Then a mere 10 minutes later, it sashayed forth in rosy splendor as the sun rose over the hills behind the house.
I had big plans for Monday morning. While the rest of the family hiked up behind Cathedral Rock, I headed into Ft. Davis and drove west past the old Bloys Campground. I was on my way to visit Ft. Davis' one herd of Dexter cattle belonging to Robert and Patty Martin of Davis Mountain Dexters.
website explains that they raise red Dexters, mostly polled (although some with horns) and all PHA- and chondrodysplasia-free. The Martins explained that their cows will calve in September or later. They got "off schedule" in 2011 with the effects of the tragic Rockhouse Fire (photo here), and they decided to stick with fall calving because temperatures are cooler and the fall monsoon makes the grass more lush.
The Martins raise their Dexters as range cattle and use welded steel pens for working them; you can see a photo on their website photo gallery. They make hay available to their cattle on a constant basis, and the cattle do well fed exclusively grass and hay.
After I left their place I went into Fort Davis to do some shopping. One of the shopkeepers saw my "Got Dexter?" T-shirt and mentioned the TV show "Dexter." I told her that the shirt is about Irish Dexter cattle. She got all excited and said she just recently bought some grassfed Dexter beef from the Martins, and it's the most delicious beef she's ever tasted. I thought that was a pretty good recommendation!
Legend Red Ace, who produced his first offspring for them in 2010. It's a fun coincidence that I visited Barb Netti, Ace's breeder, in June. When she mentioned that there are Dexter breeders in Ft. Davis, I never dreamed that a few months later I'd be meeting them!
Monday was nostalgic in more than one way. In 2005 Kara was getting busier with high school and looking forward to college, and she came to the decision that she needed to give up riding her horse Romeo. So we shipped Romeo out to the ranch in West Texas to stay with our family there. He lived a life of leisure on the range, learning to be a Texas horse. When they heard we were coming for a visit after such a long time, Herb's brother and sister-in-law arranged to have Romeo trailered over to Jeff's house so that Kara could see him.
Won't he be surprised when he sees all the green grass here . . . and the tiny cattle?!