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Southern California CMK Heritage News

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Archives: Internet Edition ~ Aftermath of Firestorm 2003
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Winter Rains and Mudslides Plague
Areas Hit by Firestorm 2003

Red Bullet   Update from Melissa Paul, Curator, W.K. Kellogg Arabian Horse Library. Tuesday, December 30, 2003.

We asked Melissa: "How are you doing with the flooding? They keep showing the mudslides of Claremont on TV." Here is Melissa's reply ~

I'm digging out. Again. Only one of my horses' shelters flooded badly. It turned to a nasty green with hay (I give those mares extra alfalfa all the time since they're so old), shavings, mud, black ash (the deepest stuff I didn't get scraped out after the fire) slush. I had to strip that one and rebed it. That's Precious Karab's and Pavlovaa's shelter.

There was a mudslide behind Auromas' shelter, but it didn't break the shelter down, and only came inside a little. From that mudslide, and previous ones over the years (his shelter is right next to the hillside), the mud/dirt level is about halfway up the six-foot wall (made of pipe corral backed with corrugated metal). It's really strong and didn't collapse in at all. Now I'm worried with this storm that the big oak tree (which hangs over his shelter roof) on the hillside may tip over if the hill slides more. The latest weather report indicates we MIGHT miss getting hit with the brunt of the storm. Think good thoughts! BTW, it was this tree that I was sure would burn and crash on his shelter during the fire and kill Auromas, but by some miracle, it was the only tree on the hill that did not burn. He had a guardian angel for sure that night!

I tarped the hay this morning (this is a big new load that came on Saturday, and that I don't want to risk losing!). Since I don't have a barn to store the hay, I put it under one of the 12' x 24' shelters and up on pallets. One 24' side has been removed to allow hay deliveries. The other three sides have corrugated metal up to 5'. That HUGE storm on Christmas got the small amount of hay I had then wet even though it had a roof and was stored well under it. Previous rain hadn't touched the hay there, but in this one, there were such strong winds, the rain went SIDEWAYS.

The road was *recently* re-graded, but forget that. The rainstorm played havoc with it ~ there were big rocks all over the place. I was raking away the day after Christmas.

Then there was the stream. I'd just finished planting some new trees (three eucalyptus and two crabapples for the little birdies so they'd have something to eat) and bushes (old garden roses that get hips, also for the birdies to munch on ~ but the darn rabbits (didn't think there were any left, but there are!) have been doing some nibbling next to the stream the week before Christmas. The flooding caused all the debris to dam up the stream. Thus no water for the new plants once the ground dried after the rain. So, I had to clear it out over the weekend. Got kind of sore.

The dressing room of my old horse trailer is leaking like a sieve. (Hey, maybe I ought to tarp it too!) Luckily, however, the new halters which are on the clothes hanger somehow managed not to get wet. The grain and some of the equipment are packed in the new plastic garbage cans (with lids!) I bought after the fire (I knew that roof leaked and prepared for it). Things underneath the manger, in the saddlerack nook, stayed dry since the overhang provides an extra roof. I put some of the new buckets out to catch the biggest drips, and one of them was half full the day after Christmas. The trailer isn't the best place to store things, and is pretty cramped, leaky, etc., but it is the only area I have that locks. I was thinking of getting a lockable storage shed but hadn't made a decision when the rain came. The plastic ones come with easily assembled floors (or look it at least*g*), but they are fairly expensive for even tiny ones. The metal ones, which I prefer (in case there is ever another fire, STEEL sounds mighty appealing) require foundations, and I don't think I can do that. I'd need to find someone to do the work. And that that would make the cost spike upwards. So, I haven't made up my mind what to do. Plus to tell you the truth I'm pretty pooped (you have no idea all the things I've been doing!). 

Ah well, ask a simple question and you get War and Peace!

Melissa
Tessie@sonic.net
(12/31/03)

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See also Firestorm 2003 for more information and articles.

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ARIEANA ARABIANS
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Phone: 949-248-1260
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Good Luck Horseshoe
HAPPY TRAILS!

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Copyright 2003-2007. Website designed and maintained by Suzi Morris. All rights reserved. This page created for SoCal CMK Heritage News Winter 2003-2004 and last reviewed for modifications and updates: April 20, 2007.