Lets talk bores. Grab yourself a take away coffee, strap yourself in and Danno will take you on a tour of his beloved bore run. Well part of it anyway. It takes a while to get around them all so they need to do it in sections.
Meet Danno… our Head Bore Runner/Water Technician/Manager of Bores/Jack of all trades and Station Security….
Bore Runner is one of the most important jobs on the station, without water the cattle will perish and so will our livelihood. Simple.
You guys are going to get along like a house on fire, I mean look at that smile. He is always happy and just an all round top bloke. Here he is in his office…
He is no fool. This is where he spends most of his time so he has totally decked it out to make life easier. He even has a whiteboard – see there, on the windscreen, this is where he writes his important notes/reminders – it is basically a boardroom.
He has installed a little fridge to keep his water cold… smart man! It gets very hot out on the run. Who wouldn’t want a nice cold drink waiting for them?! There was a complimentary bottle of water included on my bore run tour. Talk about riding in style.
See this spanner… he told me it is the most important spanner on the place…
Without this spanner he can’t do his job. And see that big round thing it is on, that is a massive magnet. So he just gets back in his car and throws the spanner on that which means he always knows where it is, it isn’t rattling around on the floor of the ute. He is an ideas man isn’t he! Apparently everyone knows not to take this spanner. I wouldn’t mess with Danno – being Station Security and all.
The back of his ute is even better. He has built a crate thingy to hold all of his oil bottles, detergent for washing his hands, shovel and trough brush so it is all up off the tray and over the big diesel tank.
So this is how the average day goes down out on a bore run. Up and at it early for breakfast. Pack a lunch,perhaps a couple of pieces of cake and a bit of fruit. Fill your water bottles. First things first: he has to fill up the fuel tank on the back of his ute (of course he also needs to fuel up his ute). This tank is 400 litres and has an electric pump.
Right we are good to go.
The first thing he does upon arriving at the bore is fuel up the drum… he has a special little holder that holds the fuel pump/handle in place so he can get on with checking the oil while it fills up.
The motor is serviced every 100 hours so if it is due he also has to change the oil.
The amount of fuel he puts into the tank depends on how long he wants the water to pump into the Turkey’s Nest. You can find out what a Turkey’s Nest is in the blog post I wrote, dedicated to them, HERE.
At one stage I was chatting away asking Danno questions and wondering why he wasn’t answering me. Then after a while he said “Sorry I was counting”… apparently if he counts to 60 he knows about 20 litres of fuel has gone into the the drum. 20 litres of fuel will last about 24 hours. If the nest isn’t down very much it might only need 20 or 40 litres of fuel.
You don’t want the nest to overflow as it may blow the side out. All the nests have an outlet pipe but if that fails the nest will overflow and possibly blow out. This is why you want the motor to shut off (run out of diesel) after a certain amount of time.
Now it is time to start the motor. To do this you need to use a crank handle that is hopefully hanging on some wire and crank start it. You then need to take a stroll up the the nest to make sure the water is actually pumping.
Yep, all good, see it coming out that of the pipe there? Nice view from up on the nest too. So peaceful out there on the run. One thing you need to keep an eye out for is snakes in amongst all the long grass around the nest.
Remember how I told you Danno is a smart guy? Well here is reason #3 – he has a huge bottle of hand detergent on his ute and a special little water unit attached so he can wash his hands after each bore. There would be nothing worse than getting back in the ute with grease and oil all over your hands.
Then you need to check all of the troughs surrounding the turkeys nest. Sometimes one nest can pump into 4 troughs depending on the paddock situation. If the trough is dirty then he will give it a scrub.
Then it is onto the next bore to do the same thing over again. The station is 1.7 million acres so it is spit up into about 4 bore runs. On an average bore running day he will do about 350 km’s and open & shut about 48 gates (on a big day). Danno decided to take me on the bore run with
272 a lot of gates when we went out, bet he loved having a break from the gates.
We have about 55 bores on the place and about 65 nests – some bores pump out to a couple of nests, hence the reason why there are more nests than bores.
I reckon this is what Danno must feel like at the end of the day when he has opened a million gates…
This year Danno has a new young bloke working under him. They both do the bore run, Danno oversees that it is all going smoothly. He is also Jack of All Trades, he will go out and pull the bore if it isn’t working (I guess that is a whole other blog post), he services the station generators and also fixes anything else that is broken down. He is our go to man!
It was fun to get out and about and go on a little Bore Running excursion with Danno. Just call me the roving reporter. I will be taking questions now so fire away. Because you know I am quite the bore expert now and all. And I am sure Danno would love it if you all said Hi.
Hit me. Would you like to know anything?