夏季赶牛。

We saddled up and trailered the horses out before dawn.天空是深蓝色的,几颗星星在云间闪烁。在即将到来的太阳到来之前,天空的东边已经变白了。我们小跑到草地的尽头,偶尔的岩石马蹄铁环,清晨空气中升起的鼠尾草的香味。

“开始把这些牛养起来并移动,“my husband said to me as we trotted along,向躺在草地上的一群奶牛示意。他带着我们的女儿骑到远处的角落,and I turned my horse towards the resting cattle.


我骑在牛中间,拍打我的伙伴,和他们说话。One by one they got up and began calling for their calves.很快他们都打电话来了,每头牛的叫声都让她的邻居担心。
我让他们往北走,很快我女儿就追上了我,我们开始养奶牛,while my husband rode the edges.

我们在小溪边发生了小冲突;we knew if we let one cross,they'd all want to backtrail and that would be very time-consuming.But my husband's skill and fast riding turned them back.

很快,I saw riders on the eastern rim – the other 兴发网页下载版cowboys had arrived and were working the slope beyond the creek.I saw a couple dozen cows strung out,从山脊下来,兴发网页下载版后面是牛仔。

Then the sun rose in a blaze of reddish light,太阳光在紫色的云间划过。绿色的夏草和牛身上的尘土,所有的一切都为牛仔、马和拍打的绳子创造了一个惊人的背景。兴发网页下载版

不让我的马减速,I slipped my phone out of my pocket and snapped a few quick photos of the beauty that lay all around me.Summer had come to this high prairie country,它很漂亮!!

我们把牛推到谷底,through sagebrush and around sharp-rimmed gullies.Fat prairie dogs scurried down their holes,and crows cawed in the distance.

有时一头母牛会掉进沟里,running the length of it hoping to escape the riders and hit the back trail. It was useless,for someone always chased her out again.But always some calves would follow her lead,and then we'd have to whoop them out of there,也是。

牛群慢慢地向北移动,当太阳升起时,so did clouds of mosquitoes.We'd sprayed ourselves and our horses before starting,but still the bugs sat thickly black on the horses' necks and shoulders.They whined in dark clouds around our heads,if of you missed a spot with the spray,他们会找到它的!!

We moved the herd past a mud bog,and one calf thought it looked fun.他被黏糊糊的泥土困住了肩膀。Whether it was my daughter who chased him out,or one of the dogs,我没看见。But he managed to free himself and rejoin the herd,他穿着灰色的泥衣,显得很邋遢。

在草地的尽头,牧群不得不爬上一座小山,稍微往西拐,才能到达新的牧场。但他们不喜欢上山,太阳升得很高,热量就要来了,they wanted to stop and feed.

I felt my own inexperience keenly,我试着让牛犊排成一条直线,让奶牛继续运动。我在农场住了这么多年,在过去的两年里,我只帮忙养牛。然后一些老母牛会担心,并试图跟随。我真希望我能养条狗去追那些可怜的小牛。(There were plenty of dogs working,but they were all further up the line.)

我从观察我丈夫和其他牛仔中学到了很多关于养牛的知识,兴发网页下载版and trying to mimic their actions.我尽力了,但那群人不想上山。Soon other riders came back to help move them.

As I crested the ridge,我丈夫骑马来接我。“你们让这些牛动起来,“he shouted at the riders near me,“and you come with me;“he said,“we need to ride down this way and check those trees,“他做了个手势,转身向西边小跑。

I kicked my nag into a trot and followed him down the hill.We reached the trees and the deep gully they were covering.他骑车到了另一边,我轻松地坐在东边。I didn't see any cattle,but I heard him crashing one through the brush.很快,我看见两只黑牛从沟里跑出来。我站在一旁,让他们从我身边经过,加入前面的牛群。

Now we were in an area of grassy bogs.草长在粗糙的小山丘上,你可以看到绿草间渗出的水。It was too soft for a horse,but could hold up a light calf.We had to go around but the calves liked to run in there to escape us.That's when dogs were invaluable.The 兴发网页下载版cowboys with dogs would send them in,and those calves came flying right out!我们在一块500英尺长或更高的沼泽地周围与这些小牛争论。

几头牛撞到了一小块灌木丛里,but soon were driven out again.The lead cows had reached the gate,其他人都被拖在后面,the experienced riders workin the sides,myself and the kids at the back,向散乱的人大喊大叫,拍打我们的绳子。

很快,他们都穿过大门,onto the new pasture.骑手们都在篱笆旁排队等候母牛们长大后安顿下来。Each cow walked around and called until she found her calf.Then they'd walk off together.

兴发网页下载版Cowboys debriefing after the drive.

My man roped a couple of leppies* and waited with them while the rest of us trotted back to the trailers.我们现在都脱掉了外套。The sun was high overhead and I thought it felt great!(Though some of the men thought it was hot😄) .

I slipped the bridle off my horse,把吊带套在他身上,and loaded him in the trailer.我沿着土路开车去了我丈夫和小牛在那儿等着的地方。几个牛仔帮他把牛犊兴发网页下载版和马装进拖车,and we headed home.
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*麻风:母亲去世的小牛,and it needs bottle fed.有时它有一个母亲,but her bag is ruined or she refuses to allow the baby to suck.

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