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The summer of 2016 was an exceptionally dry season for northeast Wyoming. Things had not improved much by the time the PACA Show rolled around in late September, which isn’t necessarily bad weather to gather Corriente folks and cattle. Nary a tenth of an inch of rain had fallen all summer. Ten breeders, 55 head of cattle spread across 87 class entries showed up in Gillette for the beginning of what was shaping up to be a fine weekend. After unloading, tagging & penning the cattle, the assembled Corriente crew gathered in the arena for a BBQ feast hosted by the PACA (catered again by Pokeys Smokehouse). Everyone enjoyed catching up with old friends over supper prior to the Fundraiser Auction. It’s truly a family reunion when the PACA gets all these dear friends together every fall – seriously.
Show time on Friday opened up with continued wonderful weather. Then it happened… Remember back, if you will, the Atlas Blizzard NACA show in Gillette a few years back – who was there that’s not always there? That’s right…Skip & Sharon Williams rolled into Gillette to hang out with the PACA after a trip out west! After that moment, clouds began to build over the Bighorns as judging progressed thru the morning. Luckily, we had moved inside to the performance classes before the skies figured out where Skip had went and proceeded to begin dumping what would turn out to be nearly 3” of rain on Gillette before it quit on Sunday morning. A truly miraculous amount of rain (luckily not snow this time) for the end of a hot, dry summer and just the beginning of an especially wet, drought breaking fall. A big Wyoming “THANK YOU!” goes out to Skip & Sharon for stopping in !! We kid because we love you guys. (although we do hope you keep coming to Gillette, both to join us & just in case…). Ok, interesting weather coincidences aside, the judging went swimmingly (sorry – can’t help myself).
While specific individual placements can be seen in the listings, there were several things to note. The Cains, Sunnybrook Ranch & Diamond A Cattle Co battled it out in all categories for the Grand and Reserve Champion placements. First time exhibitor Cavvietta Ranch (from Huntley,Mt) did quite well with their yearling heifers, sitting in 3rd-5th amongst a very tough field. Another 1st timer, Austin Luikens finished 6th in his first go at Two Year Old Cows. Congrats to both! For the first time at a PACA show, there was $500 prize money added to each class in addition to buckles & ribbons. Every breeder in the show took home a slice of that pie to help defray costs. Also, in a last minute adjustment, Calvin Schwartz was gracious enough to step in & judge for Bill Mundorf, who had an emergency surgery the day before the show. Calvin and the illustrious Marvin Knutson did a whale of a job (sorry again for the water reference).
Roping was another interesting confluence of talent. In the Breeders Roping, Sunnybrook Ranch (Marvin roping) with Smith Canyon Ranch (with Tom Morss) overtook Dusty Schwartz and Smith Canyon by the narrowest of margins. Saturday was the Members Round Robin Ropings. In #1, Marvin & Mark Cain edged out Amy Thrush and Tom Morss for the win. In the second, Marvin & Joey Cash bested Amy’s brother JW teamed with Calvin. Dare I say that it appears that perhaps Marvin Knutson may have been a horseback shark in the PACA pool.
Dang, I did the whole water thing again in that paragraph…bad Dave. Anyway – long story short, the PACA Show this fall in Gillette was again a fun weekend for everyone. The prime rib banquet Saturday night in the Arbuckle Lodge lobby was a fine cap to a super time. Our resident ‘Will Rogers’, Tucker Ashley graciously donated a yearling bull that was auctioned off to lucky bidder Dusty Schwartz. On Sunday morning the skies parted & everyone loaded up to head home. All of us in the PACA sincerely hope that you will come join us next fall in Gillette for yet another reunion of Corrientes & compadres!
Thank you to the author, NACA member #314 Dave Kalasinsky, of Smith Canyon Ranch in Sheridan, Wyoming. He’s a longtime Corriente breeder and prior NACA Board Member.
He’s the kinda man that will always make you smile.