6-23-14, Valley Falls, OR - Today marked the very successful completion of our cattle drive to the Fremont National Forest. A tally at the forest pasture gate showed that we had 316 cows and bulls. Since we started out with that number, but picked up a few strays from neighbor ranchers, we only dropped a few head along the way. All the missing cattle will be rounded up in the fall when the cows are driven back through the pastures closer to the ranch. The cows from the neighboring ranches will get some good grass for the summer and be returned to their owners in the fall.
This morning, after unloading the horses from the trailer, we went through the gate into their pasture for the previous two days and started our drive to gather the cattle. The gather was a real challenge as one end of the paddock was choked with thick stands of lodgepole pine and the other end was full of boggy ground. After about an hour of ducking pine branches and skirting hock-deep mud, we finally rounded up the herd and started them for the gate.