The past few weeks found my family traversing across northern Nevada gathering cattle and branding calves. My husband and I successfully convinced the kids that this would be a perfectly acceptable summer vacation. It wasn’t until people along the way began to question the wisdom of taking seven horses and six dogs on a summer vacation that the kids began to doubt the wisdom of their parents. It may not have been a typical relaxing vacation but we had a great time doing what our family enjoys doing: riding horses and working cattle.
Throughout our trip we logged a lot of miles in the saddle and in the pick-up. Many hours of roping and branding, but we also made time to check out the scenic country in Nevada: O’neil Basin, Ruby Valley and the Jarbidge Mountains. Not everyone appreciates the beauty of northern Nevada and the drought has certainly left its mark, but I love this rugged country.
Our cattle know this country inside and out. The cows know where to find each water trough and salt lick. It’s our job to make sure they have enough feed and move them to the next field in the rotation when they have grazed off about 50% of the available forage.
All in all, it was a great couple of weeks and the kids are already making plans for our next working vacation!