This was the monster wagan we towed 170 km. This wagon is 9 feet wide and over 14 feet tall. I say “whef we made it” because I was very, very nervous we would get stopped by the D.O.T. The Department of Transport is the governing group that monitors big rig transports, etc, on our highways. To most ranchers D.O.T. is ‘swear’ word because it always seems they show up at the most inopportune times. What we feel is safe to transport, the D.O.T. usually does not agree! Thus, we were so happy to get that monster home and off of the road! This was only a $7000 wagon, and if we hired someone to haul it, that could have added $3000 to the bill. As ranchers, we sometimes have no choice but to get the job done. Wether that is pulling huge wagons down the highway, or running full-out, down hill on a green broke horse. This is what we call ‘sporting’!
The piece of equipment is called a High Dump. We bought it from a Dairy, and it is one of the implements used for putting up Silage. Here is a picture of our old High Dump dumping a load.
Silage is fermented, high-moisture stored feed which can be fed to ruminants (cud-chewing animals such as cattle and sheep). It is fermented and stored in a process called ensiling, and is usually made from grass/alfalfa crops and cereals. Packing the freshly chopped forage and covering the pile with plastic, removes the oxygen which preserves the feed. Silage is made either by placing cut green vegetation in a silo, by piling it in a large heap covered with a plastic sheet, or by wrapping large bales in plastic film. We put ours into a bunker in the ground. Properly made silage smells sweet and good (to us), but silage exposed to oxogen turns to compost and stinks. Our 5 year old city friend Carter, gags when we comes to our ranch and smells it. If ensiled properly, there has been silage that has lasted for 25 years. Whereas, dryed hay looses its nutrients slowly over time, even when stored under roof.
It took 2 days for my husbands blood pressure to stabilize after pulling that thing home!