2002 Season

Holland Harvesting – 2002 Season

The 2002 season was filled with all the normal trials and tribulations of harvest, and then some. 

We got started on a relatively normal date in Texas, and at least had something to cut there this year.  It was not real good quality or yield, and was lodged pretty bad before we got 4″ of rain with only about 3 days left.  With good luck we were able to get done before the next rain hit.

2002 Harvest Season

Holland Harvesting Inc

Northern OK. and Southern KS. had a good crop, and we got in right on time to get 7″ of rain over the next few days.  The ground was already wet to begin with, and our next stop was pushed by drought and was fit before we even got started here.  We loaded and went north to cut a short crop in central KS., then loaded and headed back south (not a good feeling) to mud out the jobs we had left there.  We got these cut and then had a long haul to NW Kansas to make our stop there that was waiting for us.  Now we were into the drought area, and they remain dry there 6 months later.  From here on we were fortunate to cut what we did as the drought continued on through NE., SD. and western ND. 

Many acres were cut and baled or zeroed out for insurance settlements.  We didn’t get back into normal wheat until northeast ND, where we also got back into mud.  This season anywhere we had bushels, we also had mud, which adds to per acre expenses greatly with increased fuel consumption, and wear and tear and hours on equipment.

Because of the winter wheat being pushed along by drought and the spring wheat developing at a more normal rate, we had a long dead spot between the two.  Of course this is the toughest time for any crew to endure, and everyone was in the same situation this year.  Our guys all hung in there well and made it through the running hard and extra miles, as well as the down time and waiting for when we would cut again.  It’s much easier to cut and cut steady.  Hopefully we won’t have a year like this again..

Meanwhile, while on wheat harvest we were getting excessive rainfall at home on the corn and beans.  After a dry spring, it got started with 13″ the end of June, followed by several 4-6″ rains right up until the beginning of soybean harvest.  We had 5-6 thousand acres we knew would be questionable to go on when we got another 4″ rain. 

At this point we decided it was time to “bite the bullet” and tracked two machines to run on our commitments near home that had received this 50+ inches of rain during the growing season.  By working together with our farmers we were able to get this crop out in good shape with minimal damage to the waterlogged fields.

Holland Harvesting Inc

2002 Harvest Season

Our other fall work in IA, N and S Dakota, and northern MN went pretty well, but even with 8 machines out for the majority of the fall, we didn’t totally finish until the last week in November.  October was terribly cold and wet, but we were so scattered out that there was generally some of our machines running somewhere. 

Somehow, we still had a pretty good year.  Everyone ran hard when we could, and learned to wait patiently when we couldn’t.  Our customers worked with us to deal with the weather delays and mud, and we tried to help other crews as they did us.  We don’t look upon any other crew as competition, just someone else out there trying to survive. 

Now we head into 2003 while still trying to forget 2002.  Presently, the western winter wheat belt on up into the spring wheat is still dry.  There is a new farm bill and poor markets for our customers to contend with, equipment is up, fuel costs are questionable as is war, and insurance will be up as much as 2-3 times the 2002 rates.  The one good outlook for next season is winter wheat acres are up, but then some of the spring wheat area is too dry to plant unless they get some moisture the next few months. 

2002 Season – Holland Harvesting Photo Album

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