Like houstoncutter I am not in the cattle business either, though would hope to be back in it again if it's still in the stars for me. We have 320 acres of land that is rented out to a neighbor who runs a dairy operation and who uses the land mainly to plant corn, wheat and canola on and run a few cattle in the pens in the summer to keep the grass down.
Before we had to go rent (before dad passed on), we had a mixed farm running stocker steers and crops. We'd get around 80 to 90 head of steer calves (around 500 to 600 lbs) of mixed breeds (Angus, Red Angus, Charolais, Simmental, Shorthorn, Hereford, Limousin, etc.) in late fall to early winter (purchased via private treaty) and feed them in the corrals for the winter months on chopped barley and timothy-alfalfa-brome mix hay. We went from feeding chopped barley to barley silage in the winter which seemed to help increase weights and make the calves grow a bit more over winter than with a grain-hay ration. We still fed hay along with the silage though. Then come May we'd kick them out to pasture (around 120 acres in total) and have them graze in a rotational-continuous system from May to September, rarely to October or November. Usually around September to October would be to time to sell them, since most of them would be reaching around 900 to 1000 lbs by then. They'd go to a local feedlot where they spend the last few months of their lives getting fattened up before being shipped south to be slaughtered at the Cargill/XL foods slaughter plants around Calgary.
Meanwhile we'd be using the fields not used for hay and silage production as crops. Dad had access to another 160 acres (not exactly rented, since it was his DB's land) to use for barley and canola, both being raised as cash crops. We'd have around 80 to 100 acres of hay land, 40 for silage and the rest for cash crops. Since corn will never be king where we live, barley is the best crop to produce and sell up here, and just as good for cattle as corn. Canola was grown and sold on contract, and barley grown and sold to the local feedlot were we send our backgrounded steers.
I could post about my plans for this farm on here as well, but since this is mainly about past and current operations I'll have to refrain from that for the time being.