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  • Writer's pictureJ. A. Thomas

It was a great gather in the wrong field!

I relate today a true story of a recent gather I was helping with. I have a friend that graciously invites me and my horse to help gather in their cows. 'He maybe using me to get to my great horse Tom', but hey I get to gather anyway. :)

As usual we are out before the sun is up or even really shining. I get out there and after saddling and waiting around for those that only have to start their motorcycle we are told to head out. Now I have not gathered that much with them and only in this field once. I should have mentioned that this ranch is something like 15K acres. Not sure how many fields they have nor the size of them. We sometimes ride out from the ranch house and others truck up a back road to a second set of corrals and gather there, so needless to say it is a big ranch. Well there are three of us on horses and we are given the signal to head out.

We have to go through several gates and take turns opening the barbwire gates. I am thankful that I have a great horse that stands and waits patiently while doing this as well as waiting for the others when they do. No dancing horse for me. I defer to the expert cowboy who does this for a living and has ridden here more than me. He is one of those great working horse cowboys who knows just where to be and is. No real hurry in him but he gets there when needed. The other rider is a girl that the ranch has recently hired to help with the horses and around the ranch, and I don't believe she had been to this part of the ranch yet. Well we are spreading out after going through the last gate. I get my orders on where to be and which direction to go once we get the herd and head out to the top of a hill.

I am noticing what looks like a hill that has a ring of rocks strategically placed around the rim. I think to myself, 'I don't think i've gathered this field before.' I am admiring the ring that indeed goes all the way around and just wondering what took place. Was it a stand off from i

Indians, was it Chinese defending their claims, was it gold miners, who built this and why? When off in the distance I hear a cry. "Your in the wrong field!".


I look over and the other horse people are heading back also. Well it would appear that we went through one to many gates and we're on the neighbors property. I was right I hadn't gathered that field. Well we got over to the correct field and had a mediocre gather. There were a lot of mama cows and small babies that we gathered and processed at the main ranch. It ended well and we had a great day.

Pretty much any day on my horse is an amazing day.

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