National Western Stock Show, one of my favorite events and it's
even in Denver. I was on a 4-H county wool judging team when I
was 13 during the Stock Show and each year from our high school FFA annual
trips to covering the action now, it just makes me smile to be
there. I take pictures of the cowboys riding the Long Horn
steers in the Stock Yards, check out the excitement at the Jr.
Livestock sale and watch the horse shows, miniature Hereford
shows and of course see what's new with horse trailers, diesels
and tractors. One of the new loaders I first spotted at the
Stock Show, a couple of years back is the Bobcat Toolcat.
Now this is my kind of loader. An
air conditioned cab, 4x4, 4-wheel-steer, quick-attach loader and
dump bed. And it's got a receiver hitch so it's perfect for hay
ride trailers and will tow up to 4000#'s. The Bobcat Toolcat I
used is a 5600 B. The suspension is similar to a truck with leaf
springs on the back and coil springs on the front axle. The
Toolcat has a hydrostatic drive, like a combine with cruise
control, and hi/low range. So like any good loader you can
maneuver around with ease and run the loader with it's joy stick
Visibility is great even in the
enclosed cab with ac and heat. I just needed a CD so I could
listen to some rap music while I work. The cab is roomy with
lots of glass and two seats so you can keep your co-pilot
passenger along to help navigate. (When my wife's not riding
with me I tend to miss my exit more than once.) The rear dump
bed is hydraulic with stack pockets to add side boards so you
can haul more manure or hay or salt blocks or grandkids or... up
to 2000#'s. The All-Wheel-Steer feature of the Toolcat makes
turning corners and running the loader in small spaces easy. I
like this better for driving with the loader all the way up,
than an articulating loader bending in the middle.
I took my new toy out to
the George Eidsness horse ranch, for you guessed it, cleaning
corrals. We also burned a few donuts in George's inside roping
arena as we scooped up some sand to make a softer stall for a
pregnant mare. Andrew Lyons of Transwest Truck and Trailer and his son piloted the Toolcat so
I could do my job with the camera. My other job was to open
gates to stalls for Andrew and give George's horses a chance to
escape. You never know how fast you can run in Cowboy boots
until you leave a few gates open.
Of course a cutting edge
4-wheel-steer machine like the Toolcat needs to be towed by a
cutting edge 4-wheel-steer truck like the Denali Quadrasteer.
I'm spoiled with driving both machines that turn on a dime. The
Toolcat weighing in just under 5000#'s, add a 1000 for the
trailer and the Toolcat was a good test for the first year 2002
GMC Denali Quadrasteer.
Seeing how we were playing with the
Toolcat at the George Eidsness horse ranch, I wanted George to
drive the Quadrasteer Denali towing the 4-Wheel-Steer Toolcat.
George is a towing veteran, and liked the towing combination, telling me the
4-Wheel-Steer truck handled the bumper pull loaded trailer like
a gooseneck, eliminating most of the trailer sway. "Until you
tow with a Quadrasteer, you won't see the great benefit."
George was pleasantly surprised at the Quadrasteer difference.
World famous quick-attach Bobcat
attachments. Bobcat has more attachments for it's loaders than I
have time to review. But whatever you might need, the Toolcat
has a loader tool that can make it easier. The Toolcat's loader
will reach 7ft. Enough to load your round bales and scoop snow.
So when you're at the Stock Show this year and you see a Toolcat
running around, take a look at it.
You might want to rent a Toolcat,
try it out. It's a good way to get the chores done fast. Or buy
one for your teenager, it does go 18 mph. Just tell them it's a
cool truck for helping them clean corrals. The well loaded
Toolcat 5600 I used, cost close to $37,000, but it is a diesel
and made to last decades like your farm tractor.
and lots of lights, even a couple on the back of the
anywhere inside or out
4-Wheel-Steers ready for action
Eidsness horse ranch, inside roping arena, hay fields
and pipe corrals. As nice as it gets equines.
see what you're scooping
down and full of hay
Now if I
could just get the loader on the Denali
Thanks to the Golden Bobcat of
the Rockies for the use of the Toolcat and George Eidsness and
of Commerce City Colorado for letting us clean corrals and take