Guess where I was this morning?
Inside the combine harvester! Now, that may not be such a thrill for country folks, but for someone like me who grew up in deepest, darkest Scarborough (suburban Toronto, aka Scarberia), this was something very exciting!
I discovered that the combine has right hand drive. Perfect for you Brits!
There's a fire extinguisher on board.
And floor-to-ceiling windshield!
The wheat is separated from the chaff as it goes up to the hopper. I had a good view through the rear window...
Blades up as we turn the corner!
Time to shoot the wheat into the trailer. When full, the combine holds six tons of wheat. Six tons! All separated and ready to go. And because it has been so dry here, the moisture levels, which are automatically measured as the wheat goes through the combine, were a perfect 12.5% or thereabouts. The wheat won't need to be air-dried in a silo.
Here's a pic I swiped from the internet of a team of horses pulling a wheat reaper sometime around 1900.
After that, of course, it had to go through a thresher! And no air conditioning on that machine, unlike on this one...
A/C and stereo in the cab, smart phone in the driver's hand, and a fully computerized on-board system, not to mention hydrostatic gears! This combine cost slightly less than our entire farm (86 acres plus house, barn, granary, and garage!)
Andrew, the farmer who kindly let me into his cab, has been driving these things since he was 12. He patiently answered all my questions and I really enjoyed my time in the combine.
Off to harvest another field of wheat.
Here are more facts about wheat farming if you're interested!