A surprise on a trailer
By April Baumgarten
Nothing is more devastating to a rancher than losing cattle. But six ranchers and a veterinarian are doing what they can to help two South Dakota cattlemen get back into the corral after a disastrous blizzard.
“If I was in that guy’s circumstance and somebody did this for me, it would be very, very much appreciated,” rancher Wade Staigle of Center. “If I had been 30 years old I think where we would have been financially.”
The owner of Mandan Lake Simmentals has spearheaded an effort to collect donation heifers for two young ranchers that lost cattle during an October blizzard in South Dakota. After talking with several ranchers and getting papers the cattleman was able to haul eight heifers.
The unseasonal winter storm hit Oct. 10 with unexpected force, first dropping freezing rain followed by high winds and heavy snow. Approximately 4 feet fell in western South Dakota, killing more than 22,000 cattle along with thousands of other farm animals.
“You wake up that morning and you have lost half your herd, you sit back in your chair and wonder how you are going to make this work,” he said. “To think you are on top of the world with 160 head and then that storm hits.”