Monday, May 4, 2009

Making their marks

Setting the brand; dragging to the crew; el bossmán

Attended an early branding yesterday. Pretty small one actually, but good folks there. The neighbors all turn out for brandings, both to help and to enjoy the big social event of the year. Some ranchers use calf-tables where the critters are run through a chute and then turned on their sides for the branding and cutting operation. But the brandings I like to go to are the old style rope-and-drag outfits that still depend on horses and the old ways, of which there are a-plenty around here.

(Bad focus on the boss. That's what comes of depending on auto-focus cameras. Too bad cuz it's not a half bad shot. That's all right. I'll have another crack at him.)


Roxie said...

For years, my grandfather branded his calves in the old way, with an iron rod heated on the fire. I found one of those old brands in his shop when I was about 12 and asked him about the BC brand. "Does this stand for Batie Cattle?" I asked.

"If you want it to," he answered.

How I wish I would have asked him for that old branding iron that day. It disappeared after he died and Grandma sold his shop stuff at auction.

The family retained an electric branding iron that he used at the end of his cattleman's career, but it doesn't have the same romanticism as that old branding iron did.

Deer Passion said...

I love branding time! It's one of my favorite times of the year.. I love the social aspect, the down and dirty part of it, the cows and the horses.. and well everything!!!

Love your blog too!! Keep up the good work!!

Rio Arriba said...

Hi DP-- Thanks for the kind words. I've added you to my blog list. Hope you don't mind! (If you do, just give a holler.)

Anonymous said...

I guess there are still a few pockets of history left out there. Sounds like a good time.