February 13, 2013


You know that saying, “The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence.” I’ve got some bulls that think that, but then again, maybe it isn’t the grass they are attracted to!
I’m here to tell you today that the grass is often times drier on the other side of the fence. If there is any grass at all.
Dad and I went on a little road trip. News of the severe drought in Wyoming and Montana is forcing a lot of ranchers to sell cows. We decided we would drive down to Torrington, Wyo., for a cow sale.
Now, I’ve been through some pretty dry deals. 2002 was a dry son-of-a-gun in southern North Dakota and 2008 pretty much wiped out the hay and crops in this part of the country. There were a lot of other dry years, but these were the most recent.
Last year, I went down to Amarillo, Texas, and saw areas that hadn’t had rain for months, with temperatures over 100 degrees scorching the earth. Well, I’ll tell you this, you drive across Wyoming and it’s as bad as you can imagine.
Oh, it looks tough at Amidon, and south, right around Bowman, it looks pretty good. They’ve caught a few showers. I thought Harding County was dry. It usually is, but on the way home, Harding County looked pretty darn good after seeing the bare earth and dry water holes from Sundance to Torrington.
The smoke from the Colorado fires hung over Torrington like fog the morning after a nice rain, but it dang sure wasn’t fog. Your eyes burned and your throat hurt. My body yearned for a drink, but then again, it often does. I drink a lot of water.
There was a bright spot. On the way home we went by Devil’s Tower north of Sundance and then we spent the night in Hulett, Wyo. It has to be one of the prettiest, friendliest places on the planet. The Belle Fourche river runs through Hulett and it’s just a green, pretty place.
We didn’t spend a lot of time there, just overnight, but we had a steak supper and a nice drink. We were in bed by 8:30 and on the road by 4 a.m. the next morning.
If you are tired of the oil field traffic, then I would suggest a stay at Hulett. Get up at 4 a.m., go north to Alzada and continue north to the Camp Crook road, get off on the gravel and angle across to Camp Crook. Go north and jump the river and head north to Rhame.
We drove 100 miles before we met a vehicle! No lie, 100 miles, and then I dang near hit the vehicle because I was looking at a herd of antelope off to the side. That would have been almost funny!