Uprooted Magnolia

Wyoming Longhorns, Part II

Posted in Photography, Ranching by leahyetter on February 29, 2012

©Leah Yetter Photographer

This cow is Patrick’s favorite. He likes her coloring and the rings around her horns. The rings, as you may have already guessed, tell the age of the cow. This girl is thirteen this year.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Kaylynn(sp?) stood proud and beautiful, even with a sprig of hay hanging out of her mouth.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Um hey pretty lady. Who does your makeup? It’s gorgeous dahling.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

I had to put the wide angle lens on for this shot. She was following me closely, probably with the hope I’d feed her some cake.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

This dark beauty was by the creek the whole time. She was uninterested in her guests.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Scratch that itch babe. You know she’s hitting the target because look at her tongue!

©Leah Yetter Photographer

At the end of our tour, the sun went behind the clouds and it got colder. These yearlings met us at the truck but were a little shy and didn’t stick around long.
We had a great time visiting with the Wilson’s and the cattle and look forward to going back when it warms up!


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Wyoming Longhorns, Part I

Posted in Calving, Photography, Ranching by leahyetter on February 28, 2012

I’ve been pawing at Patrick to take me to the Wilson Ranch for a while now. Every time we head up Hwy 34 to the plains to fix fence, I can always see their cattle way off in the distance.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

So he finally called them up and they invited us to come up Saturday afternoon. I was thrilled!
Not only because I was going to be up close and personal with award winning Longhorn Cattle, but they are calving right now!

©Leah Yetter Photographer

These little angels are born smaller than the average calf so during calving season, the mommas and babies are enclosed in a high fence pen. Coyotes just love the smell of a fresh born calf and can snatch one away before momma even knows what happened.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

These cows are fairly gentle but knew quite well that we were strangers.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

A few of them kicked the dirt but fortunately no one charged us.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

The baby beauties are born with only nubs on their head. (Lucky for the momma, am I right?)

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Some are born solid white and will develop their coloring over time.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

They were all pretty curious and happy to pose for a portrait.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

It’s amazing how aware and careful they are with their horns.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

This little one is loving her scrub down. Notice the tongue!

©Leah Yetter Photographer

I love her calf bucking in the background. There was a lot of that cuteness going on.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

At a couple weeks old, they start munching on little bits of hay.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Look at the little nubs coming out.  And I just love those ears!

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Inside the calving barn, the family brands grace the wall.

Stay tuned for more. The next stop is with cows that are yet to calve. They were sunbathing by the crick (creek). 🙂


Sunburst

Posted in Photography by leahyetter on February 26, 2012

©Leah Yetter Photographer

A sunburst through the trees as the snow melts away.


Snow Covered Hills

Posted in Photography, Winter by leahyetter on February 25, 2012

©Leah Yetter Photographer

We’ve been under a blanket of snow for the past couple of days. I’ve tagged along in the tractor (that is now working) with Patrick to the top of the hill to get bales of hay for the cows. Up top is one of the best views of the entire place. It was pretty cloudy on this particular day and I love how there is a little blue sky peeking through at the top left.


Live…

Posted in Horses, Photography by leahyetter on February 24, 2012

..like somebody left the gate open.

I saw that phrase on the internet captioning a picture of a dog running it’s little heart out with a smile on his face across a meadow. I immediately thought of it when we brought Poco and her filly out of her corral and into the wide open meadows.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

This little tike ran…

©Leah Yetter Photographer

and ran…

©Leah Yetter Photographer

and ran. She made about 5 circles around Poco and I while we waited for Patrick to get all the gates.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Then she’d check in with her mom….and start it all over again.

Happiness is running like the Wyoming wind in wide open spaces. Happy Friday everyone!


Cotton Candy

Posted in Nature, Photography, Wind by leahyetter on February 22, 2012

“It howls and haunts
Goes where it wants
It’ll taunt you and get under your skin
No there ain’t no shelter
From the Wyoming wind”
-Mark Ereli

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Highways that surround our little town are closed today.
The wind is howling a hurricane force that folks in coastal towns are very familiar with.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

The dishes are rattling in the cabinets. Birds can barely make it to the neighboring limb. As soon as a horse or cow gets a bite of grass in their mouth, it blows out as they start to chew.

It’s enough to make you crazy. Really.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

So fortunately I can find images on the hard drive that remind me of my peaceful hikes around the ranch.
I remember capturing these cattails on a calm and sunny day a couple weeks ago. The hairless ones look like corn dogs to me. The furrier ones look like cotton candy.
mmmmmm cotton candy.

See, I warned ya… Crazy. Please don’t judge.


Pancake Tuesday

Posted in Photography by leahyetter on February 21, 2012

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Matilda nor the horses would cooperate with my festive mask to honor Fat Tuesday so I posed for the camera this time.
Wishing I was in NOLA celebrating but instead we’ll have pancakes for supper to use up our dairy before fasting and abstaining from meat for Lent begins. Lucky for me, I’m a vegaquarious.

vegaquarious : one who does not eat warmblooded animals, but eats fish.

Happy Mardi Gras!


a frosty update

Posted in Photography, Winter by leahyetter on February 16, 2012

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Nothing much to report on here on the home front. After such a busy week weekend, we’re just licking our wounds and getting ready for the next hurdle – calving. But the calf we do have and colts are doing well, the tractor is fixed, the cows are fat and happy, and the snow has melted into mud.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

These shots are of the frost that we had early Sunday morning. I don’t think these images do it justice because the ranch just glittered and sparkled all morning long. Hopefully next time the sun will come out longer to accentuate the icy glitter that covered everything and I can get a few more shots. Sometimes you just have to be there to enjoy the sparkle. All bundled up of course. Brrrrrr.


Wild Heart

Posted in Love, Photography by leahyetter on February 14, 2012
©Leah Yetter Photographer

deer track in the snow

Who knew a print made by wildlife would take on the shape of a heart. Never noticed it before this weekend but with the soft powder all over the ranch, heart prints are everywhere.

Hope your heart is wild and warm today.  Love y’all.


A Weekend of Firsts

Posted in Cattle Roundup, Horses, Photography, Ranching, Winter by leahyetter on February 13, 2012

Phew! This was a very eventful and COLD weekend. Like 10 degrees and below cold.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

We got our first calf. Ironically from heifer #1, a first time mother on Saturday.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Poco’s filly started eating hay. She would eat a few bites, and then go suckle. So cute!

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Yep. Those are icicles on her little ears. It’s THAT cold!

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Kate and family had “no comment” and went on to find a spot to lay down.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

As if we weren’t cold enough and covered in 5 inches of snow already, we woke up to a our first deep frost of the year on Sunday morning.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

So we moved the cows from the pasture across the river…

©Leah Yetter Photographer

…to our backyard.

Then Patrick went to feed the bulls a couple pastures over and the tractor broke down.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

So we had to tow it back home. Him driving backwards in the working tractor and me steering the broken down tractor. Not easy. And not my favorite adventure thus far.

We walked into the house just before dark. I put a couple more logs on the fire, wrapped up in fleece head to toe, opened a bottle of Chianti, and enjoyed my couch and the Grammy’s.


Snowflakes on the River Ice

Posted in Photography, Winter by leahyetter on February 11, 2012

©Leah Yetter Photographer

It snowed yesterday morning, noon, and night and while Patrick checked on the cows across the river, I checked on the horses and heifers close to home. After making my rounds for the third time, I took a break by the Laramie River and captured snowflakes atop the ice. Today we have a beautiful blanket of snow as far as the eyes can see. It’s a gorgeous yet chilly Saturday morning at the homestead.
Have a great day my friends and stay warm!


Hooked

Posted in Horses, Photography by leahyetter on February 10, 2012

Snow has been falling since early this morning but isn’t sticking much.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Obviously I can’t keep my eyes or my camera off of Kate and her little one.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

But I’m justified in my concern and constant spying.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Patrick couldn’t find our fragile loved one this morning, and neither could her frantic mother and the other horses.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

She got herself pinned in a tight spot and when I got the call, I came running and actually hurdled over
the fence to help .

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Once we freed her from her confines, Kate whinnied, ran right up to her and they immediately hooked onto one another. The love and bond is so strong with these two. There is always the chance that mom will disown her foal if something rocks the boat.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

It was very stressful but everyone is fine and together and momma Leah is watching over them closer than ever. But I’m watching from the window as I recover from that hurdle. I think I pulled something.


It’s Another Girl!

Posted in Horses, Photography by leahyetter on February 9, 2012

Kate had her baby girl yesterday morning as I was reporting to you about Poco and her filly.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

We walked up quietly just to check from a distance to make sure mom and baby were well.
She was up and sucking….

©Leah Yetter Photographer

…and still learning how to work those long legs.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

This bald eagle was circling, I don’t think he posed a threat but he probably smelled the brand new life and was just as curious as we were.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

I checked on them later in the afternoon and her nose was covered in milk. Momma seemed tired.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

So they both went down for a nap. Good work first time mom.
Kate loves her baby.
So do I.


Second Day with Poco and the Filly

Posted in Horses, Photography by leahyetter on February 8, 2012

Wasn’t sure what to expect on day two. February is not ideal for a horse to give birth out here in the low temps but since this wasn’t planned, we leave it up to nature.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

I thought I’d find our new colt and her momma inside the barn on her first snowy morning but when I walked up to check on them, they were outside taking it all in.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

By afternoon the sun came out and it was a great time for a nap to soak in the warmth.
When she’s about 3 weeks old, we’ll have a good idea what she will look like as a full grown horse. Her color, her build, etc. Right now she’s all legs.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

In the evening we separated Kate from the big herd of geldings and mares and put her in the pasture with Crazy Alice and Pepper. They ran her hard until she was fed up and showed them who was boss.
This will be the first time Kate gives birth and when she finally does, we’ll move her in with Poco and the filly.


she’s watcha call a Catch-Colt

Posted in Horses, Photography by leahyetter on February 7, 2012

We had a sweet surprise yesterday afternoon. As I was replying to an email from my dear friend back east that introduced me to Wyoming, Patrick called and said “put your coat on, get on the four wheeler and come to the hillside where we walk the dogs”. I knew exactly where he was talking about so off I went.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

When I arrived, I saw her. This itty bitty filly was already standing, still wet and maybe 2 hours old. And folks, this was an unplanned parenthood. About 11 months ago, the neighbors stud got in with 2 of our mares and may have bred them both. We were reassured by many that the horses weren’t cycling and more than likely weren’t bred.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

But this little cutie-pie proves everyone wrong.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

We gave them a couple hours and noticed that the geldings were kicking each other competing for the attention of the colt and mare. We had to get them separated to calm everyone down. It wasn’t easy but we got them corralled.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Poco 190 and her colt are in their own pin with protection from the cold and wind. Kate has a big belly so we’ll be watching her closely for the next few days. In the meantime, I’ll be having fun taking portraits of our precious little mutt.


i’ll take a Wyoming Sunset over football any day

Posted in Photography, The Ranch, Winter by leahyetter on February 6, 2012

©Leah Yetter Photographer

I’m not a sports person by any stretch of the imagination but I did enjoy the Puppy Bowl VIII on Animal Planet yesterday. And when the Super Bowl strangely ended up on our TV (I guess Patrick wanted to know the score or watch the sexy commercials) I stepped outside to enjoy the pink and blue Wyoming sunset.


Snow Drops

Posted in Photography, Winter by leahyetter on February 3, 2012
©Leah Yetter Photographer

snow dappled

©Leah Yetter Photographer

cattail and stems weighed down by snow

©Leah Yetter Photographer

perky cattails

©Leah Yetter Photographer

the Laramie River, mostly frozen

We moved cattle yesterday and separated the heifers (new mother cows) from the cows and now we watch and wait for the babies to drop. The black cows will give birth first and soon and the reds will start in April or so.

The snowfall started yesterday evening and came down all night over the ranch. We are on the outskirts of the storm that is hammering Colorado and it’s been drizzling snow off and on today. There isn’t much accumulation so it’s pretty easy to get around.
I just love the peacefulness of a snowfall. There is something so serene about the clean, white blanket that covers the ground and the only thing I hear is the snow crunching under my boots.


in Circles

Posted in Nature, Photography by leahyetter on February 1, 2012

The vultures are circling.
And it’s not because Patrick is another year older today.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

But because I have a hard disk crashing.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

With guidance from a friend via telephone, I had my head in the computer box for hours yesterday going round and round running tests and replacing parts and still, the drive won’t wake up. So I put it in the freezer and went for a walk. Is it a bad sign that vultures were circling over me the whole time?