a tough year to be a wheatie

Picture credit goes to Nancy Eberts 0f Eberts Harvesting, Inc.

We’ve had a bit of crummy luck with our summer jobs this year. I wrote about it on the All Aboard Wheat Harvest site. To read it, you can click here.

In all of our 35 years of being in this business, I can honestly say I have never seen it look so bleak for so many. Typically, when things happen, it happens to a select few harvesters and then you can, hopefully, make up for the lost acres somewhere else along the way. This is not so this year. I’m afraid the 2017 wheat harvest may come to a complete stop for many in a week or so. The acres in the northern states are depleting by the day. The already low wheat acres are becoming even lower and I’m afraid there won’t be enough for everyone to be able to make up what we’re losing.

We are sitting on some acres in Garden City – thankfully! After we received word the hail had wiped out the acres we normally cut, Jim made a couple of phone calls and one of them came through for us.  It’s irrigated wheat and is doing quite well considering this is the wheat that was flat on the ground due to snow the end of April. It’s yielding more than 70 bushels per acre and the test weight is very good (60-62 lbs).  This should keep us busy for four to five more days and then we don’t know what we’re doing next. I have to believe God knows and I will remain faithful to that belief. I know He works things for our good – we just sometimes have to learn to wait! And who knows…maybe we’ll get home to welcome grandbaby #3 to the family afterall.

Garden City, Kansas

Garden City, Kansas

We had some German visitors arrive while we were still in Claude, TX. They are in the states to make a documentary on the wheat harvest. They told us there is great interest in this lifestyle in their country. They were a lot of fun to have around for a day or so. They traveled with us while we moved the combine and trailer house from Claude to Garden City. I believe they are returning tomorrow for more footage of us in the field.

Jim’s preparing the Pete for the trip north while Dirk (one of our new German friends) watches.


Volkert sitting in as the “dummy” while Michael and Dirk were setting up the cameras inside the Pete. 

Volkert and our farmer, Bryan, talking about Germany, I’m sure. 🙂

We had to make a planned stop to change things up a bit with cameras and mics. This is Texas beauty!

Another quick stop at Bryan’s Corner, Oklahoma for changes to the plan. Volkert and Michael look pretty involved in a conversation. Dirk and Jim in the background. 

The day after we arrived was the day for fellow HarvestHER visitors – me and Nancy Eberts (Eberts Harvesting). She came to the yard while Jim and I were unloading the equipment. She was in Garden City to pick up a new crew member. 

Later that same day, Amanda Buus Thomsen (BT Harvesting) and her husband, Anders, came to Garden and we went out for supper. 

Jim took this video while he was running the grain cart in Texas. He did an awesome job!!


11 comments on “a tough year to be a wheatie

  1. So glad you found the acres around Garden City! Prayers that a plan does come through for the Z Crew.

    • Nebraska Wheatie says:

      Thanks for the prayers, Laurie! That is why I just know He’s got something more planned for us. 🙂

  2. Lyndell says:

    Sorry for ur loss of acres. Retired farmer-trucker here. Been following your family on AAB since way back with Jenna. Read your beautifully worded post couple days ago. Wouldn’t began to offer advice because I’m not walking in ur shoes. Notice you mention God ocassionaly. He is aware of your situation. Maybe He’s preparing you for something different. Only HE knows. He is trustworthy. We’ll be praying for you.
    Lyndell & Judy Wood

    • Nebraska Wheatie says:

      Thank you for your kind words, Lyndell & Judy! I have thought about that – something different. I’ve also thought maybe it had to happen to us so I could be the one getting the word out for the industry…who knows. Whatever is next will be a step of faith…and a lot of patience. Thank you for the prayers – they’re appreciated so very much!

  3. Candi says:

    Miss you ! Keep meaning to call, so happy you keep us updated here. Good luck finding more work 👍🏻

  4. Judeen E Rikli says:

    Prayers from Church Road!!

  5. David Jordan says:

    So sorry to hear about your short season struggle. Praying something good opens up for you yet this year. I just completed chemo again and am quite weak. David Jordan

    • Nebraska Wheatie says:

      Thanks, Dave! I’m sure sorry to hear you’re having to deal with chemo again. Darn it!! Please check in again and let me know how you’re doing.
      Hugs to you!!

  6. mom says:

    Tracy and Jim….keep the faith…I’m praying your work here for the fall will be ok…Matt is sending you pixs of the hail that hit my house last night about 10;30 then again at midnight…I have roof damage for sure…probably siding on the north, west and south on house. I picked up the hail on the front porch and yard. the ground was covered with the huge hail stones…..It was terrible…I keep wondering whats next……call you tomorrow about my hospital visit this morning…hugs and kisses XXXXXOOOO….mom…… I will show you my ice when you come home….good night….

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