My Gramma in Oregon also owns sheep, and it's funny that you posted this. She too shears her sheep around May of every year. Since her sheep are more like pets than livestock, she just throws the fleece away, since it's too bulky to store (she says each sheep produces a 6 x 6x 6' cube). I'm going to visit her this summer, and she said that I can have the wool as long as I can transport it. I was thinking of spinning it there in Oregon to avoid having no room in my car on the drive back (Midwest Oregon to SoCal...about 1,000 miles), but I was also wondering what the entire processing procedure is like.
Now reading what everyone has posted, I might e-mail her and ask her if she's willing to let me find a buyer for the fleece, so that way we can get yarn when we go up (after I started knitting, I found out that my dear Grandmother was an avid and extremely talented knitter. She was raised on a farm, so I don't know what I expected lol)....we're planning on making some grandmother-granddaughter items while we're together, and she's going to teach me some new techniques.
Thanks for posting this! You got some of my questions answered as well!