I have emphysema and really have problems in the winter to chop ice with an axe in the river to provide water for my cattle. Do you know any inexpensive alternatives?

You could use a windmill to pump water up from the river to a watering station. By preventing the cattle direct access to the waterway, you can also avoid stream bank erosion and pollution problems. Since the problem involves freezing weather, any approach will need a way to keep the water flowing continually to avoid freezing. Water could be diverted from upstream and run to a watering station continually and the overflow returned to the stream on the downhill side.