Loose Stacks, Evening
On canvas board
Image size: 9” x 12” Price: $300 (shipping included)
On canvas board
Weight: 8 oz
Hay was more commonly put up as a loose stack in earlier times than now. More usual in today’s haying, it is mechanically baled into round bales and wrapped in plastic.
The loose stack haying procedure is dying out but it is a more interesting process to watch with a team of ranch workers all working together with a truck, a pulley system, and a beaver slide. With the loose hay being gathered onto the slide, attached to the beaver slide, the pulley system and truck can lift the slide up to the top where the hay falls through and after a short time, a loose stack is formed on the ground underneath the beaver slide. I have watched this and could tell that the workers had pride in their work as well as skill and speed.
In high altitudes, the wild hay keeps better in the field as a loose stack than as square or round bales. It seems that the loose stack process is going by way of history and will soon die out. In areas in Montana where one might still see haying done this way, visit the Avon and Ovando area, the Bighole Valley near Wisdom and Jackson, or in Wyoming, near Jackson Hole. In the early twentieth century, in Beaverhead County, Mt., the beaverslide was first invented using lodgepole timber, horses were used to push the hay with a buckrake towards the slide, which is elevated with the pulley system to be raised to the top of the beaverslide and fall through at the top into a loose stack which can reach a height of 30 feet.