Shipping Cattle

You know how it feels when you have a gigantic basket of laundry to fold. If you’re like me, it’s a weight on your shoulders. I hate laundry. And sometimes the mountain is so large, you figure why bother?? That’s how Darrin feels about the feed lot. It’s a constant basket of hungry mouths that have to be fed. But this weekend, his weight became a little less.


Four trucks from JBS Feeders out of Malta, Idaho pulled onto the ranch to load up about 200 head of cattle.



Each truck can hold about 58 animals. The trucks are actually bi-level. The steers are directed up a ramp to the upper deck or down a ramp to the bottom deck.


They can stay in the trailer for up to 28 hours. This trip to Idaho will be 500 miles and will take about 7-8 hours.


 This is Matt and Matt. They own their own trucks and have contracts with JBS. So they basically drive all over the countryside picking up and dropping off heads of cattle. Matt, the one closest to the camera, says he has spent every night except one for the past 6 months in his sleeper cab inside his truck. The one lucky night he got a bed? It was at his ex-girlfriend’s house.  Maybe not so lucky! Matt, the one farther from my camera, says he drove 200,000 miles last year. Willie had it wrong when he sang to mamas not let their babies grow up to be cowboys. He should have said truckers!!


After loading up all the steers, Matt and Matt drove past pastures filled with cows and heifers about to give birth. And in the months to come, those calves will once again fill Darrin laundry basket just like Eva and Domi’s clothes fill mine.

It’s never ending! 







About Wendy D

I was born in San Francisco and ended up marrying a rancher in Reno, Nevada. I have a big city job anchoring the 5 o’clock news but come home to the country where my husband’s family has ranched for 5 generations.

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