Pipi’s Pasture: Nearly the end for summer pasture

This past weekend, I drove up to pasture where the cows spend the summer, pulled off to the side of the county road and parked the car. It was an early, cool morning, my favorite time of the day, and I sat there and took in the sights.

Many of the cows were milling around the lower part of the pasture, close to the stackyard. Some were dining on loose hay, dropped when bales were loaded the day before. Still others enjoyed a mineral block at the opening to another section of the pasture. One cow bawled to her calf as she walked down the little hill to the creek. They were a content bunch, indeed.

I thought, “Enjoy yourselves, cows. It’s nearly the end of the summer pasture season. “ In about a month’s time, they will be coming back to Pipi’s Pasture.

For the most part, the grass is dry and either brown or a whitish color, though, in some places, where the hay was cut earlier, it’s green and is kept picked down by the cattle. There is still plenty of feed, however, for another month.

Along the county road, the grass is tall, and some of it appears to be headed out, thogh it may have already lost the seeds. Here and there, one can see trails that the deer use to walk back and forth across the road to water. Perhaps a bear or bears also use the trails, as my brother, Duane Osborn, spotted a bear just up the road on the same property. The bear was in a serviceberry bush eating berries.

There isn’t a lot of water in the creek that trickles through the pasture, though, in some places, it is probably in pools. So far, there is plenty of water for the cows.

Over the creek and up a little hill is the haystack. Except for a few bales, the hay is gone, loaded up and brought down to Pipi’s Pasture, where it was stacked for the winter. That’s where, earlier in the summer, Duane found the calf with her head stuck in the spokes of a wheel. No matter that there is tall grass in the pasture, the cows hang around the haystack, looking for a handout. Just the day before, Duane found a bale of hay that had fallen off the truck at the edge of the creek. A bull stood in the creek eating on it.

For the most part, the leaves on the chokecherry, serviceberry and oak trees/bushes are still green. However, a few of the serviceberry leaves are yellow, probably due to the dry weather.

As I sat there in the car, I remembered a September a few years ago, when we had a surprise snowstorm. The trees all over the county were filled with so much heavy snow their branches broke. At this same summer pasture, 15 inches of snow covered the grass. Lyle and I hauled hay from Pipi’s Pasture, and Duane helped feed the cattle. That weekend, we hauled the cattle home. After that, the snow melted, and the weather turned nice again.

As I watched the cattle, I marveled that another summer pasture season has nearly come to an end.

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