The southeastern quadrant of Colorado only receives an average of 15 inches of rainfall per year, so growers need to be creative in order to keep their crops healthy. For Dale and Garrett Mauch, that means using center pivot irrigation.
"Because we rely on canal water, our water source is limited. We can't flip a switch to irrigate, so we have to be as efficient as possible. The pivots allow us to irrigate 70 acres at a time," Garrett Mauch said. "Our neighbors flood irrigate, and they only get five acres at a time."
The father and son duo farm 3,500 acres near Lamar, Colorado – raising corn, wheat and alfalfa. The first center pivot was installed in 2000 and today there are sixteen operating on the family’s operation. To help deal with tracking problems, they installed NFTrax – an airless wheel assembly which provides improved traction, eliminates flat tires and limits downtime.
"If you have a flat tire, there's nothing much worse than changing a tire in six-foot-tall corn in the middle of the summer,” Mauch said. “The NFTrax really helps. It eliminates getting a flat tire and reduces tire tracks."
Mauch added that the NFTrax also help tackle the tough terrain on his operation.
"The biggest advantage is on the hills,” he said. “The sprinkler track will get water racing down it and that cuts the tire track deeper, but by putting sand in those tracks and using NFTrax, it really reduces the runoff and depth of the tracks so the ruts aren't so brutal on the equipment. It's been a huge cost savings."