Shearing is not over yet. We spent the day on Wednesday with our shearers Kevin Ford and Gwen Hinman. We did 133 sheep and still have 100 to go which will be done this coming week (weather permitting).
There are a couple of 15 second videos at the end of this post if you would like to see it live.
If you have followed this blog for a while, you know that Kevin shears with blades (by hand!) and Gwen shears with electric shears. It is a very busy day and many people are involved. Two shearers, Mark catching the sheep, Rachel and I sorting the wool and packing it into giant wool bags and me also being the caterer to feed the crew.
The days before are busy too. Sorting and grouping the sheep to get them ready is a massive job. Rachel, this year's apprentice, helped Mark do this on Monday so the sheep would be out of the rain.
|Mark sharing his wisdom with Rachel, his apprentice|
|Kevin's glove with his sheep counter|
Skirting the wool
Packing the wool in the giant wool bags
Getting rid of the nasty bits (manure, vegetable matter, matted bad wool, etc.)
We also had a reporter from The Greenfield Recorder named Richie Davis who is writing a story about Kevin Ford and a photographer named Paul Franz for photos for the paper. I'll let you know when the story runs.
Shorn sheep looking on at the others
Kate watching the action from afar. She had a fantastic day. So much action and sheep to watch.
We were pooped by the end and went to bed early. We are still trying to figure out how the shearers do it day in and day out. Kevin just turned 70 and he is a marvel. Gwen is a marvel too. I love spending the day with both of them.
At least the day wasn't too hot. We changed our shearing schedule so that the sheep wouldn't have to be brought back in from pastures near and far. Next week we do it all again with a few less sheep.
Video of Kevin Ford shearing