This is our plane. It is a 1946 Canadian made plane called a Fleet Canuck. It was built to train pilots for WWII. It is aerobatic, although usually my husband just keeps it flying straight and level. Growing up, my dad used a plane on our farm, so it was natural for me when my husband also was a pilot.
Many ranches use planes and helicopters as tools. They are very useful to quickly and efficiently check large tracks of land. Right now our cows and calves are spread over 5 large tracks of land, about 150,000 acres. Checking all those cows can put a large amount of wear and kilometres on a vehicle!
With our plane we are able to check the herd in about 1 hour. This plane is perfect for the job because it can fly low and slow enough. If we do see something on the ground that catches our eye, we can get in close enough to see what’s happening.
Ranchers also use their planes to go and return quickly, as they want to go to the Bull Sale but they also know they have to get home to get the work done. Interesting though, there is a saying, “Time to spare, go by air!” Meaning you might get to your destination, weather roll in, and then your grounded until the weather improves. Not always does it save you time, but it is a lot of fun!