Getting the Shots: Stalk Baling in Iowa

Or, as I unfortunately remember it, The Coldest I've Ever Been In My Life.

I knew it'd be cold. I just wasn't prepared for Iowa cold. Every morning, the weatherman would gleefully announce that the cold streak was holding. In fact, several mornings in a row, he announced that each day would be even colder than the one before it.

I was wearing seven shirts and two pairs of long johns only because I hadn't packed more.

We were raking & baling corn stalks. When everything was going well, it looked something like this:



Behind the scenes, though, we just looked COLD. 


That's me, front and center. I've got a hat, a hood, and two ear warmers. One's around my head with the hat, and one is fetchingly wrapped around my neck. Notice how puffy I look in my layers- I couldn't even raise my arms above my shoulders.

My favorite part of the shoot, though is when we tried to plug a baler for how-not-to footage.


We got a hitch-deep windrow built up in front of it and stuffed some extra down the front, just in case. And we STILL couldn't get the baler to plug. It just kept feeding till our driver was afraid he'd get a 7030 stuck if he kept going. I know, I know- I'm sure there are lots of people who've managed to plug one of our balers. I was just happy we didn't end up needing to unplug this one.

And in case you're ever wondering, it takes 4 people to roll a 5×6 stalk bale into juuuust the right position to make a photographer happy. Trust me. I know.

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