I wanted to clean it up with the harrow, but that meant the shelter had to move. Siobhan was in the pasture at the time, and she clearly enjoyed the shade, understandably so since the only grove of trees hadn't leafed out yet. So I decided to move the shelter to a less-visible corner of the pasture and transform it from a temporary stall into a permanent shade shack. There was no way Herb would have time to help me, so I decided to do it myself.
How to Make a Corral Panel Shade Shack in Eight Easy Steps . . .
. . . or lots more, if you don't think things through first! I'll give you a few hints to make sure you get your project done in eight steps instead of more.
- Make sure all the panels you want to use are straight. Rust is okay, bent is not! It's much easier to go find a straight panel first instead of single-handedly heaving a crooked one on top of your shade shack, trying it on both sides--then still having to take it off and go get another one.
- Get everything you need before you start. I ran out of rubber bungies and had to make a trip to Ace Hardware to get more.
- Have something handy to tie down the tarp on a windy day if you're working alone.
- Turn panels upside down and slide them if you're alone, or even with two people. They slide over the ground much easier than you can pick one up and carry it!
- If a panel had something wired to it like some of mine did (12' long 2 x 12s), be smart and remove it before you try to drag the panel--and especially before you try to turn one upside down to move it. A 12' long 2 x 12 falling on your fingers does not feel good!
- Collect every tool you think you might need and take it into the pasture in your Kubota RTV, if you have one. The bed makes a great place to keep tools handy. If you don't have one, get a wheelbarrow or a wagon.
I know these steps are a bit redundant, but I wanted to give you plenty of shots of the shade shack from different angles!
This is also where it saves several steps if you don't try to use a bent panel! Trust me, it won't be stable and you'll just have to get it down and go get another one. You may think you're saving yourself work by using what's already there, but you're not!
Step 8 - Use a rubber bungie at each corner and in the middle of each side to be sure the tarp is securely held down. Then use heavy duty nylon cord and tie down every remaining ring or grommet on the tarp.
We won't talk about me hobbling in to the chiropractor's office two days later, but all's well that ends well. And as you can see, the girls have given their new shade shack the Good Cattle-keeping Seal of Approval.