast and cooler out so it seems as if we’re just going to have to wait it out another day. The forecast is calling for a chance of rain tonight and tomorrow but it looks like sunny skies for a few days after that. Hopefully, the weather will begin to cooperate with us and all the other crews out there waiting for the wheat to dry down. An unknown author once said, “You must up with the rain if want to enjoy the rainbow.”

Puddle on side of field
A view of the field Dad and I were able to begin cutting yesterday. We started on the opposite side of the field so we wouldn’t have to fight the mud.

Down wheat
Due to the large amount of rain the area has received this summer much of the wheat is lodged or “down.”

Tracks into field
These are the tracks pulling into the field this morning. It was too muddy for the service truck to even make it to the combine to put fuel in it.

Lake in field
The puddle in the middle of Brandon’s field grew into a “mini lake” over night.

Down wheat and lake
Another view of the lake and more “down wheat” in Brandon’s field.

Brandon and farmer's equipment
Brandon’s combine parked by the farmer’s grain cart and combine. The grain cart is parked downhill so the water will drain off the tarp and not settle in the auger.

Water in tracks
Yesterday this side of the field was a little too muddy to try to cut out. The combine pulled out in hopes of coming back in a couple days after the mud hole dried out. After last night’s rain, standing water fills the combine tracks.

Boys at Enders Lake
After checking out our fields today we stopped to explore at Enders Reservoir, located southeast of Imperial. Dad, James and Brandon act tough as they pose in front of the spillway.

Megan can be reached at megan@allaboardharvest.com. All Aboard 2011 is sponsored by High Plains Journal and DuPont Crop Protection.

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