“There’s nothing better than riding a good horse through new country.” -Augustus McCrae

October 29, 2008 by  

A good horse overlooking new country

A good horse overlooking new country.

The trail ahead

A few days ago, on the most perfect of Fall mornings, Del and I saddled up and rode off through some new, beautiful, and rugged country.  To the casual obserever it would have looked like just a couple guys taking their colts out for a joy ride.  We were, however on official business.  Our bred heifers are grazing a pasture 4 – 5 miles from the point these pictures were taken.  Our mission is to drive them home through those hills after the grazing season is over.  It may have looked like we were just having fun but we were scouting the trail.  The first thing we came upon were tracks that were very fresh and looked like yearling cattle.  We assumed my neighbor who summers in that pasture must have left 10 – 15 head behind.  When we got to the first gate the tracks just went right up and over and kept going.  Must have been a nice bunch of elk and we were not very far behind them, but we never saw them.  So Del and I aren’t going to make much money as professional trackers; but as trail scouts… we might just do that for free.  We had a great time.

BREAKING NEWS!

The Bull Sale catalog is at the printer and should mail late this week or early next week.  I expect the online version to be up later today.

Taking pictures

October 17, 2008 by  

Brandon came out on Tuesday and we took pictures of the sale bulls.

It was a beautiful day and I was riding Little Joe Pat.  It was slow work and really good for a colt.

Kurt was riding Cisco again.  I caught Kurt yawning a couple times…I think he was hoping for some real work with a little more action.

Brandon is our picture/web site/video/catalog guy and he is a whiz with technology and creativity.  The bulls are looking good and the catalog should be done soon.

Semen Testing

October 7, 2008 by  

Measuring the hip height

Measuring the hip height

Today we semen tested our 28 sale bulls.  It was a beautiful day and the bulls worked really well.  They were very quiet and calm.  In the above picture Del is measuring the hip height and the bull is trying to act taller than he is.

The Vet, Kurt, and Rex the Dog

The Vet, Kurt, and Rex the Dog

The vet brought his ‘Silencer’.  What a great chute,  I wonder how many mama cows an outfit would need to justify owning this baby.   The only drawback is the gas engine that runs the pump needs a silencer on it.

Kurt working the Bud Box

Kurt working the Bud Box

Here is Kurt and Cisco running the Bud Box that Kurt and I built last summer.  The bulls filed right through.

Taking the bulls back to pasture

Del and George taking the bulls back to pasture along with Ring the dog.

I wonder…

October 5, 2008 by  

If a fella had a really good Shoshone cow, say like this one:

SHOSHONE PRUDENCE 6157

SHOSHONE PRUDENCE 6157

and you mated her to a Wye bull like this one:

FRIARS OF WYE UMF 7996

FRIARS OF WYE UMF 7996

I wonder what you would get?

Introducing:  M C C LOGAN #16048020

Logan is our latest herd bull acquisition.  He is a two year old bull, and he has the look of a great female producer.  He is a slick haired, clean made bull with excellent feet, structure and balance.  He has a quiet, intelligent disposition.  Check back in a few weeks and I’ll try to post some pictures.

Logan is co-owned with Greg Matney of Lusk, WY

MARRYING UP!!!

October 2, 2008 by  

Welcome to John’s Ranching blog.  This will be where I discuss the day to day activities, the people, and animals, and events that happen around here.  I’ll also post on things that happen to interest me at the time and things I remember from the past.  So with that in mind you might be wondering at the title of this first post.

I graduated from High School in 1985.  I was a farm/ranch kid growing up in a farming/ranching community.  The 1980’s were devastatingly hard on my family’s business as well as many of our neighbors.  People were going broke pretty steadily due to very high interest rates, high inflation and low commodity prices.  It was pretty common knowledge at the time that the only way a young man could get into ranching was by marrying it or inheriting it.  I’ve been super fortunate to have made my living the past 18 years with cattle, horses, and grass.  We haven’t inherited it, but in a way, I did marry it and I thought it appropriate that this first post be about the girl that has made it all possible.

John & Ann
John & Ann

In the picture above you can see that Ann is hanging all over me… being my biggest fan, just like she has been for the last 20 years.  If you can’t tell from the picture, I’m obsessing over some Angus pedigree just like I’ve been doing for nearly that long.  Ann and I started dating when I was 15 and she was 16.  Our first date was to the Drive In movie (she drove) and Rocky I was playing.

We got married in college and we knew what it was to be broke.  She never complained.  Upon graduation I turned down the company job with the company car and the company expense account for a ranch job.  Ann and I moved into a little mouse infested house that hadn’t been lived in for some time.  The ceiling was falling in, snow blew right through the North window and the wiring was questionable.  She never complained, in fact she loved it.   Crazy optimistic, that’s what I used to call her.  She worked nights in town 35 miles away so that I could take cows in lieu of wages.  I remember one night she was coming home about midnight or 1:00 and the roads were muddy, when she didn’t get there, I rode our horse out to meet her and brought her home horseback.  She never complained.

She was my right hand man in those days.  One time we were A.I. ing and there was a deep canyon that cows seldom ventured into on the far end of the pasture.  Ann went down in there and found a cow that was going out of heat, I bred her that night and the next spring we named that bull calf JAD HANDY ANND.

She has worked very hard the past 20 years, ‘taking care of the sick’, as Cole says.  Because of that, I’ve been free to keep living the dream through good times and bad.

She can only ride a horse for about an hour anymore due to an old track injury.  And she has a debilitating phobia of snakes that keeps her out of the tall grass most of the time.  Still, she is the best and most important part of John & Ann Dockweiler Angus.  So marry up if you can, I sure don’t regret it.