Uprooted Magnolia


Posted in Nature, Photography, Stormy Skies by leahyetter on July 9, 2012

©Leah Yetter Photographer

After Patrick spent 6 days and nights on the Arapaho fire, he came home the evening of the 4th and said that the southeast side of the fire (our immediate threat) was out. The next day we went to the Laramie Plains to check the cattle and repair a gate that the elk tore down. On our way home we saw black skies, and it wasn’t from smoke. The closer we got we could see sheets of rain falling on and around the fire. There was flash flooding and a lot of the crew still out there took cover and waited it out. And now, because the last few days have been cool and wet, the fire is 70% contained. But not before it grew to over 98,000 acres. Dryer and warmer temps are on the way but the crews will continue direct attacks on the hottest spots.
No one lost their lives and only minor injuries were reported. My heart goes out to those who lost their homes, their pasture, and their livestock. But we are so thankful that relief from above has arrived and we hope it only gets even better from here.
Thank you for all of your kind comments and prayers. We appreciate each and every one of you.

summer haze and a staring contest

Posted in Nature, Photography by leahyetter on June 26, 2012

We had a hard rain yesterday. And with a hard rain comes lightning strikes causing more fires. Colorado has it way worse than we do but we are fighting our share.
Patrick and I trailed cattle on horseback yesterday morning and could smell the smoke the entire time.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Once the sun came out after the rain yesterday evening, the smog over the hills was so thick.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

But on to happier thoughts, the bucks are growing their antlers and are still in the velvet.
Just look at this happy family.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

We had a staring contest. I won because they took off quickly after I shot this. Bambi and father ran together for a while until they found mom again.

Time for a Rain Dance

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

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Took a peek into this canyon on a beautiful evening ride with friends. The charred trees are from a fire 10 years ago and I can’t help but worry about history repeating itself. The grass is so dry that it crunches under my boots with every step.
I guess it’s time to suit up and chant and spin. Anyone want to join me?

Foggy Monday

Posted in Nature, Photography by leahyetter on March 26, 2012
©Leah Yetter Photographer

The Cooney Hills through a blanket of fog.

It’s a beautiful morning here on the ranch. I love when there is a blanket of fog through the meadows. The damp air is a nice change from the dry temps we have experienced these last few weeks.

I captured this image on the way to feed the little bum calf this morning. He’s a little spitfire y’all!

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.

The Big Hoorah

Posted in Nature, Photography, Wildlife by leahyetter on December 21, 2011

We drove up into the hills to put out salt and mineral for the cows when Patrick spotted movement about a mile away with his hyper-vision. It was a herd of Bull Elk fighting on a flat.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Just look at this guy in the top right. He would circle the herd, run toward the hill and then turn back around to charge one of the others.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

He’d go at it with one…

©Leah Yetter Photographer

…and turn around to fight another.

I’m sure glad these guys made it through hunting season. Such an awesome sight to see in our backyard.

Autumn Snowfall on Squaw Mountain

Posted in Nature, Photography by leahyetter on October 27, 2011

©Leah Yetter Photographer

The snow has pretty much melted at the ranch but the high country is white and fluffy. I captured Squaw Mountain yesterday while the snow was quietly falling. I’m happy she gets to have a cool down period after overheating this summer.

Sunlit Hills

Posted in Nature, Photography, Stormy Skies by leahyetter on April 15, 2011

After a fog and snow filled day yesterday, the sun came out late evening to melt it all away

The Cooney Hills were in the spotlight for a little while before clouds moved in again and it quickly grew dark.
One thing that I am enjoying about these little spurts of snow is when it all melts away, the grass is beaming with delight. And today it’s is shining bright and the air is still. I’ll be outside if you need me. Have a great weekend my friends!

The Hills Look Cold

Posted in Photography, Winter by leahyetter on February 4, 2011

The wind has picked up, that means it might be warming up. You know, maybe a bit above zero or so.

When the wind pushes the snow around, it looks like theatre smoke. It floats around roads like fog in the woods of a scary movie.

Pictured here is the road to the South Ranch with a beautiful view the Richeau Mountains.

Have a happy and warm weekend!

Sunset Meditation

Posted in Photography, The Ranch by leahyetter on January 13, 2011

It’s quiet out here except for the howling winds and the snow crunching under my boots. Not much cowboy’ing happens in the winter, just gathering cattle here and there and haying when the snow is high. We’re getting prepared for calving and if all goes as planned, we should start sometime in March. But bulls can be pretty sly and if any of them jumped the fence before the planned conception, we’ll be starting earlier. In the meantime, I plan to meditate with the peaceful sunsets over snow capped mountains because soon, our days and nights will filled with ups and downs, mooing and bawling.

Peace & Love,  Leah

Scenic Drive Through the Mountains

Posted in Nature, Photography, Travel, Wildlife by leahyetter on September 29, 2010

We weren’t sure where we wanted to go so we jumped in the truck and just drove. It was a beautiful day and I wanted the folks to see our surroundings. Along the way, we caught this Mule deer relaxing in the brush.

We happened upon this quiet ranch. The fresh hay bales means someone is there but at first glance we thought it was abandoned.

We got out of the truck to take in the view and breathe the fresh mountain air. As I walked along a short trail, I stepped on this rock and had to take a picture of it. It came home with me needless to say.

We saw all kinds of wildlife but of course antelope were everywhere we went. You can’t go anywhere without spotting hundreds of these guys in various pastures. But the thing that is a constant frustration to me and Dad with photographing wildlife is that we always get butt shots. They are always running from us and we’re sick of all the rear ends in our lens. So don’t be surprised if one day there is a post on this blog with strictly deer and antelope butts!

But as this one got away, I was glad that the grass covered his backside and I got a good view of his horns.

Curious Fawn, Radiant Sky

Posted in Home, The Ranch, Uncategorized, Wildlife by leahyetter on September 15, 2010

This fawn and I were out enjoying the sunset when we spotted each other through the tall grass.

We sat together for a little while enjoying the breeze. The sky was radiant as the sun set behind the mountains.

It’s just another beautiful Wednesday. That’s all.

Home: Where Troubles Melt Like Lemon Drops

Posted in Home by leahyetter on August 15, 2010

We had a nice time at The Vinyud and I always enjoy getting home and back into a regular routine after a vacation. Oh who am I kidding, there’s no regular routine around here. But smelling the manure and sage again is comforting and puts a smile on my slightly sun soaked face.

Even the clouds and hills welcomed us home with a smile.

Summertime is covered in dragonflies out here in the country. My little blue friend greeted me on the porch while I sipped my coffee the morning after we arrived home. He was happy to see the camera again.

We were also welcomed with another double rainbow . We took an evening drive for groceries and the town was lit up with this colorful streak of light in the sky.

There really is no place like home.

A Quiet Drive to Nowhere

Posted in Nature, Travel, Wildlife by leahyetter on July 15, 2010

On a recent lazy Sunday, we took a drive through the Snowy Range within the Medicine Bow National Forest in Wyoming. It was absolutely beautiful. There was still snow in some parts and Patrick pointed out where he and his buddies drive, er um race, their snow sleds in the dead of winter. I’m still not sure I’ve got the nerve to do it but we’ll see come this winter.

We came across this guy sunning on a rock.  He’s a yellow-bellied marmot or Rock chuck.

Rock chuck in the Medicine Bow National Forest

This young buck stopped for a smile while having a drink in this peaceful stream.

Buck Mule Deer

This little guy was perched on a fence when we stopped at a friends house in the mountains just across the Wyoming/Colorado border.

Mountain Chipmunk

no-name road through the mountains

I just love these drives in the middle of nowhere. It feels like we are the only people on earth.

The Laramie Plains

Posted in Cattle Roundup, Nature, Ranching, Wildlife by leahyetter on July 13, 2010

The cows are spending the summer on the Laramie Plains and we go check on them from time to time. I use the term “we” loosely because Patrick goes  way more often than I do. But I like to think I do some good on these trips. Hey, I’ve got cows eating cake right out of my hands remember? Anywho, we see a lot of wildlife in this wide open space and I can’t help but share some of the beauty with you once again.

Twin Baby Antelope waiting for momma


The cows were happy to see us. They gobbled up the salt and mineral. They look really good and tubby out there.


The bulls were not so happy to see us. They never are.

Staring contest with a bull can be scary.

But it didn’t stop them from attempting to get their groove on.

He's asking her if she wants to "see the inside of his truck".

Patrick spotted these guys as I got out of the truck to open a  gate.

Bucks Running Wild

And I almost stepped on these. Thank goodness Patrick saw them before I became Godzilla and destroyed their town and family.

Grounded Birds Nest

As we were leaving, we finally spotted our first state flower of the year.  You know it’s summer when you finally see Indian Paintbrush.

Indian Paintbrush, the state flower

more Indian Paintbrush

This guy needed to check us out before we went through his gate. We said hello and went our separate ways.

Curious Horse

It was a good day.

The Gathering of the Bulls

Posted in Cattle Roundup, Wild Life by leahyetter on June 24, 2010

On Fathers Day, it seemed only appropriate to gather the bulls from the distant meadows to eventually put them in with the cows. The calves are growing up so it’s time to make new ones. We don’t want the cows to suffer from empty nest syndrome now do we? On this particular day, the bulls were quite agreeable and didn’t give us much trouble at all.

They marched through the meadows like good soldiers. Except for the occasional snort and kicking of dirt, it was a slow and easy process.

It  took a little convincing but they made it through the gate without any hassle.

They stopped for a quick snack of flowering yucca weed.

And they made the turn into the corral nice and easy. But this was only the first set of bulls that needed gathering.

The next day we released the bulls with the cows for a little flirting and baby making.

Fast forward to yesterday when it was time to get the last of the bulls. I thought hey no big deal, just like earlier in the week, we’ll get them right in no problem. Well, I was terribly mistaken. These guys were a lot feistier than the previous group. The fighting started almost immediately.

It got rougher and tougher as time went on.

We started to worry that they might drown. They kind of look like hippos don’t they?

They started to slow it down and just stood head to head in a definite power struggle.

This guy was getting sick of the fighting too. He just stood there bellowing trying to beak them up.

Once they got out of the water, it started all over again.

We did get them into the corral and they will be placed with the cows eventually. It’s a good thing, they need to release that testosterone and fast!

May 24th, Snow in the High Country

Posted in Cattle Roundup, Stormy Skies by leahyetter on May 24, 2010

Yes folks, this day in May the wind howled and snow fell. Patrick grabbed my camera and took a couple shots of the mountains behind the house.

Squaw Mountain. Image by Patrick McGuire.

The Lawrence. Image by Patrick McGuire.


Gathering Pairs

We worked all day Sunday. The weather was much better yesterday than today. We got 43 mommas and their babies paired up to be trucked to the Laramie Plains today for more grazing.

John’s cow dog, Dixie, did a great job. She perched at the top of the hill until John told her to come. She’s very obedient and works hard.

Dixie, down.

Dixie and I sat at the top of the hill and watched the cowboys work.

They're all down the hill thankfully.

They all crossed the creek by golly!

Once in the main corral, we had to make sure the babies were paired up with momma and then put them in separate corrals for the big delivery. They are going to love the Plains. The grass is getting greener by the day.

Cowboy Cutting

We needed to get a few more pairs from the meadows. I was told to get behind the fence and DON’T BE SEEN!

Watching through the knot hole. I'm hiding, Patrick!

Through the knot hole: Ron and Patrick work their magic.

Sunday Roundup

Posted in Cattle Roundup, Home by leahyetter on May 2, 2010

This morning it was time to gather the cattle to move them to a new meadow. I took the lead in the Rhino and Patrick and Shadow, the cow dog, brought up the rear on foot. I had cake in the back so they were more than happy to follow me.

It was a beautiful morning with blue skies, lots of sunshine and very low winds.

We got them across the river and into the meadow and it was time for cake. When Patrick isn’t looking, I’m spoiling them.

OOPS! He spotted me and grabbed the camera.

Their tongues and rougher than kitty tongues. But they are gentle when they eat from my fingers.

The last of the calves are entering the meadow. We’ll check tomorrow for any stragglers that didn’t run with the herd.

Next it was time to repair the fences in this meadow. You can spot the Ranch back there with the green roof.

We fenced for a couple of hours, turned around and could no longer see the Ranch. Only a storm coming our way. We high-tailed it back to the house.

I spotted these tiny flowers along the way. If you know what this is, will you let me know?

We got home covered in snow. It only lasted a few minutes before the sun came back out and continued to be a beautiful day.

April Showers

Posted in Home by leahyetter on April 23, 2010

There has been a steady rainfall here since Wednesday. The cows are wet and grumpy.

I’m not so grumpy because when the sun finally comes out, there will be some beautiful green landscapes to photograph.

Patrick has to watch over the irrigation ditches and create dams in the river so we don’t have a  flood.

The water is high and the Laramie River is rushing. It is beautiful.

The wind is howling tonight and snow is in the forecast. Looking forward to what Saturday has in store.

Calving time on the Dakota Ranch

Posted in Calving by leahyetter on March 28, 2010

Calving time on the Dakota Ranch:

We’re calving here on the ranch and these shots are from a couple of days ago. The snow is pretty much gone today but the wind has picked up. It’s been blowing at about 30mph.

This little one and her mother got across the creek so we needed to trot them through the fence to join the others. To quote Patrick “Pip-squeak is running the show here”. The mother is playing along. The calves frolic like puppies.

I learned how to hum like momma to get the calf to follow. This one is just a couple days old and the new mom couldn’t get baby to follow her out of the corral. In comes Leah in the 6 inches of snow humming and walking along the fence line to get them to follow. I loved every minute of it and calf and momma were grateful.

We check on them several times a day to make sure everyone is well and suckling and eating. And sometimes they bust through fences so Patrick has to go to them and shoo them out of off limit areas. This calf needed a little assistance to get through the fence.

Back with mom.

Hey lady, where’s the grub?

No really. I wanna eat.


And I love visiting these 2 young ones. They love showing off for the the camera.

Nothing like pulling into the driveway with calves in the drive. I love those faces!

And in the front yard.