We had a high of five degrees below zero Fahrenheit today, and a forecast low down to -14 F tonight. This is why you don't see many ranchers in this area calving in February. We are an exception, but only because we have the facilities to get away with it.
Thanks to our roping habit, we have an indoor arena. When calving starts the roping stops, and the arena gets bedded down with straw. Being able to put all of the cows due to calve inside at night is a huge advantage. Even then, the bitter cold will freeze ears on brand new, wet calves, so Greg has put some horse leg wraps to good use and developed his own line of bovine designer ear muffs.
Because everything is all snug inside the building, we usually check the cows at around ten-thirty pm, then not again until five am. On these really cold nights, though, I take advantage of my annoying tendency to be awake at 2 am. Sweatshirt, Muck boots and Carhartt coveralls over my pajamas and I'm good to go.