We decided a little while ago that we had a few too many steers hanging out in the corral, eating and getting large. More than we could butcher or give away for others to butcher, anyway. This is likely due to our string of 11 bull calves in a row a couple years ago. Therefore, we decided that some would go to the stockyards in town, and we’d just see what we got for them, since cow prices are quite good now, and Holstein steers generally bring cow price. So, since it was vaccinating day, we sorted them out and we loaded four of them into the trailer and headed off to town. Now, we had just gotten the farm truck fixed. The front axle had needed work. I did have a moment of thing maybe we should use my truck, since it is a 3/4 ton and therefore a little heavier and those steers were pretty large. But when I went to help load, the grey truck was already hooked up and backed up to the chute, so I left it. We were nearly to town, when there was this loud bang, and I assumed we had hit a pothole and blown a tire, which just suits the kind of week last week was. We swerved into the guardrail, and bent that with the trailer (bending the trailer axle as well we discovered later since, you know, we were driving highway speed), and luckily did not go down to the bottom of the coulee to the lake of runoff water that lurked below. Getting out, the problem was much worse. The back axle was broken. There is no cell service down in that coulee, which is weird, but whatever, so I went to the top and phoned a neighbour, while Dad went the other way to find the wheel that had come off. It was in a field, a ways away from the road.
Of course, the truck had stopped on the upside of the hill out of the coulee, which was going to make hooking it onto the other truck difficult, and the trailer almost did roll down the hill. With the calves still in it. We had to use jack-alls to lift the hitch to unhook the truck and hook onto our neighbour’s truck. As luck would have it, we had nothing to put behind the trailer wheels to keep it from rolling backwards and it kind of moved a bit every time we jacked it up. But it didn’t roll away, and we got them to town. The truck was towed back to the shop that it had just left a couple weeks ago. If we had been in the next coulee, we would have gone over, since there is not a guard rail there. So I suppose it is good it happened where it did, although I would prefer to not experience that again. I had my camera along, but was more concerned about the calves than taking pictures there. But here is where the trailer hit the guard rail. I never actually thought just those cables could keep you on the road, but apparently they do.