A Cowboy’s Faith: Ranch crew mission accomplished

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.“There’s a bunch in that timber draw and they won’t move let alone come out.”

That was the ranch manager talking to the cowboy and cowgirl crew rounding up calves to sell.

Gather of this pasture known for renegades started with initial directions to horseback assistants. “Somebody will need to hold this horse while I walk the timber. There’s no way to ride through the brush.”

Before too long the herd from the north collected by the four-wheeler met with those brought out of cover. Diagonally headed northeast, one bitty from the south tore back from where she came with more pairs tailing after.

No whoop and holler but eight riders exploded into action on both sides attempting to prevent a potential stampede. Grudge apparent, the pairs were regrouped with others as one bitty headed astray yet toward the corral.

“Get her,” was the manager’s order. Threesome lariats unraveled went to pursue and in short order had cow roped, driving calf alongside into the pen.

By that time, a handful had escaped back to the north fence with determination made to save remainders.

Without much ado, that group was nearly corralled when a bawling heifer scattered past the gatherers. Fortunately that replacement quality bovine was quickly roped by the southpaw cowgirl and persuaded into confinement.

Spreading out all riders moved into a slow trot north to the fence line intent on recovering runaways. One showed and four soon followed with attentive ranch helpers forwardly yet cautiously prodding along.

Then with gate closed on those previous escapees, deciphering began, concluding agreement still one pair shy.

The very ornery hulking cow with quality steer calf at side had been seen by one rider earlier. But the rip, for congeniality yet insufficiently accurate description, was now invisible.

“She’s still down in that southeast draw, hardly any way to see her or get the bitty out,” herdsman assessed.

Yet low and behold that extra dark timber shadow was the rambunctious momma and her big baby. Only to be forced out and soon lost again. Persistence finally sort of paid off with the mean prolific rebel allowed freedom as her calf was roped and jailed.

Still light left and every calf needed trapped the truly cowboy way, nothing else mattered.

Reminded of Deuteronomy 12:7: Celebrate everything your crew accomplished through the blessing.”


030615-franksmug2Frank J. Buchman is a lifelong rancher from Alta Vista, a lifetime newspaper writer, syndicated national ag writer and a radio marketing consultant. He writes a weekly column to share A Cowboy’s Faith.


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