Published on Saturday, July 1, 2017
Ryan Kanode still remembers the first time he got to drive the combine as a kid. It was during wheat harvest on his uncles’ farm where he worked in the summer. Now he’s in his sixth season farming and running a chemical business with his uncles in northeast Colorado. “I'd say since I was little, it's kind of what I always wanted to do.” He smiles.
A lot has changed since then, but one thing is for sure. Ryan still likes running the equipment, especially during wheat harvest. “Nobody else likes wheat harvest, but I think it's the best.” Ryan laughs. “You know, the memories from growing up. I would always ride in the combine with my dad and ride in the trucks.”
Now, sometimes Ryan gets to bring his own 10-year-old son along. Lately he’s been interested in learning to drive a tractor and curious about wheat. “I hope he learns to not be afraid of hard work. I hope he sees that hard work pays off, too.” Ryan says, driving through the field.
“It makes me proud. I hope I do get to continue that family history. As the older generation steps down, being brought back into this, it's exciting for me.” Ryan adds. “I hope my uncle’s kids want to come back one day. Even my son, I hope he gets to come back some day if he wants.”
Although markets are down, and working with family can have it’s frustrations, Ryan tries to be optimistic about the future. “I think you have to be optimistic or else you wouldn't still be doing it.” He says.
“Farming is rewarding. The opportunities that I've been given coming back here, I think outweigh anything bad that has happened. The positive outweighs all the frustrations and everything else.” Ryan smiles.
Ryan knows, in the most challenging times it’s important to find a healthy way to relax. “You have to find something that you can go out and do that gets rid of those frustrations. That's part of the photography stuff that I do.” Ryan says. “I could have a bad day and go out and take pictures of the wheat or the corn. That just kind of releases it all. It refreshes you and I'm ready to go with the next day then.”
The photography work Ryan has done is now well known in the ag community on social media. He says it’s also his way of sharing his story. “I think everybody needs to show what they do.” He explains.
When it comes down to it, it’s the variety and freedom to problem solve on his own that motivates Ryan the most. "Every day is new. Every day is different. There's no 9 to 5. It may be 7 to 6, or it may be 5 to 10, you never know. I enjoy the challenges and having to think."
That’s why Ryan Kanode farms.
Author: Natalina Sents
Categories: Why I Farm, Why I Farm Roadtrip
Tags: Beck's Blog, Why I Farm, Beck's Hybrids, Why I Farm Roadtrip, Colorado Farmer, Ryan Kanode, Nataline Sents