We have a recurring situation with a ‘water gap’. A water gap is a stretch of fence that crosses a creek. Twice this spring it has rained buckets which causes the creek to rise quickly and all the floating debris demolishes the ‘water gap’. ‘Debris’ as in logs and trees not ‘debris’ as in garbage.
Consequently our steers venture out on a ‘walk about’. But this time they came home on their own. That’s the good news. The bad news is that they brought about 50 of their new best friends back with them. The neighbors cows and calves.
We only had 14 steers in that pasture. If you add 50 cows and calves and do the math that equals a problem. T.H. said we better get right on it. Which means while he’s fixing the water gap I ride out and see where the party is located. He wants me to see if they’re in an easy place to gather and then report back to him. (I’m just the hired help) I found them and rode back to T.H.to give him my “report”. T.H.(who is afoot, by the way) made the fatal error of saying “You’ll never get them in. We better try it in the morning with more help”. I said “Bet me.” ( sic “Bite me”)
I knew Puncher and Paint and I could get them in but it wouldn’t be pretty or quick. I didn’t care because he couldn’t see or hear us until we got close up to the pens. That’s what happens when you’re afoot. You can’t see or hear stuff. And you don’t get to be the boss anymore. I turned my phone off just in case. Then we commenced to having some fun.
We rode back out to the cattle and I almost got my horse stuck in the sandy creek bottom. Note to self….”Start choosing your crossings more carefully.” Hopefully T.H. won’t notice the evidence of my stupidity. That would have been such a bummer to walk back and ask him to help me get my horse un-stuck.
OK. Deep breath and carry on. These cattle aren’t used to horses and dogs too much. They run towards us to check us out. Puncher persuades them to move on.
The cattle weren’t all in one bunch so as we rode north we would push bunches cattle south (down stream ) to give them a kick start. We rode to the north fence which was still in tact.
When we got there and turned around, we started shoving everything in sight down into the creek bottom. Mostly because that’s where they wanted to go.
I knew we didn’t have them all but I was certain that with all the noise the cows were making the rest would file out.
They did. This time I crossed where the cattle crossed. That’s what smart(er) cowgirls do.
Puncher was pushing and biting them. I was sending her out through the trees where I couldn’t go.
It was awesome !
I sent her out to get this calf. The calf would have come back on his own but it’s fun for her. Plus no one is here to stop me. I’m the boss. Remember?
The cattle split up on both sides of the creek. I sent Puncher out to keep them moving south. She won’t bog down in the creek like Paint. ( I hope he forgives me someday)
We put them in the pens and sorted off our 14 steers. Sorry , I have no pictures here because T.H. wanted me to get off my horse and sort on foot with him. It was a short discussion. Been there done that. Got the ant bites.
When we turned the cows back out to start them home they ran the wrong direction north. T.H. had a little bitty meltdown while we galloped back up the creek and turned them around. Good thing I was still on my horse. I didn’t feel it necessary to point this out to him. I’ve done so much inner work that I’m not like that anymore. And besides, by the time we were finished sorting we weren’t speaking again.
It’s really hard to outrun cattle when you are afoot. I’ve never been successful at that.
The gate is in the corner and believe me, these girls know where it is. They are resigned. Their party is over.
It was a party for me too. I love moving cattle.
What would they call a cowgirl who went around cutting fences so she could round-up the cattle just for fun?
Crazier than I already am.
Love, Cowgirl Red aka Terah
P.S. It’s purely fiction to insinuate that I would cut a fence to get my thrills in life. And besides, I don’t pack fencing pliers on my saddle, un-like every cowboy I know……. Think about that.