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Posts Tagged ‘New Hampshire Vermont farmers’

We had the most delicious meal last night.  Sauteed broccoli raab, beet greens, and green garlic from Killdeer, polenta, and spicy grass fed beef sausages.  After our morning with the Jersey cows at Thistle Hill in North Pomfret, Vermont, yesterday, we drove up and down the winding roads and along River Road in search of more cows—this time the black Angus steers of Cloudland Farm.

cloudland steers
“Cloudland” is an appropriate name for the farm at the top of the mountain road of the same name.  There are some long tunnels of trees along this climb that then break open into gorgeous vistas.  Before the twentieth century, the whole hill was most likely a cloudland—open pastures that seemed to touch the sky, for sheep and cattle and countless stone walls.  New growth forest has filled in some of this land, but Cloudland Farm still maintains a thousand acres of pastureland for its herd of grass fed steers.  (They’ve farmed this land for one hundred years.)  Like the population of grazing animals, that of farming families has thinned over the decades, too.  This empty hilltop school is evidence of a once-thriving community:

cloudland school
(The bigger Pomfret school down in the valley is underenrolled, now.  Old farmhouses are being bought up by wealthy non-farmers whose kids have already grown up and stayed in the cities.)

While I shopped around in their farm store, Jack and his cousin stood in the driveway admiring all of the vehicular activity. There was a big John Deere tractor, a skid steer, two ATVs, and a kid-sized pedal tractor.  The boys were happy.

cloudland sign
So was I.  I bought a whole variety of frozen beef, and started thinking about dinner.  Outside, the sun was streaming down at intervals between the big cumulonimbus clouds that have covered this region for over a month, drenching it again and again.  Bill Emmons, the Cloudland farmer, was talking about how little haying he’s been able to do, because of the constant rain.  He was enjoying the chit-chat, but was also twitching to get away and grab this sunny moment to hay.  “I hope I remember how,” he joked.

Visit their website here.

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