Friday, January 20, 2012


We are recovering from a massive snow & ice storm.  Our power just came back on and of course I had to immediately fix my blog.

Like an idiot I forgot to renew my domain name.  It is all fixed now. 

Now to start cleaning up after the storm. 

To give you an idea

Our willow in the back yard as the snow started.

Our willow this morning after two days of ice build up from freezing rain on top of the existing snow. 

Most of the trees in our yard suffered the same fate.  Many had one to two inches of ice built up on the branches.  They can only support that weight for so long then they snap. 

The ice is devastating.

We have been unable to get out of our town and travel to the pasture we keep the sheep.  The land owner has been refilling their water and keeping an eye on things. for us & updating me daily.  Finally this afternoon we were able to get there. 

The pasture where we keep or sheep is divided into two major parts.  The night pasture where they are fed and sleep, then the lower 10 acre section where they graze.  They have free access to both and are able to move freely back and forth.  The night pasture has a four stall timber shelter that they have constant access to.  We built a shelter out of hog panels, arched over, covered with heavy tarps along the fenceline for hay storage. 

The sheep have been dodging branches as they have fallen from the old growth firs due to the ice build up the past three days (on top of the 12-14 inches of snow already on the ground).  They chose to stay directly next to the trunks in the night pasture and remained relatively safe, albeit wet and cold.  There is evidence of blood in the snow, when it is safer to get into the pasture (dodging branches and ice still falling) I will be able to look them over better.  I do not know for sure if an ewe has been injured, feet are bloody from branches and ice or a ewe has been injured in some other way. Last count we were missing a ewe - unless we miscounted - I pray we did. 

When we left this afternoon I had opened up the hay storage and let them all into that shelter.  They have that hay & orchard grass and what is left of the round bale.   The next day will be bringing a significant wind storm to the Enumclaw Plateau.  Send your prayers that they stay safe.  If I could bring them home and put them in my back yard I would. 

In this picture you can see some of the sheep along the fence line away from the trees.  Most of them have taken shelter under the 'hoop' building. The ground under the trees is covered with massive branches and debris from old growth trees above. 

Another view.  The area under the trees is normally open, clean and free of any brush.  Everything you can see under there now has fallen in the past couple days. 

The shelter in the back next to the blue green vehicle is their timber framed building the sheep did not go into for some reason.

It could be worse.  Actual trees could have fallen.  The round thing you see in the middle is a round bale.  Gives some reference for the size the trunk of the tree is next to it.  

As we were leaving John snapped this picture of the Jim the Llama finally taking cover in the hoop building. When we arrived today he was shaking so badly I thought his teeth would fall out.  The sheep are all very shell shocked.

I am praying we do not lose lambs.  I thank our Heavenly Father that more of the ewes were not injured.  I cannot imagine what it has been like for them the past days, it brings tears to my eyes.  I feel badly complaining about no electricity when they were dodging huge chunks of ice and timber as it fell from the sky. 

We are so blessed to live in the comfortable modern world we have surrounding us.  Very blessed indeed. 


Karen said...

Fortunately we have dodged the ice storm bullet. It was predicted for today, but the temperature had come up enough before the rain really started, so we didn't get the ice. We've been through it before though, when alder branches from trees in front of the house were sounding like gunshots as they snapped off.
I hope when you have chance to get a better look, the missing ewe has reappeared, and any injuries are only minor. The weather WILL get better.

Laura Carson said...

My goodness. I'm so sorry. :( This reminds me of an ice storm we had back in 03 or 02 - we lost power for six and a half days. It was awful. You are all in my thoughts and prayers.