Nobody keeps record temperatures in Lemon Cove, but yesterday’s 101° in Fresno broke the high set in 1927. It was 104° on Dry Creek as we hauled gooseneck loads of weaned calves, gathered the 101° day before, off the Paregein Ranch—three two-hour, four-wheel drive round trips off the mountain. In addition to the calves, we hauled 20% of the cows down to go to town as we prepare for summer with little feed. With less than 8” of rain, our rainy season is over until October, capping a second year of drought. With no snowpack or surface water runoff in California, hay prices are already escalating.

The first few days of 100° heat are hard on people and livestock physically, but we all get out a little earlier in the morning and finish what we didn’t get done in the evening. The most noticeable impact of the heat is to our temperaments, not near as pretty as this white geranium, happy as long as it gets water.


4 responses to “Heat

  1. The heat really sounds rough.


    • Hard to say what’s normal or not anymore, we just have to adapt. We’ll acclimate eventually, but summer’s seldom pretty in the Valley, especially when everyone gets a little grouchy. Thanks for your comment.


  2. It was cooler here. We reached 97 but stayed below 100, which is always the point where I miss my native Normandy. Today is better and it should cool off. But you’re right about the drought. I’m careful with water but I fear wildfires. They were active this winter, which is unusual and worrying. Stay cool.


    • Thanks, Evelyne. 101 as I write, but breezy as we approach a major cool down this weekend. Big temperature changes like what’s predicted make the calves in the weaning pen more susceptible to pneumonia. Always something. Everything is tinder dry, stay vigilant and have a great weekend!


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