A wild cow tale
In the 1970s, my husband Steve was the cow foreman for La Sal Livestock. He had a good rapport with the ranchers in the area.
One of those was Harvey Blankenagel. He and his wife Norma owned and operated Rattlesnake Ranch west of La Sal. They ran a nice herd of mixed breed cattle.
One year, Harvey bought a little red bull to throw into the herd. Trouble was this critter was a roamer. He was never where he was supposed to be and not doing his job.
Steve found him in among his cows one day and rounded him up, put him in a corral and called Harvey to tell him where he could pick up his wayward bull.
He met Harvey there and they tried and tried to get that bull loaded into the back of Harvey’s pickup. He had a slide-in stock rack that was big enough to hold one critter.
But the bull was having none of it. He kept chasing these two cowmen but refused to load in the pickup.
Finally, the Steve hit upon a plan. He would run up into the stock rack, and the bull would follow him in and Harvey would slam the gate shut on him.
Lo and behold, the plan worked! Steve got the bull to chase him and ran up into the back of the pickup. As soon as he was in the pickup, Harvey slammed the gate.
Meanwhile, Steve had gone up over the headache rack, the roof of the truck and down the hood and out of harm’s way. Harvey then got into the truck and headed down the road straight to the sale barn. Goodbye little troublemaker bull.
Not very far into the journey he heard the sound of hoof beats on top of his truck. It was definitely not the sound of Santa’s miniature reindeer. That was soon evidenced as a large bovine hoof came through the windshield.
Seems the bull was a quick study as he followed the path of the cowboy thinking it a good idea and escape route. Up over the headache rack he went.
Then over the cab, over the hood –Harvey looked up to see his little bull hightailing it down the country. He just turned his truck for home.
The bull had escaped on a grazing allotment held by Wilcox Ranches. He knew next time they rounded up their cattle he’d get a call from Max Wilcox saying he’d found Harvey’s bull and telling him where he had corralled the bull so Harvey could pick it up.
It’s a ranch neighborly kind of thing.