Details about this years fleeces.
Our winter has been very mild which has made all the fleeces lighter and about 1/2" shorter. Wind is something we always have to deal with, in our area of Montana. With the dry weather and wind it has made our fleece contain more dirt and vm then last year. I base all my pricing off of the wool market, grade and over all fleece. The wool market is way down this year and with the fleeces being a little dirtier then I like the prices will reflect that. We skirt all the fleeces once at shearing, and check every fleece for soundness multiple places and times.
Below is a couple short videos showing you exactly what to expect from this years fleeces. First video is of fleece #1655 from a ewe we call "Rachel" She was born in 2016 she is a Targhee Rambouillet cross. Her fleece is about 6 lbs with a 23.4 micron.
The second video is from a ewe lamb #2010. This is her first year being shorn. She is also a Targhee Rambouillet with about a 5lb fleece and a 20.4 micron.
I took a couple of samples from different areas of Rachel's (#1655) fleece... Below I will share pictures of the process. Even though my fleeces do contain a more dirt and vm this year they still can be processed into some wonderful wool.
I started by flicking the tips open...
Then I gave it just one bath and one rinse ( I normally do at least 2-3 washes and rinse until water is clear.)
With this just being a small amount 1 wash and rinse worked just fine.
I then combed the samples. This fleece was a little to short to use my Valkyrie combs so I dug out my little ol' Louet combs...
As you can see I snapped a up close picture. The wool still has a small bit of dirt but I find that most will fall out as I spin.
I hope you find this helpful!
And as always please let me know if you have any questions.