It was cold morning ride but it was also darn sure pretty.
That fog made roundup this morning really hard: couldn’t see the cows, they couldn’t see where to go.
Most of us just kept our little bunches of cows headed for all the mooing that was going on south at the corrals.
Except we had a couple guys on quads that did a real good job of confusing the cows which were following quad tracks every which direction.
We did have some good help. I really like this man and his little healer cross dog: humble, soft spoken, and kind.
The dog is the most cheerful soul (he was just jumping with glee to get to come today) and can’t hardly take his eyes of his old cowboy. Even a bad dog is welcome with us, not that this one is bad.
These are the only 2 trees and we usually can see them from quite a distance. They are close to the South camp and the corrals. We started at first light and had about half the cattle rounded up when I took this picture. The ones I took before this I guess it was too dark for them to turn out.
Buddy looked a little frosty.
And so did the cows. The members helping in the corral were all dressed in their warm duds. The cattle are all pushed into a very big pen together.
Then a few at a time are moved into this alleyway.
Then into here where they move one at a time
towards the announcer who reads the member’s number on the yellow ear tag as the cow comes towards him. They always choose a great big strong guy like the fellow in blue (a big man) to run the swinging gate at the end of this alley and he sorts them to the right or left alleyways.
Then cows and calves (not usually together by now) go down the alleyways where each gate is maned by a member and his cows go in that pen.
Some neighbor’s cows sometimes get mixed up with ours or some cows have lost their ear tag so they go into the stray pen so their brands can get read and later we figure out where they go.
(It was so cold you could see the cow’s breath)
It all works like a well oiled machine and 1800 head can get rounded up and sorted before noon and in the afternoon people trail their cattle home across the bridge over the creek and south down the road. Each group is counted out and leave at spaced out intervals. A few that live too far away haul theirs home but most folks on horseback take them home with a truck or quad to help.
So now it’s just a great big 40,000 acres of emptiness until the cows return in the spring and work starts all over again.