|Sunset over standing water, 2013.|
Hay prices have been exceptionally high this year. Last season was a bad one for haymaking, with paddocks producing half of the usual number of bales. This has coupled with the drought in the North Island to create a real shortage of supply. I was very fortunate to get some cheap, good quality hay delivered in March, but those who are unable to store large amounts of hay have been left to buy it at ever increasing cost. I am concerned that, should the region experience another bad season, buying hay will be a luxury for many.
While we have missed out on our usual rainfall, we have not been short on frosts this year. On the worst days the metal gates at work stick to my hands, and the ropes are stiff with ice.
My horse is about to come back into work in preparation for the competition season. Once again we will brave the multitude of dog owners who do not appear to know how to read Halswell Quarry signage requiring leashed dogs in the horse area. There is a horse park being developed in West Melton, which will hopefully remove the need for me to travel to Burwood in search of decent horse trails. One of my favourite paper roads is no longer easy to access following interference with stock on the adjoining farms, and this is a great pity.