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Monday, September 16, 2013

Sunshine, finally!

Somehow, this natural disaster has completely consumed us. I don't know where the days go, aside from plotting how to get to town and how to deal with the things that normally require town visits. The prognosis for our main route to town got even worse today, as a state engineer deemed it too dangerous even for emergency traffic. That engineer also rescinded all guesses about how long it would take to rebuild the road.

This morning started the same as every day in recent memory. As Shyla and I headed out on our morning ride, we were in the midst of clouds so thick that they left water all over the plants, me, and Shyla.
At the start of our ride, we couldn't see more than 10 yards away through the clouds. I was feeling sorry for people who needed to be rescued via helicopter because the choppers were all grounded. The emergency agency had put out this notice to mountain residents:

"A major air rescue for the foothills devastated by 100-year floodwaters is planned for Monday, with residents asked to use white sheets, reflective mirrors, flares and signal fires to alert helicopter pilots to their locations.

Knowing that stranded people were hoping to be rescued today, the clouds were making me sad. But, very gradually, the clouds started to burn off the mountains, and a tiny bit of sun shined through.
It took hours for the fog and clouds to clear from the plains, where the helicopters land and takeoff, but eventually the air was clear. I could hear the now familiar thwacking of helicopters flying this afternoon.

During our ride, Shyla's amazing nose found a very old vertebra, from an elk or a cow, and she was proud of it! I've trained her to bring me things like this in exchange for a jackpot of treats. That way, I can prevent her from gnawing on it and possibly hurting herself. When I first met her, she used to play "keep away" with yucky treasures.
And, during our ride I spotted mushroom species that I have *never* seen before in our neck of the woods. This species must wait underground for the once in a hundred years when it's wet enough for it to survive above ground.

After a wet ride, I left Shyla home to snooze with her brother while I went out to tour the flood damage in our area. Yes, the new Duo is sleeping on the bed that many of you gave K as a gift when she was going through chemotherapy. These two adore it, and it warms my heart to see them on it.
Today was the first day that I dared venture far from home during my solo ride. Because we don't live in a narrow or steep canyon, I didn't see anything too dramatic, although many trails and forest roads are now rivers of water flowing downhill. There's been an incredible amount of erosion but it looks like we can cope with it with a bit of work.

I loved seeing the autumn flowers that are going crazy with all the moisture!
By the end of my ride, the sun was out, and the flowers and I were turning our faces to feel its warm rays!
Perhaps things will start to dry out now. I hope so, and I hope that the stranded people were rescued today. These floods have certainly reminded me that life can change completely in a single day.


  1. So glad to check in and find you all okay. Not necessarily cozy and thrilled, but okay. Given the situation, that's a start, right?

    Love the picture of the pups on K's bed. They're very cute.

    Anyway, just stopping in to check on you all due to the news. Thinking of you and wishing you well....

  2. Like Leslie, I'm stopping by also, KB, to check on you & all. Several times a day you're in my thoughts... wondering how things are going & praying for your safety.

    So glad the news of sunshine greeted your readers/friends today. That makes the sun shine in our hearts, even if it's not shining on our landscape in the various places we are all located.

    Holding you close in thought & prayer~ Andrea

  3. Hope the sun's out to stay for awhile!

    XXXOOO Daisy, Bella & Roxy

  4. Hi KB, I was hoping for better news about the roads and rescues, hang in there, if the power stays on, food is enough, dogggies doing OK, and we out here are all sending hugs and care across the miles, that must improve the odds so much. LOL, XXX and more from NZ down under, Fond hello from Jean. Nearly 1 a.m. your time, Sleep Well.

  5. I'm so happy to hear that you are OK and the sun came out. Interesting about the mushroom, those are the "fruiting bodies", many people don't know that most of the actual fungus lives underground. It's a pretty one!

  6. The whims of Mother Nature are so odd. There have been no Atlantic hurricanes this year, which is very odd, so what does she do but vent her wrath (and surplus rain!) in Colorado. I sure hope she gives up and moves on....

  7. Here's hoping for lots of sunshine for a while! Love the picture of the snoozing Duo :)

  8. I've been reading your blog for quite a while but have never commented before. Just wanted you to know how much I appreciate your perspective on the terrible flooding in Colorado. Do you know if your "long way around" 120 mile route to town is clear and safe to drive?

    The lion shots yesterday were amazing!

    ~Clair Z in southern New Mexico

  9. Hope the rain stays away for a while now. It'll be a long time before life returns to normal again.

  10. Gosh how scary. We hope all this dries up quickly before anymore devastation happens. Sending CA sun your way
    Benny & Lily

  11. Hi KB, thanks for the update. Lovely pictures of the Duo, as always, and what a cool mushroom! Keep safe.
    Melon and Cocoa


  12. Great post, KB!

    The pups look cozy snuggled together. I try not to think of how long its going to take before anything approaching "normal" is available for many residents of CO.

    We are with you everyday, watching and reading about your goings on and are hopeful some roads can get fixed (at least), so you can work, shop and wrap your arms around friends.


  13. I hope the sun is out for good now, really, how much rain can there be in the rockies? I love the mushroom, that's a new one for me too.

  14. yes, every thing can and does change in a single moment or day.

    lovely to see your photos
    we get those little mushrooms here in our woods. I looked it up for you, pretty sure it is: Witch's Hat, Hygrocybe conica.

    sending light around the flooding!

  15. Every time we see a new report on the news we are saddened by the devastation of all the rain! We hope you will be able to get into town soon but can't imagine how isolated you must be!

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

  16. We first gotta say that picture of Shyla & R in the bed is priceless! We keep looking at it and smiling.

    We feel so bad for those who need to be rescued off the mountains. We haven't heard or seen any pictures, but we sure hope they are allowing the peoples pets too!

    Be safe on your rides and DON'T eat the mushrooms!

    Lily Belle & Muffin

  17. We are so happy to hear that the sun is shining for you!
    Love the mushroom photo, KB!

  18. Love seeing that mushroom and the bright flowers. Today was blue sky here but clouds are now forming over the western mountains. it's just never-ending! Hope you have lots of food on hand! Are college classes suspended in Boulder?

  19. Oh, I am so glads that peeps were able to be rescued today! I'm sure all of you are just a little tired of the wet. I, like Benny and Lily, will send you some warm California sunshine! I hopes the rain is gonna leave your state alone long enough for everything to get repaired.
    Paws crossed for every peep and pups and four legger that needs help.
    The rain sure did make for some FABulous pic thou!
    And, that doggie bed pic is the bestest!! ADORABLES!!
    Ruby ♥

  20. Hope the people who need to are rescued and that you stay safe!

  21. I'm glad that you're all still alright, and I love that picture of Shyla and R on the bed together! They make a great pair. Here's hoping for more sunshine in your future!

  22. We have been spending time- getting caught up on all your stories and beautiful photos... and we wanted to let you know we are here- and we care about all of you.
    tweedles and moms

  23. We were very close to our first frost last night. And the flowers dramatically show it. I wonder if you had a real frost last night, since you are significantly higher than me.

    Good to know the helicopters are beginning to get through, but so sad that the road is going to take so long to be repaired.


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