Friday, October 31, 2008


Weather continues to be very nice at the end of October. Highs from 78-83° and lows in 40's. The tank is getting low again from what little rain we have had overall. We are getting rain, but just not enough for run off.

I finished clearing along the new trail and did have two brush fires burning, one on top of the mountain and one below. The trail looks good. I would clear more, but there are areas closer to the house that needs work and has a higher priority.

While clearing I kept playing tag with a deer. I'd be on one end and she would move to the other. Then I would work the other end and she went opposite. I thought it was a goat at first as she wouldn't move too far. I saw a flock of huge turkey just down the county road. They have been taking advantage of the good grasses, grain, and feed. These were all very big birds.

I did drive up to Meridian to renew an auto tag and saw our Congressman at the courthouse. Good to see he is paying some attention to Bosque County during the campaign.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Great Weather

October has always been my favorite month. College Football, the World Series, and best of all cooler weather. The evenings are getting cool and the days are pleasant. We actually had a freeze warning for this morning although I don't think it got that cold. We were away from the ranch in mid-month but we got a good two+ inches of rain and everything looked very good when we got home. The grass looks wonderful and has greened-up in areas that had already gone dormant. Many of the Spanish Oaks have started to turn color this week. Gary Mountain looks very nice looking out the office window. I've seen the fall wildflowers come out as well.

Yesterday the mail man dropped off a book I had ordered, Texas Gardening the Natural Way by Howard Garrett. I listen to him on the radio when I get a chance and of course have ONLY used natural products on Twisted Oak Ranch. I was actually living the 'natural way' before the 'Dirt Doctor' even thought about it and fed my plants with brewed tea long before 'Garrett Juice' or compost tea became popular. I mention this as yesterday I set out some garlic that some neighbors have given me. The neighbors place is well known locally for their garlic and I dug some up for transfer over the weekend. I plan on using the garlic in my cooking and to make garlic sprays for the garden as recommended by the new book.

The deer have not been as active around my feeders as usual although I did see a nice buck this morning about 9:30 am which I thought was late. Although now that I think of it that's about the time I do see the really big bucks. I guess it's the TOR deer that come at dusk and dawn. One reason I'm not seeing as many deer at the corn feeder is the number of acorns. I've never seen so many acorns on the ground. In some places the ground is solid with them.

Tessie is very much at home now. She loves to run and go for her walks. I guess I would too if I lived in a cage for a long time. I'm glad we rescued her. She did fall out of the gator for the second time recently. She just doesn't have a sense of balance. She won't get into the gator on her own, but you can't keep Kenzie out of it. Kenzie helps a lot as Tessie watches what she does. Kenzie rooted out an Armadillo and unseen by Kenzie it made a break for it, but Tessie chased it down a trail almost to the mountain pasture. She didn't know what to do with it, but she enjoyed running after it. Sense then she has actually tried to pick up scents when Kenzie makes her rounds. She's a house dog, but is gradually learning the ways on the ranch.

I did get back into the land clearing routine last week. The burn ban is off so I burned most of the brush I piled up when I opened the new little cross trail in August. I also did some dirt work so that there's not a big drop off the ledge. (Locals know what I mean by the ledge: These mountains are actually geologically mesas and have a limestone cap from 8-24" thick on top at about the 1000' elevation. So there is usually always a ledge between the limestone and the caliche below. It makes for nice bluffs and the cliffs you see in the area. BTW-below the caliche you hit limestone rock again.) So now the new trail is very nice for both walking and driving the gator. I still have to trim and cut cedar away from around the higher quality trees to make it look even better. And there is always cedar debris from the 1930's to clear. From just what I have already cleared there is a view to the south you can now see from the trail.

I'm still getting used to the new county road. The pea gravel on top hasn't been sweep as they want it packed as well as possible. We just don't get enough traffic to pack it much more than it probably is now though.

Monday, October 06, 2008

October Rain

We finally got some rain last night, about 1.375 inches. That's a nice rain and will probably assure grass until we get a freeze. Good for the goats and wildlife.

I have not noticed near as many small critters such as rabbits, squirrels, & raccoons around lately. I wonder if we have another big cat around? Could be the lack of water on top of the mountain though. I will watch for signs.

Update: We received another .8 of rain this evening. That's a good 2" of rain total.

Friday, October 03, 2008

Turkey Buzzards

All is still well on the Ranch. Very dry, but we still have grass.

I haven't really been doing any extra work on the ranch, just the usual goat feeding, watering, maintaining wildlife feeders, etc., but now that I have my dental work complete I hope to get back in the groove. I do feel better already. I have the chain saws back from the small engine tune up mechanic so it's time to start cutting and trimming again. I need to finish the new short cross trail and we are going to clear cedar from behind the cabin. Perhaps some cleaning along the county road. From there we will see what needs to be done.

This morning when I awoke I noticed a lot of Turkey Buzzards circling just to the west of us near my 1468 gate. We know what that means so I went down to check it out. When there are that many vultures it's usually something big like a deer and there's always a bit worry that it could be worse. Well I did find the source of their interest. There were three feral hogs along the fence row. Not sure who shot them. Could have been poachers or they could have been dumped there. We do get poachers along the road at night. One interesting thing with the new paved road is that you can actually hear cars better than before. Would not have thought that. We rarely have a car on the road as far out as I live on the county road so it will make catching poachers easier.