Why are we at Monte’s Ranch in Colorado? Of course we love to visit Monte, but this time we are here specifically so Storm can help Monte build cattle guards. Monte allows a small herd of cattle to graze his land. Apparently cows have boundary issues and Monte is tired of them wandering through his front yard. They often stop to eat the sparse grass in the shade under his porch.
Why the cows are hungry
The cows are struggling because the weather here is hot, dry and severely unhumid. What little grass they can find is well done and crispy already. I mentioned in my earlier post that we varied our route on the way to Monte’s in order to avoid wildfires. There is such a high danger of fires in this county that smoking outside is forbidden (I am not making that up). In fact it may now be illegal for me to type the word Fi** while in this county. All the while we are here we all keep an eye on the horizon for smoke and our noses alert for the whiff of burning brush.
The Cattle Guard Project
Optimally, Storm and Monte will complete 2 guards – one for the main gate and one for the fence line around Monte’s house. The main gate guard will keep the cattle on the ranch. The fence line guard should bar them from his yard. The reality is that the guys do complete all the components for both guards. But they only have time to install the one at the main gate before we must leave.
Installing the main gate guard is most important. Its installation relieves Monte of the need to close the gate each time someone arrives or departs. In a high wind with the 2 gate sections blowing in opposite directions or at night when the gates vanish into the dark, chaining them together can be a challenge. Monte looks forward to having the option of leaving the gates unfastened without chancing the loss of errant cows.
Cattle Guard How-To
If building cattle guards for your ranch are in the cards for you soon, here are step-by-step photos to assist in your project.