All Aboard Harvest | Laura: High Plains
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Laura: High Plains

Extreme Southeast Colorado – I have to admit. We entered my favorite part of the season as far as the travel route goes.  We are here on the High Plains. It’s not that I don’t like the other places we go. That’s far from it. Each place has something unique and special to offer. It’s just that this is HOME. The later part of my growing-up years happened here, as did some of my adult life. Ryan still has to hear about how he took me away from southwest Kansas when we got married, which I’m sure he really appreciates. My heart will always be where my family is, but the High Plains will always have a piece of my heart. In fact, I may be willing to move my heart back if anyone is willing to donate a nice little farmstead to my cause.

Enough gushing.

After I found my way to the field from the “Big Bin,” I thought we would only have a few minutes to watch the action before turning right back to head to the camper. There was a storm on the way. If you haven’t had the chance to watch a storm roll in on the High Plains, you’re missing out. It is a beautiful and sometimes scary sight. In the end, we somehow only ended up with a few sprinkles at the field – not enough to shut down. And as if getting to watch the storm dance around us wasn’t enough, we were treated to the sight of a rainbow to the south.

HPH 2017 (Laura)

“I wish her life could always be the goodness of golden wheat fields, country roads and rainbows, but it won’t. I hope somewhere in all the craziness we are planting the seeds of a strong work ethic, love and respect for life, land, and animals, honesty, as well as grit which will serve her well in life’s storms AND rainbows. For that, this will be worth it.” (Quote and self portrait: Laura)

The quote and picture above is from a recent social media post. When I wrote it, I meant it for Lady A, but I’ve actually had to really take it to heart myself as of late. Agriculture is stormy at the moment and life is a little bit of a rollercoaster ride. Volatile crop prices, lost acres, the blessing of picking some acres up, machinery issues, crew dynamics, pop-up storms, so much hail, drought, too much rain, good wheat, poor wheat, limited family time, and the list could go on. And you know what? I can’t do a darn thing about the majority of it. I’m a “do-er” and “go-getter” by nature, so this is an ongoing, hard lesson for me. I can just keep my head up and do my responsibilities the best I can. I can let go and have faith that the rest will work out as the Almighty intends it. It’s a daily surrender that I’m better at some days than others.

If you are patiently waiting for the wheat stats, thanks for hanging on through “Life by Laura.” You’ve finally made it. The wheat we’ve cut in southeastern Colorado is dry land (nonirrigated). We’ve seen yields range from the 30s to the mid 50s bushels per acre. Test weights are strong and in the low 60s. The cutting conditions were excellent.

Below are some photos of my short visit to the crew.

HPH 2017 (Laura)

Reunited and it feels so good! (Photo Credit: Laura)

HPH 2017 (Laura)

The lightning got a little close for mom’s liking, so we watched from the truck for a little while. (Photo Credit: Laura)

HPH 2017 (Laura)

They say biting flies is a sign of rain. On this night, it was true! They were horrendous! And yes, I realize wearing jeans and boots would have taken care of my discomfort. (Photo Credit: Laura)

HPH 2017 (Laura)

A few sprinkles weren’t enough to shut us down on this night. (Photo Credit: Laura)

HPH 2017 - Laura

Storm on the prairie. (Photo Credit: Laura)

HPH 2017 (Laura)

To change the lyrics slightly, “Somewhere, under the rainbow, combines drive!” (Photo credit: Laura)

HPH 2017 (Laura)

What’s not to love about rainbows? (Photo credit: Laura)

HPH 2017 (Laura)

It was an amazing experience to watch this herd of antelope pass in the field next to us. (Photo Credit: Laura)

HPH 2017 (Laura)

The bulk of the storm passed to the south and east. (Photo Credit: Laura)

HPH 2017 (Laura)

The “Big Bin” after the storm.  (Photo Credit: Laura)

HPH 2017 - (Laura)

More weather building in the northwest. (Photo credit: Laura)

HPH 2017 (Laura)

Another storm started blowing up in the north. (Photo Credit: Laura)

All Aboard Wheat Harvest™ is sponsored by High Plains Journal and John Deere. Laura can be reached at


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