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Janel: Best In The West

Western Kansas –I’ve seen western Kansas produce good wheat before but this year the wheat has got to be breaking records. Last year was a drought so it’s always interesting to see how Mother Nature can demonstrate such extremes with drought or plentiful moisture during the growing season and then us harvesters adapt to whatever she gives us.

The very high yielding wheat is consistent throughout all of the fields we’re harvesting.  It is just a beautiful wheat crop that we wish we could have every year.  The wheat has been yielding in the high 80s, 90s and even into the 100 plus bushels per acre and the test weights 61 to 63 pounds per bushel.  The protein 12.5 percent.  Overall, the crop here is tremendous and way more than I was expecting.  The Shelbourne Reynolds blue headers are the best way to harvest 100 bushel wheat.  It’s the best header made for this kind of wheat that is for sure.  The combine doesn’t lose rpm’s and 4 miles per hour is common and it does a very nice job.  It works very well.

Between this job and the high yields I think I’ve found the best in the west.  The fields and the roads are nice here.  The elevator and the people in this tiny Kansas town we’re harvesting near are so great too.  Once again, Kansas has impressed me.  I have always said that I love the Kansas wheat harvest.  It’s beautiful here on the high plains and the fields I’ve gotten to harvest lately are very nice in my opinion.  There are no terraces or ditches to cut out and each field is a square quarter or half section.  We can just set the autotrac and have a continuous routine with the tractor grain carts.  The fields are just flat and smooth too except for the badger holes.  Those feel like annoying speed bumps in the field.

We’ve had good harvesting conditions too.  We start up mid morning and cut til late at night.  No heavy dews here.  The ground is dry and it has been in the 90s nearly every day.  Our forecast is clear too.  We’ll finish up here and then move up the road to northeast Colorado to harvest more wheat.

All Aboard Wheat Harvest is sponsored by High Plains Journal and John Deere.  Janel Schemper can be reached at janel@allaboardharvest.com.


A beautiful evening of harvesting wheat in western Kansas.


It rained and hailed south and east of us but luckily we got to keep on working.


Miss Moo demonstrating how tall the wheat and stripped wheat is this year.


A comparison of stripped wheat and ready to be harvested wheat.


I sent Sierra this picture while waiting on a truck.


Sierra sent me this picture of her waiting on a truck.  She’s in southwest Nebraska harvesting wheat.


Our combines and blue headers and Miss Moo.


She is a cardigan corgi/border collie mix and is so smart and very comical.  She keeps me laughing.  So funny, Moo!


Sterling’s 4th birthday!  He opened presents in the field!


These three brothers were arguing over toys when I went to visit with them.


My combine shadow and super good wheat.


That’s us harvesting wheat!  Photo by JC Schemper.


My combine shadow and very good wheat.


The high yields keep the truck drivers busy.


Miss Moo ready for her combine ride!


Harvesting wheat in western Kansas.


Miss Moo loves combine time too!


Harvesting wheat.


No time for anything but work!


big time corn crop on the way too.  It’s looking great!


That’s a lot of blue and green!


Our demo grain cart!  An Elmer’s 1300 bushel haulmaster cart.


Shut down for the night and the stars shining bright!


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