Haying with Horses


The Campbells had three separate bunk house rooms for their summer help that were occupied by Rusty, Bill and myself.  I am an early riser so I volunteered to get two beef cows to milk from the far stretches of the pasture .  That often was a half mile from the ranch.  Later in the summer I also busted the beaver dams the beavers built over night that naturally flooded the meadow but now were covered with drying hay.  My first few days they had me slit fire wood while the rest of the crew was cutting hay.  I had a physical hard work job but the horse drivers had it worse those first few days adapting to driving horses.  Mrs. Campbell made excellent meals on a wood stove and was busy all day preparing meals for us.  Haying was a big deal and the Campbells did the best to show their appreciations.  Marlene and Nelson, neighbors, were also part of the haying team.  Kevin’s sister Catherine, and a neighbor girl Julie,  tended the cattle in the leased federal lands.  They came off the mountain to eat breakfast and supper with the rest of us it was that good! Biscuits, pancakes, spare ribs, steaks, all baked deserts and bread, fruit preserves, and fresh vegetables were superb.  

The hard work and companionship we had was very special.  Our harvesting hay with horses was undoubtably the last of an era in the west.  There was no television or radio out here and I was aware of that before hand.  The peacefulness was great for sleeping soundly and I did not get any lonely anxieties, as many who were not used to “wilderness quiet”, because I was very fortunate to have the Book of Mormon my friends had given me.  I enjoy reading and this book did not disappoint.  By summer’s end I had read the entire book.  My memory of the book at that time was it had many unique stories that to me did not tie in with each other like a novel would.  I wanted to believe the stories were true because they aspired me to be a better person.  But to become a Mormon; No way.  First week in September haying was done, I got paid with a check and headed to Rexburg, Idaho to meet up with my friends.


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