Uprooted Magnolia

Clouds Over Cows

Posted in Nature, Photography by leahyetter on May 18, 2015

“Life would be dull if we had to look up at cloudless monotony day after day.”-Gavin Pretor-Pinney

©Leah Yetter Photographer

We’re still here… underneath cloudy skies and rain. We haven’t floated away yet. Water is standing everywhere we step and the cows have muddy snouts. They are loving the abundance of green grass. Happy cows. Happy ranch. 🙂


 

Round Up and Branding

Posted in Cattle Roundup, Cowboy, Photography by leahyetter on May 11, 2015

This Mother’s Day weekend was a rainy and snowy one. But last weekend the weather was perfect for a cattle roundup and branding. Below are images of that day.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

After saddling the colt , he saddled his horse for the round up.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

The boss got some help from his daughter with buckling up his chaps.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Making final adjustments to the cinch.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Discussing the route for gathering cows and calves.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

And…they’re off!

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Before branding the calves, we worked/doctored the cows in the barn.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Getting the horse ready for roping calves.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

We start them young out here in the wild west.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Hot irons sit and wait. The flames are powered by a propane tank.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

It was a nice day with friends, old and new. After the calves were all branded, they let them out of the corrals to mother up. By early evening, they all found one another and are doing great.

If you’d like to see more from this day, go to my website HERE.

Thanks for looking… 🙂


 

Snowdrops

Posted in Nature, Photography by leahyetter on April 16, 2015

©Leah Yetter Photographer

The morning haze rolled off the mountains and down onto us yesterday. It rained, snowed, drizzled, rained, sleeted, and snowed all day long. At one point it felt like the wind was blowing from all directions because the rain came down in a cross-cross pattern. The snow didn’t stick and on this damp and chilly morning, we are so grateful for this springtime moisture.
PS: Only two more cows left to calve. Yay!


 

Since We Last Spoke…

Posted in Calving, Photography by leahyetter on April 2, 2015

…I only have five more to go. Calving has been a bit challenging but overall we are well. Busy, but well. Happy and healthy. And sometimes on a sunny afternoon, we are very lazy.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Proud mommas keep their calves close.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

When I ride through the meadow to check on everyone, the good mothers locate their babies for me.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

And sweet kisses occur frequently.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Now don’t get too excited. There are days that don’t go as well as one would hope. Some of these cows seem to think that having their calf across the river is a good idea. Sure, she’s looking for privacy to give birth. But when she’s ready to join the herd, walking across the river isn’t as easy for her calf as she thinks. Like Patrick says, “they just want to baptize them right off the bat!”
Ugh.
I wait for P to get home from work so we can cross the river in the 4-wheeler to spook them out of the bluffs and catch the calf (by his tail). Then we load the little booger up and drive him back across with mom following us while breathing heavy and humming.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Then there are times when the cow crosses the river with her older calf and hides him in a canyon. So the big, bad coyote (Patrick) scares him up and out of there and we “encourage” them to cross back and join the herd.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

I’m on the edge of my seat right about now.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

I. hate. this. part.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Can I look now?

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Deep sigh.

It’s so scary to watch them cross. Patrick is in the process of fencing off the river but that takes time and money, both of which are scarce around here. But we are hoping to have it done before next calving season.

The weather has been splendid and I have felt like I’ve been in a National Geographic documentary these past couple of weeks.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

On that note,  the turkey’s are back!


Waiting Game

Posted in Calving, Photography by leahyetter on March 12, 2015

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Just chillin’. Waiting for more baby calves to arrive. Any day now girls. *Sigh* It’s like waiting for water to boil.


Back Home and it Sure Feels Nice

Posted in Calving, Nature, Photography by leahyetter on March 9, 2015

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Hi everyone! I am back from a lovely two week trip back east visiting family and friends. I had a wonderful time but didn’t get to see half the people on my list. Ugh! Next time though…and I won’t let it go two years before my next visit.
Anyway, it’s nice to be home. The weather is magnificent and lucky number 13 debuted the first calf of the season just yesterday. It looks healthy and happy so later today I’ll get a closer look. Right now mom and baby are bonding.
Hope you are having a great start to your week. Cheers!


A Snowy Walk Through Fog and Mist

Posted in Nature, Photography by leahyetter on January 13, 2015

It’s no secret that one of my favorite weather events is the misty, dewy fog that hangs heavy in the air some mornings during the fall and winter months.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

The clouds dusted us with snow yesterday so there was just an inch or two on the ground this morning when I awoke. I rolled out of bed, got right into my coveralls and grabbed a camera for a wander to the meadows.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

It was so still and quiet. All I could hear was the swish of my clothes and the crunch of ice under my boots.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

It looked like a different world. And it wasn’t even that cold. Just peaceful.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

The girls were all there and greeted me from a distance. They are grateful, as am I, that the snow over the holidays has mostly melted and that this little bit hasn’t covered the grass much.

The fog lifted late morning and the sun is melting the snow this afternoon. The winter cycle continues….


Zero Degree Ranching

Posted in Photography, Ranching by leahyetter on January 2, 2015

©Leah Yetter Photographer

On my Facebook page earlier this week, I wrote that the girls were just plain ungrateful. I risked my life to drive through the deep snow to give them cake because Patrick was driving snow plow ’til all hours of the day and night. It was up to me to feed them. Well, the ATV got high centered in a snow drift. I was so very stuck.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

The cows stared at me like I was nuts. They wouldn’t come eat the cake I put out for them and I was so frustrated! It’s like their brains were frozen. I don’t doubt it because every bit of me was frozen too. I cried. And I mean ugly cried. I hiked back the the house and stayed in the rest of the day. Patrick got home that night and dug the ranger out of the snowbank and got it back to the barn. He wasn’t mad at all thank goodness. It isn’t the first time he’s had to dig an ATV out of the snow.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

The snow was just too deep in the meadows for me to get anything done on my own. So the next day, I brought reinforcements.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

They came running this time….

©Leah Yetter Photographer

…because my big strong man came to the rescue.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Check out our new bale feeder! This winter, instead of pushing these huge bales with our big strong arms, we have a feeder that hooks onto the ranger or the truck and unrolls the bale as we drive through the snow. No more faceplants in the snow-drenched hay for me!

©Leah Yetter Photographer

This was our first time using it.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

The girls were pleased (and so were we).

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

We don’t have a tractor and don’t really want the expense of one. While convenient, tractors are expensive to purchase and the upkeep can be pricey as well. We are content with out little manual bale feeder.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

I hope you all had a happy holiday season! This was a tough one for me but I got through it.
The snow is still thick on the ground but I do see drips coming off the roof. I think we may melt soon. 🙂 We are up in the 20’s today and it feels downright balmy! I may go out in short sleeves in a bit to get some vitamin D.

ttfn (ta ta for now),
Leah


River Cow

Posted in Nature, Photography by leahyetter on November 3, 2014

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Thinking about our gorgeous fall leaves on this overcast and rainy day. This girl decided to bathe and take a sip while I was setting up for a portrait session one morning. She made her way across and grazed in the sunshine after a while. I love the grass and water dripping from her mouth. She looks quite content with her surroundings.


Tree of Gold

Posted in Nature, Photography by leahyetter on October 9, 2014

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Another golden evening in the meadows.
The grass is so tall it makes for easy eating for the cattle. They aren’t having to work too hard right now. I call them the lazy grazers, lovingly of course. 🙂


Weaning Day 2014

Posted in Cattle Roundup, Photography, Ranching by leahyetter on September 18, 2014

We weaned the calves off of momma yesterday. We kept a few to replenish our herd and the rest went to market. It was a beautiful morning. All in all, it was a very good day.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Since we have such a small herd, we had two cowboys bring them in on horses while Patrick and I stayed on the ground to get gates.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

They came right to Patrick because he has the yummy cake. We’ve been chumming them in the last few days and they like us. A lot!

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Weaning is hard on the calves (and me!). The five heifers we brought home are bawling for momma. They’ll be better in a few days and I make regular trips down to see them, talk to them and try to help them feel calm. I wish I knew how to play the trumpet. I would play it for them. But for now, they just have to deal with my singing. 🙂


 

Summer Grazing

Posted in Photography, Ranching, Wildlife by leahyetter on June 26, 2014

©Leah Yetter Photographer

We took the cows to the hills for summer grazing.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

I think they’ll enjoy it. The grass is up to their bellies.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

While leaving, we found ourselves in a horse race.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

As we slowed down to let the horses “win”, Patrick spotted a baby antelope in the tall grass.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

He crouched, trying to hide from me.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

But no such luck. I had my eye on him.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

We drove on and when I looked back, I saw momma coming to care for her young.

Aside from the mosquitoes, this is a wonderful time of year in Wyoming. 🙂


Bathed in Pink Velvet

Posted in Nature, Photography by leahyetter on June 19, 2014

©Leah Yetter Photographer

We’re still kind of waiting for summer around here.  Rainstorms have been blowing through weekly and temperatures are quite chilly some days.  At least the sunsets are consistently beautiful. Last night the clouds looked like pink velvet in the sky as far as the eye could see. Such is life in wonderful Wyoming.


Neighborly Branding

Posted in Branding, Cattle Roundup, Photography by leahyetter on May 1, 2014

Branding season is upon us and that means cowboys as far as the eye can see!
Our neighbors have been a huge help while we adjust to our new location. They came to my rescue one morning when I found a newborn calf clinging to life. They heard the stress in my voice over the phone and came right over. But that’s a story for another time.
Anyway, last weekend before I had to travel to Laramie for a shoot, I had the opportunity to photograph the gather and some of the branding. Here are some shots from that morning.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

They have a larger herd than us and helped us a few days before to brand our little grasshoppers. Neighbors helping neighbors. That’s what it’s all about. Am I right? 🙂
Have a great May Day folks! Hang baskets of fresh flowers on the doorknobs of your neighbors’ houses. Dance into May. It’s finally warming up!


Tender Moments at Calving Time

Posted in Calving, Photography by leahyetter on April 7, 2014

Not unlike most days lately, I spent most of my Saturday down with the cows. Normally it would be a quick trip down, count them, check the health of the calves, and head back to the house. But as I made my way down, I saw #25 across the river giving birth to her calf right along the riverbank. So, I found a comfy spot by a Cottonwood tree and snapped some shots of them.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

I had to stay with them to make sure the calf didn’t tumble into the river. These little guys could drown in a mud puddle. I wasn’t going to go to them right away because they needed time to bond. The calf needed to get on his feet and suckle.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

It did and I kept my distance. I always enjoy the opportunity to watch these tender moments.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

The spot that I found had a good view of a second cow who I knew was calving.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

#13 stimulated her calf to his feet and they bonded as well.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Slimy calf with milk on his lips. That’s what we like to see!

©Leah Yetter Photographer

After a couple of hours or so of monitoring these 2 sets, Patrick and I brought #25 and her calf across the river safely to join the rest of the herd.


Happy and Proud Cow Mommas

Posted in Calving, Photography by leahyetter on April 2, 2014

Momma loves baby.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

These guys are keeping me busy! And I love it. 🙂


Red-Winged Feathers and Frosted Fur

Posted in Calving, Photography by leahyetter on March 24, 2014

It was another snowy weekend but that didn’t stop birds from singing or calves from arriving.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

red-winged blackbird

©Leah Yetter Photographer

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Will it ever end?!? I guess I can be thankful it isn’t 26 below zero. The air doesn’t hurt my face like it did last month.


Snowy Tuesday

Posted in Photography, Winter by leahyetter on March 18, 2014

On this Tilda Tuesday, we have a very snowy Tuesday. Roads are closed and Patrick says they are a mess. So here I am as usual, home all day to watch over the girls and their babies. I just hope they don’t drop any new calves in this mess. Normally the mommas hide their babies and I have to look for them just to make sure all is well. But this morning they are all bunched together with babies in tow.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Such a cold walk across the meadow.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

I don’t think this little one is thrilled with his first snow storm.
It should warm right up tomorrow and we’ll forget all about today. I hope.


Boiled Over

Posted in Calving, Photography by leahyetter on March 5, 2014

©Leah Yetter Photographer

What a relief! The snow started melting Monday afternoon and soaked right into the ground. We are grateful for the moisture and grateful that the weather warmed up for our first calf to be born. This little girl arrived yesterday afternoon. You know how you can’t watch a pot of water to boil? Well, after being home and checking on the ladies 4 or 5 times a day for the last couple of weeks, she decides to give birth while I make a quick run to town for a haircut. I came home and there she was, cow #2 came to a boil and popped out a healthy calf. While I was checking on these two, one of the heifers was ringing her tail. She had a belly ache and I knew it wouldn’t be long for her. She was simmering. Two hours later she had a successful birth, which is not always common for a first time mother cow. With the arrival of these two calves, I am able to breathe a sigh of relief.  We have a week or two until the rest of our small herd starts calving. ♥


the Weekend of this Unlikely Cowgirl

Posted in Photography, Ranching, Winter by leahyetter on March 3, 2014

©Leah Yetter Photographer
Saturday was sooo snowy. The sun was behind the clouds and so was my mood. Ranching is tough and sometimes lonely work, especially in blinding snow and freezing temperatures; any rancher/caretaker reading this knows what I’m talking about. It is a full day of constantly checking on the well being of the cows and horses, pitching frozen hay over the fence to the heifers, and breaking ice so they all can get a drink. Where loose hay is frozen to your cheeks and tripping over frozen cow turds is the norm. Having to climb over the corral fence with a twenty pound bucket of cow cake because we forgot to make a temporary gate for us to enter and exit safely. In constant worry that a calf will be born and not make it through the freezing night because we haven’t finished building our calving barn yet. All while Patrick has to be in a snow plow for over 10 hours on the interstate making the roads safe for drivers who feel the need to be driving on the roads during a dangerous blizzard. (Yep, those folks are out there… and you may be one of them. 😉 )
©Leah Yetter Photographer
And then, Sunday morning, the sun was there outside my door. Although 6 inches of snow still lay there glistening on the ground, the sky was blue and birds were singing. Patrick was home by 8am and we were able to spend the day feeding, watering and tripping over frozen cow turds together.  We even ventured across the river and hiked around our bluffs to enjoy the peaceful scenery that surrounds us.
I didn’t shoot much this weekend because the ranch work had to be done and I had to stay focused. As I’ve said before, I only pretend to be a cowgirl, I’m really just a photographer. But this weekend, I was a cowgirl first.
I’m happy to report that we are still here with all our fingers and toes and happy to see the snow dripping off the roof today.
Ahhhh, is it spring yet?