Harvests moves to Colorado
Wednesday, July 8
Last night we finished cutting here in Deerfield, Kan. Our job in Colorado is still a few days off, so we are not in too big of a rush to get up there. We will probably spend a day or two cleaning and washing the equipment here and then head north sometime this weekend.
This morning, the editorial intern at High Plains Journal, Lisa Brown, visited us. It was fun to talk face-to-face with the person I talk with each week about the All Aboard Wheat Harvest. Unfortunately, we were not able to show her too much since we are done cutting, but we still had a really nice visit. And she brought us some sweet gifts and cookies from the HPJ staff, which was so nice.
It sure is hot here. The weather is forecasted to be at least 100 degrees for the next week. I'm glad to report, though, that Dad had a chance to fix the air conditioner in the trailer house the other day ... so at least it won't be too miserable.
Friday, July 10
I noticed there were a lot of fields around here in Deerfield, Kan., that were cut by harvesters who use stripper headers so, I thought I'd take the opportunity to explain a few details about them. When a stripper header is used, it basically acts like a fine-tooth comb and "strips" the heads of wheat from the straw. This leaves the majority of the straw remaining.
This is different from the more commonly used auger and draper headers, which cut both the heads and a significant amount of straw.
A benefit of using a stripper header is that the standing straw can trap snow and other moisture, which assists the development of crops later in the year. Standing straw is also useful in no-till farming because it holds moisture in the soil.
Saturday, July 11
I don't have a lot to share tonight. Tomorrow, we're going to make the first trip to Colorado. I'm a little sad to be leaving Kansas ... I think mostly because it means that the summer is about half over, already. Is it possible that we only have two stops left? It sure doesn't feel like it, but I guess it's true.
Sunday, July 12
Well, we're not in Kansas anymore. We left Deerfield, Kan., late this morning and made it to our fourth stop for the summer, Limon, Colo., a little after 3 p.m. The trip here was a pretty quick one, and we didn't have any trouble along the way.
After we set up camp and moved equipment to the farm, it started to storm and continued to do so on and off throughout the night. With the storm came cooler temperatures--our thermometer read 57 degrees at one point. It's pretty crazy to think that just yesterday we were burning up in Kansas, with 100-plus degree temperatures, and now I'm sitting here in Colorado in jeans and a hoodie.
This afternoon, we talked to the farmer we are working for and it sounds like it could be mid-to late week before the wheat is ready to cut. So, instead of turning around right away and heading back to Deerfield, Kan., to get the rest of the equipment, we're going to wait until Monday. Dad doesn't like traveling on Sundays anyway because, if we have a break down or something like that, it's hard to find places, such as repair shops that are open.
Anyway, it's good to be back in Limon, Colo. Our first three stops this summer were all new stops, so it's nice to be in familiar territory. Plus, I just love Colorado.
Jenna Zeorian can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.