Your Christmas Stories: The Cow Caper – Kamloops This Week

Now, most times when ol’ Ed looks for cows, it’s from the back of a horse.

There were years when the drifting snow was so deep, Ed’s stirrups would be dragging as he broke trail to give those strays a path home. It’s the only way of getting cows home — sometimes.

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The winter of 1968 was a bad one. The snow was near five feet deep and the temperature hovered around -15 C.

Ed and his boss flew the Knutsford area and spotted three strays holed up. They knew there was no way they would risk a good cow horse to break trail.

They got out the snowmobile and a four-by-eight piece of plywood.

With the snowmobile and a homemade sleigh loaded on the one-tonne, they drove as far as they could.

When they spotted the strays, Ed roped the first one, threw her on her side and tied her legs together faster than a rodeo star.

They dragged the cow onto the sleigh, where Ed straddled her to keep her from sliding off. He grabbed the rope thrown to him and braced himself the same way he did in those long-ago glory days of riding bulls.

It must have been a sight to see: a cowboy-mounted snowmobile, dragging a homemade sleigh, which was carrying a cow trussed up tighter than a Christmas turkey, with another cowboy covered in snow, holding a rope and straddling the cow, which was so nervous that she kept spewing out remnants of what little she had eaten.

Those cows made it home safe that Christmas

As for Ed and his boss, they didn’t wait up for Santa that year.

If St. Nick wanted to fly through the frigid air with a bunch of reindeer, he could go right ahead.

They’d had enough of sleigh rides for one Christmas.

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