A Travellerspoint blog

July 2013

Deep Dime (Cattle Farm)

sunny 17 °C

Deep Dime, nr Nanango (16th June - 28th June)

After an overnight train from Sydney to Brisbane and 3 hour bus to Nanango we were picked up by our host Rachael and taken to her farm. She gave us a guided tour of the farm with us both sitting on the back of a quadbike and we saw the 400acres of land, 200 cattle, 4 dogs and 1 horse. Despite both being tired from the journey we spent the rest of the afternoon shifting a couple of hundred hay bales.

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The first full day was very exciting. In the morning we got to learn how to ride the quadbikes and then attempted to muster a herd of cattle into a paddock so they could choose a beast to kill for meat. In reality Rachael did most of the mustering and we just followed her on the bikes. In the afternoon, the butcher came to kill the animal. It was fascinating to see him cut the animal up and later in the week we spent a whole morning bagging and chopping the meat into the different cuts which we then got to eat in our second week!

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Our main project for the first week was to put walls on a large hay shed to protect the hay from the elements. It sounds relatively simple but took us best part of a week to drill holes through the supports, bolt timber beams to the support and then put on a tin / corrugated iron cladding.

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I was shown how to use the tractor which meant I got to put large hay bales out for the cattle east - was very nervous driving a $150,000 piece of equipment even though it was very simple! Towards the end of the week, I mowed a field planted with oats which was satisfying but not as easy as it looks to get the cutting lines straight - and going round corners was a nightmare as I always seemed to get it slightly wrong and miss a patch!

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While we were there I was also able to add power tool skills to my repertoire as they threw me in the deep end with powerdrills, angle grinders and chainsaws to help with various jobs!

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The adjacent farm was the dad's dairy farm so we got to go over to see how that worked one afternoon. Having never seen how they milked cows it was fascinating to see the cows voluntarily come in as a group and enter the milking dock one by one to be milked, and then exit again when they are done. It was a different story with the calves who required lots of manual intervention. We are both glad we didn't end up on a dairy farm as the 4am starts and acting as surrogate mother to calves did not appeal to us!

On our day off, Rachael took us for a drive round the local area and we had lunch at a nice restaurant with a view overlooking the valley. In the afternoon we had a bottle of wine in a local winery with cheese and biccies - great way to spend a day off!

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Posted by duncan-alice 18:10 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

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