Still Digging Out

January 4 2007, 11:23 AM

Though some side roads around town are still a bit bumpy, most of us have managed to dig out of the leftover snow drifts from the December storms. Unfortunately, that's still not the case for some of our rural neighbors. Cattle ranchers on the eastern plains are expecting huge losses as they continue to try to locate and feed stranded animals. Just yesterday, I went to check on my horse, Granite, out at his boarding stable located between Elizabeth and Kiowa. I couldn't get to him. He's stuck in his pen, surrounded by massive piles of heavy 10-foot drifts. On the bright side, he is at a full-care facility where the management has trekked over the drifts on one corner to provide food and water to Granite and his roommate, a sweet chestnut mare named Tulu. They both have access to their dry shelter and even have a small patch of dry ground in the middle of their pen. But it's a small facility with a small staff, so it will take several more days of shoveling and hauling (they've rented a Bobcat for the heavy loads) to get provide my guy and all the other horses with clear paths and access to their gates, many of which are still buried under the snow. I'll be heading back out today to help if I can (the seven-month belly bump does get in the way of snow removal, I'll admit). It's a good reminder that even though we've moved on from the effects of the blizzard, many of our neighbors in the countryside are still struggling with the aftermath.