I already told you how our day ended when we took the heifers to the team penning and branding, and as promised I have pictures of the day. I have to tell you that I LOVED having my new camera! Its amazing to be able to stop a rope mid-air or to get the dirt flying. Mmmm...
When I was telling a friend what we on the summer weekends he couldn't believe that when we have time off to play, all we do is sort and brand heifers. Yep, we love being cowboys so much that its pretty much all we do!
Now if you're wondering what a team penning and branding is, I'll tell you. The first event is the team sort. They throw out 10 heifers (numbered 0-9) and the cowboys are given a number for the first heifer that they sort out first. Once they find her, they find the rest in the sequence until the time runs out.
The penning is really similar. Instead of finding the heifers in a sequence they have to find 3 heifers, all with the same number. Then they push them to the other end where a pen is set up (hence the reason it is called penning...).
And the late (and probably my favorite to watch) is the team branding. The teams have 4 heifers to head, heel, and brand (with pancake mix, of course). There are 4 guys to a team, 2 to rope and 2 to do the branding. They switch in the middle, so that everyone gets a turn to rope... It wouldn't be fair if they didn't, now would it!
I'll admit that sometimes it can get a little long, but there are some dang good horses that can make an awesome cut. There are a few little bloopers along the way that always make it exciting. They did a youth penning team that was so fun to watch. These kids are on the way too be some stinking' good cowboys (sadly I had my camera put away at this point...). Then we end the day with some dang good ropers! That certainly includes my cowboy, The Rancher... he got 2nd place! Enough winnings to pay for supper, what more could a wife ask for!