Days in the life of a farmer: Brimin in winter

Rutherglen Travel Blog

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me and Ali

I haven't exactly one a good job at keeping this blog up have I? I've been up to the farm numerous times this year but I haven't documented any of my trips since I guessed they might be of little interest to most people.

But I'll tell you a little bit more about the region and more fun stuff I got up to this weekend at Brimin Lodge: The farm is only about 15 minutes from the country town of Rutherglen, a town in Victoria that is close to the border of New South Wales. It's about a four hour drive from the city of Melbourne, and to give you an idea of how 'country' the area is, in the recent Rutherglen Winery Walkabout that is held every year on the streets of Rutherglen, Telstra (a mobile phone company) had a stall at the festival to promote their new mobiles.

on the four-wheel bike
 Their only problem was that they couldn't get phone reception!

The lack of phone reception on the farm is probably a good thing for my mum's heart rate. I think she would love to drop me a message every day that I am up at the farm, to check that I haven't injured myself; and there are a number of ways one can!

This trip, I learnt how to drive the manual two-wheel motorbike (as opposed to the four-wheel motorbike, which I always drive). The two-wheeler is a heavy thing and changing gears without throwing yourself off the bike is an easy thing to do! Driving on uneven ground doesn't make things easier.

Other than dealing with the bike, I went horse riding around the property during most of Sunday. We explored some of the 380 acres as well as some of the neighbour's property. We finished by doing some arena work in the make-shift arena at Taylor's (the neighbour's).

Dobson and me

Of course it's winter now, and with the ground softer, it's a good time for ploughing. Ali and I spent the rest of Sunday afternoon ploughing paddocks. We always scare Al's dad, who runs the farm, by having one of us drive the tractor, while the other sits just above one of the wheels. You can tell my tracks because they veered every time I saw an interesting bird.

Speaking of which, there is plenty of birdlife for the avid birdwatcher. Without even trying, this weekend I came across the following birds: a thrush, Superb Fairy-wrens, a gang of Choughs, a Flame Robin, Crows, Cockies, Eastern Rosellas, ducks of some kind (I couldn't identify them), Kookaburras, Tree Creepers, an Azure Kingfisher, a Grey Butcherbird, Magpie Larks, Galahs, and Ibises. There were probably many more that I didn't notice.

shearing (not crutching)

Al crutched some sheep the following day; many of the ewes are due to lamb in a few weeks time, so what they do is shear the wool from around their bums to make it easier for the sheep to give birth and to make it easier for the lambs to suckle. Then, we drove the ewes back to the Gully Paddock, where there was plenty of feed for them to eat.

Tippy, the resident farm dog, was excellent with the sheep as usual. Yambo, the other resident farm dog, who isn't really working yet, was a tiny puppy not so long ago. At nearly six months in age, she is almost the same size as Tippy. She is as raucous as ever, though her claws and teeth are no longer needle sharp! A good thing!

I've added photos but since I didn't take any this weekend, they're just ones from last year! Hope you don't mind

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me and Ali
me and Ali
on the four-wheel bike
on the four-wheel bike
Dobson and me
Dobson and me
shearing (not crutching)
shearing (not crutching)
Tippidies
Tippidies
sheepies
sheepies
Rutherglen
photo by: Chelsea