Yesterday we sent out the last truckload of hives for this year. They embarked on their trip to California several days later than anticipated due to more excitement with the weather and a small mechanical issue on the truck we hired. Hopefully those challenges don’t resurface on the way out to northern Cal. We were really worried about another twenty inches of snow forecast for the entire weekend up in the Donner Pass area, but it looks like most of that precipitation has turned into rain or moved into Saturday. At least it is cool enough now for the trucker to just stop and wait out the weather. Our first load had to be kept moving during the daytime hours because the temperatures en route were still climbing into the fifties. I hope to hear that the bees arrive safely sometime this weekend. One last round of bee trucking anxiety for this year!
This load went out on a step-deck trailer. That was useful because it’s possible to be a little short of a true full load and only go two pallets high on the high deck but still have a straight load that’s easy to strap. There were 376 on this truck when it rolled out. We did have to sweep off remnants of the load of hay that was on the trailer previously, so that permitted a weird but fun photo op for Josi! I was supposed to let her load a few pallets of bees at the end of the trailer to launch that part of her experiences, but I got too excited about finishing the loading process and forgot. Next year I suppose! Her main job on this load was being the trailer marshal watching to make sure things looked good as the bees went up on both sides of the truck. It’s hard to see if the upper pallets are lining up really well from the loader machines. It’s also not good if a hive on the top pallet comes apart and the separation is not visible from below. We are still learning more every year!