'Slab Pile' John Deere D Tractor


| January/February 1985



Tractor

Friday the. 13th of July, 1984 dawned beautifully. Morning news forecast a few days of excellent mountain weather. 'Wonder if ol' Bud remembers our 2-year old visit to his huntin' grounds? Well, I'll call him! Hey, Bud, remember that old John Deere out in the slab piles? Any chance have time to help me get it out of there tomorrow? You do? Good! Let me call another ol' pal who is interested, and let's give 'er a try!'

This story has other characters who must be introduced. Galen Thomas, a good friend, is 71 years of age and farmed sections of wheat in his younger days on the plains of Kansas. John Deere 'D' tractors are familiar to him so Galen indicated a keen interest in this particular slab pole 'D' when I told him of it. He asked to go along next time we went in to its location. I told him 'next time' would be to bring it out! Imagine his enthusiasm when I called him, even on Friday the 13th, with plans for the rescue of the relic the next day!

Marilyn, Bud's wife, is the sort of lady who is embarrassed if you show up at her house and she doesn't have treats to pass around. Galen and I arrived at the Anderson home a few minutes after 9 o'clock the morning of July 14th. Marilyn tore out of the house on some 'errand', only to return in ten minutes with a box of fresh donuts! By the time Bud found his heavy socks and rounded up his hiking boots Marilyn's fresh pot of coffee was ready and her two guests had significantly damaged that box of donuts! A couple of fish stories and baseball yarns later (Marilyn says Bud still plays ball with the 'old-timers') we were on our way to Mr. Rancher Roadcloser's gate number 1.

Gotta brag up m' jeep a little: It's the only vehicle in my stable capable of a tractor rescue attempt, considering the steep terrain and narrow clearances between the trees. It ought to stand a chance at pulling the old tractor up the hill out of its slab pile site with a 407 cubic inch V-8 and chained up on all 4 wheels, don't you think? A 16-foot flatbed trailer ought to follow along behind that kind of V-8 'O-o-mmph' nicely too.

Why does a trailer tow absolutely noiselessly down the highway then make a racket like a rock-crusher when you would like to slip into the National Forest, preferably unnoticed? I didn't know those loading ramps clatter that much! Little attention is paid to us three dudes driving by the ranch houses though. Figure we are on a firewood cutting trip, I 'spose. A few friendly waves, the last one at gate number 7 from a dude ranch guest. Now, on past gate number 8 and we're in the forest!

'Hey, guys, better leave the trailer here, don't you think? The road is only jeep width and there may be more muddy bogs like those two we just slugged through. Better leave it in this little clearing. What do ya think... we 'bout 2 miles from the tractor, Bud? Guess the winter wasn't too bad up here. Only one tree down across the trail, and we don't even need the chainsaw for it. Glad we brought it, but don't want to crank up that confounded noise-maker! There is one a-buzzin' in here somewhere though. Must be a firewood cutter. Galen, you're sure quiet today!'