Saturday, June 26, 2010

After the Storm

View in Sleepy Eye, on the south side of the storm as it passed to the north of town.

Looking to the southwest of Sleepy Eye, as the storm passed to the east, producing some very ominous rotating clouds! Jon called me from the farm as he also watched this storm.

Damage: Pipe on our manure pump was blown over  and twisted off.  Nothing a little fixing tomorrow won't fix, but it looks bad.  We also had a number of trees lose branches thanks to the VERY strong wind (excess of 65 mph).

Pea combines parked in the field south of the farm, where they were harvesting peas up until the storm hit.  Thanks to the power outage they were waiting for the plant to re-start and send the trucks so they could unload their hoppers full of tasty peas.

Jon hooking up the generator to the power box by our milking barn, however, since we hardly ever use our generator, we didn't know it wasn't in working condition until we tried to get her running.  Thank goodness for the Linemen that got the power back and running so quickly!

Heifers checking out the storm damage, now that they were no longer afraid to be outside.

Rainbow at the end of the storm. We were definitely blessed to be so protected, family & friends are safe, crops are still standing, & buildings are undamaged.

Tonight I expected that I would be able to write about our peas being harvested today, I even have pictures and video to post, but Mother Nature had some different plans for us.  This afternoon at about 6pm, our local area saw some very serious storms move through.  We know of a couple of farms that experienced damage and some crops that were either blown over or are hailed off (hail stones shredded the plants and the fields will need to be replanted in serve cases).  One dairy farm near Courtland lost their dairy barn and had to relocate about 800 cows to various farms in the area.  Thanks to the help of area farmers they were able to safely move these animals.  I can only imagine what those girls were thinking when the roof blew off their barn!  So between tornadoes, strong winds (65mph or more) and hail (as big as 4.25 inches!) it made for an eventful evening locally.  Thanks to the wind, we experienced some damage out at the farm.  Thankfully the corn is still standing, but my in laws did lose some trees and branches from trees in their yard.  As you can see above the manure pump succumbed to the power of the winds as did my flowers planted around the milking barn. 

The biggest challenge of the night was the power outages.  We were without electricity on our farm for about 1.5 hours.  Without power we were not able to do much.  Electricity runs so much on a dairy farm: water pumps, well pumps, milk coolers, milk pumps, lights, fans, curtains, sprinklers, etc.  So our cows had no fans or water until the power came back on.  We couldn't feed calves since we didn't have hot water for them.  Without electricity we couldn't milk cows either!  Rest assured though our milk stayed cool in its insulated tank.  The milk was about 42 degrees once the power came back, definitely safe and cool.  We would usually hook up a generator, run by a tractor, but tonight we discovered that our generator is not running (will be fixed tomorrow).  So we waited patiently for the excellent linemen of our local energy cooperative to fix the down power lines.  They promptly came out after the storm and we had power in about an hour!  Bless those men! They do good work!  The cows were a little crabby about being milked about an hour later than usual, but we got through it.  Thanks to Brown County REA! You do great work!  Hopefully I will be able to report less stormy news tomorrow!  God bless!!


  1. Wow, I am so glad you are relatively all right. This has been such a year for bad storms.

  2. Yeah we were definitely blessed, hope we continue to be blessed tonight, then we look good for the next ten days.

  3. It's true that, after a storm, there's a rainbow! It's a good thing nobody got hurt, and after everything, your farm still survived. You sure made a strong crop of corn! You know how animals behave when a storm is coming right, but you still have to milk them. Those cows are looking healthy too. :-) Be safe now! In any case, I think Orange Patch Dairy fits as the name of the farm because of how sunny everything is.

    1. Thanks! It's a pretty place to live, no doubt about that!


I write this blog to share my passion for my cows and farming, please be respectful of that. I reserve the right to delete those comments which portray hate, call names, and are out right disrespectful. If you have an honest question, I will respond, to explain what we do on our farm, why we do it and how we do it. Please read with an open mind. My time to blog is short, as most of our days are spent caring for our beloved cows. Thank you!