03 Oct Lindsey: Back to reality!
Cheyenne, OK – We wrapped up our wheat harvest season on September 11 in Cut Bank, Montana. The timing of harvest almost always differs from year to year, but I think this was the longest season we have ever had. It’s been full of highs and lows, ups and downs, the good, the bad and the ugly…which is just the nature of the beast. I hear often that the harvest trail isn’t for the faint of heart, and I couldn’t agree more. In spite of it all, we’re truly thankful for every acre we’ve run across this summer!
When we finished up in Nebraska in early August, the crew headed on to Hardin, Montana while the kids and I headed home. Mason started Pre-K this year! This was a new scenario for us, as we’ve never had to split up our family during harvest. There are many alternatives to going home for school, but none that we felt were a good fit for us. We’ve always had it in mind to come home when it was time for school, and that’s what we did. Mason is loving everything about school, but naturally recess seems to be his favorite subject so far.
Our crew spent 30 days in Hardin. Aside from a few rainy days they were able to make a hard run while they were there. The wheat yield averaged around 80 bu/ac. We had a new opportunity this year in Cut Bank, so when the work was done in Hardin our guys ventured further north to the “Coldest Spot in the Nation!” They harvested winter and spring wheat and saw an average yield of 60 bu/ac. When it was time to load up and head home, there was a 1,500 mile journey back to Oklahoma. It’s easy to forget just how far you are from home as you ease your way North during the summer!
I wouldn’t call wheat harvest a vacation by any stretch, but as farmers and ranchers the return home greets us with an endless to-do list: work ground, plant wheat, strip cotton, gear-up for fall harvest, sort and work calves, etc. It’s a quick trip back to reality!
I’d like to thank Jon and Josh for all of their help and hard work this summer! This business requires us to put a lot of trust and confidence in our workers, and they’ve both gone above and beyond for us. Jason’s folks, Jim and Sherri, certainly make being away from home for so long doable. We couldn’t do this without them! Custom harvesting is a team effort and I think we’ve got some of the best players out there.
It’s been a pleasure to share our journey with you, the readers, this summer. I think we have a great collection of correspondents that give you a glimpse into a good variety of harvest operations and it’s an honor to be a part of it. Happy trails to you!
All Aboard Wheat Harvest is sponsored by High Plains Journal and John Deere. Lindsey can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.