Archive

Archive for June, 2011

From The Drivers Seat

For those wondering about what it is like to put up hay on our ranch, I have tried to put together some short videos to give a sense of what takes place.

Swathing / Cutting

We wait until the dew has burned off the hay before cutting. It is important that the water has been turned off and that the ground moisture has dropped to a point so moisture does not transfer from the ground to the hay, preventing proper drying.

Raking

We rake in the early morning, while there is still dew on the windrow with alfalfa, so the leaves stay on the stem and the stems do not break. Grass hay is raked in the afternoon, with out dew, so it does not get trapped and cause mildew.

Baling

We bale grass and grass-alfalfa hay in the early evening and early afternoon, so it is soft, but not damp. Dew is not our friend when baling grass as it will cause the hay to mildew and mold. With alfalfa, it makes the best hay when baled in the morning as the dew is coming off, but we also bale in the late night/early morning as the dew is coming on when our windows for morning baling are short. We want the dew with the alfalfa, so we do not lose leaves off the stem and the stems do not shatter.

Silencing A Vote… Despicable!

The We Draw The Lines Commission has released the 1st draft of the proposed map for redistricting the California Assembly, Senate and Congressional lines. This proposal is based on the November 2010 elections and census.  For Scott Valley the proposal spells DISASTER!

Senator Doug LaMalfa and Assemblyman Jim Nielsen have been outstanding supporters of water and property rights in Siskiyou County and Scott Valley. Additionally, Congressman Wally Herger has also served us well at the Federal level, particularly with National Forest and endangered species issues. With the newly proposed lines, they will no longer be our representatives.

The Scott Valley watershed has been cut away from the rest of Siskiyou County to become part of the North Coast. This is wrong and irresponsible of the commission. Currently, residents only have to drive an hour and a half to reach their elected representatives offices. Under the new proposal, we are looking at a four and half hour drive in the summer and more than a six-hour drive in the winter. We will essentially be cut off from representation.

I urge you all to contact the commission and let them know of the error they are making and REQUEST that a hearing be held in Yreka to discuss the issue.

Speak up and make your voice heard or you all shall be silenced in the near future. We must remain in Assembly District 2, Senate District 4 and Congressional District 2. Call 866-356-5217 AND submit online comments to the We Draw The Lines Commission at http://wedrawthelines.ca.gov/contact.html.

A friend of mine on twitter sent me a link to a site that provides some good advice on what to include when you are providing input to the commission. http://redistrictinggroup.org/participate/developing-information-about-your-community/.

Can You Assist Me?

Gotta love the way horses help each other out.

Jessie and Digger

Jessie and Digger Helping Each Other Get An Itch

H.U.D. – Horrifically & Unbelievably Dissipative

Years ago, my grandfather put a two bedroom, single bath mobile home next to the barn. It has air conditioning, a working fireplace, stove, oven, refrigerator, free water and free trash, a large yard and is nestled underneath six large oak trees. It was his desire to offer this domicile to folks who were down on their luck, strapped for cash, on a fixed income or simply needed a place to get their feet back under themselves. Over the years we’ve had individuals, young and retired couples live in the home for a few months at a time and as long as 11 years. Many people have been able to catch back up and move ahead. It has also served as a benefit to have someone living in the barnyard to keep potential deviants away.

Since my wife and I have taken over, we have continued to honor my grandfathers wishes. A retired couple was in the home, until the husband required more immediate medical attention. We then had a newly married couple live in the home, have a daughter and they have now been able to afford a bigger home. This brings us to the past week…. Read more…

What’s Wrong With the EPA…

A lively #agchat discussion on the EPA last night prompted some further discussion on twitter during the after party. 140 characters was just not enough so I have thrown together some further thoughts here.

First, I have no doubt that the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency), CEPA (California Environmental Protection Agency), CAQCB (California Air Quality Control Board), CWRCB (California Water Quality Control Board) and the NCWQCB (North Coast Water Quality Control Board) were all implemented with the best of intentions. However, we all know where the road goes that is paved with good intentions.  My comments are on all of these agencies as they overlap and often work together to address the same issues that I have been involved with. Also, these thoughts are from my personal experience in dealing with these agencies as they relate to my area: National Forest, private timber, irrigated and non-irrigated ag land, water quality and salmonid habitat. Read more…

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