As I’ve often stated, though it is the shortest month on the calendar February can often seem very much the lengthiest on Cariboo cattle establishments.
By now producers are bored with the repetition of daily feeding chores and quite honestly, in need of a bit of fresh company; longing for a few signs indicating the onset of spring.
They will seize almost any opportunity (excuse) to get away from the place, if only for a few short hours!
A mid-month cattle sale at BC Livestock Co-op yards was an apt illustration.
On Feb. 13, as I approached the turnoff to Cattle Drive from Highway 97, I was shocked to see an already jam-packed parking lot.
Most of the space was taken by oversize farm vehicles, the Stockmen’s Cafe was crowded, almost all of the ringside seats in the auction arena had butts planted in them and an excited, anticipatory buzz hummed through the place.
Local cattlemen/women had turned up in droves; with cattle to sell, to get a read on the current-market-prices, many more just for the chance to have a good chin-wag with like-minded souls.
It was a good day with prices on the high-end.
The producers pocketing cheques were downright gleeful as they scurried back to home-base bearing happy news.
Optimism was present in good supply.
That feeling carried over into the next week, obvious by attendance numbers at the Cariboo Cattlemen’s Association — annual general meeting held (February 20) in Williams Lake.
Most seats were occupied, the meeting followed the usual pattern; adoption of agenda, previous minutes, reports, etc.
Then introduction of new concepts/programs awakened interest; one of which was a proposed new agriculture-based course of studies (TRU, Williams Lake campus/planning stages) which is intended to be an innovative offering derived with direct input from local operators to the needs/requirements applicable to local agricultural production.
Liz Twan is a rancher and freelance columnist for the Tribune/Advisor.