Saturday, June 23, 2012

Where does all the wheat go?

One thing Sandy has been seeing a lot of... are these... grain elevators. They dot the prairies like mushrooms, although Sandy learns that they used to be much more common in the olden days. Today, they are slowly disappearing.
This one was in the heritage village, so Sandy could have a look at the inner workings. Was there really an elevator in there? Who pushed the buttons for the grains?? Well... as Sandy learned, it's quite an ingenious process. The wagon full of grain from the farmer, gets pulled into the center of the grain elevator (by horses - we're talking olden days here). Once there, the horses are unhitched and the wagon starts to tip over backwards!
How does it do that? Well... part of the floor is like a teeter-totter... the back wheels go down and the front wheels go up.
Sandy's not sure who's down there to make all of that happen... but it's a little bit scary! And then... the back of the wagon opens up and dumps its load of grain onto the floor.
Well, not quite... because there is a big grate in the floor and the wheat is supposed to go down there (not all over the floor.....
Better be careful Sandy... don't fall between those slats!! So all of the grain goes down into the bowels of the grain elevator. But why are they so tall, these grain elevators? And where's the elevator? Well... the grain comes in on wagons and it goes down into the pit... and then from there, it goes up into the top of the grain elevator and then down onto trains which carry it all over the country. But how does it get up!?? Well... behind the wall (normally hidden from view)... is a little elevator...
Wow... that looks like the perfect size for a little bear... except, it probably moves pretty fast and Sandy would get all covered in grain dust, which would make him very itchy! But at least now he knows how a grain elevator works!


  1. Interesting photos Sandy! We always wondered about the wheat, and what is very important because it goes into bread, and without bread, where does a bear put his honey in the morning for breakfast?? hehe

  2. Good point! No flour... no toast, no honey cakes, no honey loaf!

  3. No honey? Oh no, don't even joke about that Sandy! hehe