JSBA AGM (Colorado – Day 1-3)

We crammed a lot into only a couple of days. AGM (Annual General Meeting) is always fun because you see people who you may only see once a year (or less). Because the AGM is held all over the country and at different times of year, not everyone can go to them all. There was a pretty good turnout in Colorado. Here are some photos of the activities.

Friday evening wool show.

Friday evening Spinners’ Lead contest for juniors…

…and for Seniors.

“Make sure that you see the socks too.”

Saturday morning sheep show.

Saturday afternoon presentation about The Effects of Nutrition on Fiber Production.

Also Saturday afternoon–AFD (Average Fiber Diameter) testing for anyone who brought wool samples (or took scissors and cut samples from the sheep that were there). This is Ron Cole from ASI, who taught the Wool Handling Workshop in California a few months ago. He brought the OFDA (optical-based fiber diameter analyser) used to measure wool samples and I think he ran about 200 in the few hours he was there. AFD and some of the other statistical measurements are of importance to sheep farmers because it is AFD that determines the best use and the market for wool.

A wool sample is placed between two screens and thousands of measurements are taken in a few seconds time.

This is the information you get from the scans. I usually send in wool samples for all my yearlings so that I have micron data for each sheep at a consistent age. When they are sent to the lab you get this data back in printed format.

I should have taken a photo of dinner. It was fabulous Jacob lamb prepared by students in the meats lab at Colorado State (I think I have the school right) accompanied by corn, potatoes, and Colorado peach cobbler.

After dinner there was a brief meeting and presentation of a Jacob wool shawl (made by me) to Jennifer, who organized the event.

Throughout the day there was plenty of sheep shopping and trading going on.Most people who were hauling sheep left early Sunday morning. Some of us stayed around and drove a couple of hours up in the mountains to the Lonesome Stone Fiber Mill in Granby.

What a beautiful area! Lonesome Stone currently has about 250 alpacas. We spent some time visiting with the alpacas before seeing the mill.

Note the bowl on the head method of bringing alpaca treats to the field. Once the bowl was lowered the treats were gone within seconds.

Isn’t this a cute baby?

 

 

 

Lonesome Stone is a favorite of alpaca growers, but they also process wool and any other fibers. When a producer sends raw fiber it is scoured, picked, carded, pin-drafted, spun, and plied. The yarn produced is beautiful. This is carded fiber going into the pin-drafter and coming out…

…like this, ready to be spun.

 

This is a corner of the store where the finished yarn is sold. Oh, did I say that Lonesome Stone also dyes the yarn?

After this field trip I drove 3 hours to Colorado Springs to visit with my husband’s sister and brother and their spouses, spending the night north of Colorado Springs. I left for the airport about 8:30 and got home around 4:30 p.m. It was a great weekend, but I am glad to be home. Tomorrow I’ll be on the road at 5:30 a.m. to pick up my new sheep!

 

 

 

 

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