Cylindrical Hay Bales, X Marks the Spot

For the past few months every time I go to and from Onondaga Co. I pass by a huge field of cylindrical hay bales in Cayugo Co. Today (Jan 3rd when I wrote this) I decided to actually stop on my way home and photograph part of the field – it’s much larger than it shows here:
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I remember reading somewhere how many square hay bales are in a cylindrical hay bale but I don’t remember the figures off the top of my head.
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So I typed the question “how many square bales of hay in a roll?” into and came up with “it depends” with a bunch of stuff about moisture, size etc. Argh! I heard that answer so many times from one of my profs. He would ask a question and I’d come up with the answer I thought he wanted. It would burn me when he said “well, it depends.” Even so, I still hang around with him because he is a nice person – and when he starts asking me a question you know what my answer is! Anyway, I do know there’s some number greater than one square hay bale in a cylindrical hay bale.
I was watching the sky all of the way home tonight and snapping photos – without looking at the camera to see what I was taking because people were driving idiotically (don’t get me started on mini-vans).
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I love this photo on so many levels – the wispy dark clouds, the plane trails to show *just* how close we really do come to other planes while flying without knowing it (ignorance is bliss in that case), the barn, the winter tree silouettes, the sun, and the impending gorgeous sunset – which it was. This is only part of the beauty of the sunset tonight:

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And at 3:25 PM the MONY tower in Syracuse read 51 degrees F. On January 3, 2007. Go figure. It must be because I actually paid a man to come plow my driveway for the first time ever this winter instead of doing it myself (because I listened to my friends who said it was going to be a bad winter, uh huh). You know, it’s like when you wash your vehicle and then it rains.


6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Mary
    Jan 04, 2007 @ 08:34:21

    Nice photos, Pam. I’m glad I’m not the only lady on the road driving with her camera in her hand. I once clicked away on Interstate 77 south, trying to get a nice shot of the Charlotte city skyline. I-77 is wild with traffic and is no place to be taking pictures! I must have been out of my mind.


  2. Pam
    Jan 04, 2007 @ 08:39:10

    Thanks Mary. Nope, you’re not the only one, you, me, Susan, probably countless others are snapping away. Ain’t no law against using cameras on the road! I don’t really count on getting anything worthwhile to show others, I just point and shoot. But I like the barn photo I captured last night while just trying to capture the wispy dark clouds. I didn’t know all of that other good stuff was going to show up in the photo!


  3. Lynne
    Jan 04, 2007 @ 11:28:24

    The barn photo is aewsome! You know how I love bare trees black against winter sky. I also really enjoy seeing those round bales, left to gray in the fields. I saw a great gray owl perched on one once, hunting. It was perfectly beautiful.


  4. Pam
    Jan 04, 2007 @ 14:35:01

    Thanks Lynne! I couldn’t have done it if I had tried – I missed so many shots I wanted to capture. That’s right, I remember you mentioning the great gray owl perched on a hay bale. How exciting! I was thinking it would be good bird feeding with all of the rodents that must live in those bales. I can’t get enough of the winter trees against the sky!


  5. Laura
    Jan 04, 2007 @ 22:53:56

    I love those round bales – most farmers here use the square bales, but I found a place with the round ones a few months ago and posted a pic on my blog.

    I’d like to know why a farmer chooses to use round v. square bales? I think the round are harder to dry or at least are more dangerous in terms of the possibility of mold growth that is so dangerous for any animal that eats or breathes the dust. And please don’t mention rodents in the bales! Yuck!

    I use a lot of hay here with the rabbits and have found some odd things – I would not be pleased with rodent droppings! I once took back a bale of hay because it reeked of cat pee – from the barn cats that used it as furniture. Yuck!


  6. Pam
    Jan 05, 2007 @ 08:43:23

    Laura – I remember your post and that’s why I finally had to stop. I should have dedicated this post to you because you gave me the idea to stop!
    That’s a really good question – round vs. square. The prof I mention above is also a farmer, so I’ll ask him. It might be for the storage – they use those big white flexible plastic tubes that lie horizontal in the field to store their hay. I’m not sure why this farmer is just letting his bales hang out in the field.
    Yuck to rodent droppings. The round hay bales seem so much looser than the square ones, to me anyway.


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