The helpful husband and I spent the entire day loading, hauling, and stacking two hundred square bales. My hay guy said he "tweaked" his baler this year which turned out to mean heavier and tighter bales. At minimum they were about 50 pounds each. We handled each bale about three times. My sore muscles tell me that comes out to about 100 trillion pounds...I think! :)
We picked up Load #1 at 7:30AM.
Our hay guy raises sheep (Tunis, Columbia, and Suffolk) as well as miniature cattle so he produces a really lovely bale of hay. He sells lots and lots of hay and he likes to keep it moving. So they load it onto hay racks and you have to come get it when it's done...as in ASAP and right now. If you don't, and he has to store it for you in his outbuildings, he charges you more money. So, we skedaddled as soon as we got the call.
We gave a taste to the "big guys" and they gave it two thumbs up. Wasabi, the rooster, supervised the entire process.
Here we are getting towards the end of the load, thus, the happy jig.
It took eight hours but all 200 bales are stacked in the barn. To keep them dry and mold-free throughout the year we stack them on parts from an old picket fence or pallets.
My husband, by far, did a majority of the work. I did help as much as I could with the loading and stacking and providing lots and lots of water during the day. (And a cold beer when we were done.) The only tasked I balked at was handling the bale which had a LIVE snake in it. EEK!
Here's my self-portrait from the day. I'm basically passed out in the back of the pick up truck as my legs were immobile. But there is no rest for the weary--we need to get about 100 more bales to see us through the winter!