Saturday, October 31, 2009

Wayward cows and Halloween mysteries...

I went out to my car this morning and found Brigid and Gilly muching on the front lawn. (Happily, I might add.) I thought they finally got up the gumption to jump five feet over the still broken electric fence. But I since was racing out the door, I ran inside to get the mighty man and let him deal with it. (I was late.)

When I came home I found him in the middle of a new project that appeared to be far off the long list of problems caused by this week's lightning strike.

Apparently Brigid and Gilly escaped because a Douglass Fir came down and smashed the fence in the lower pasture. It took two trees with it on the way down. I was just out there yesterday and the tree was standing and the fence was fine. It must have fallen in the night.

Didn't take long for those two bovine high-steppers to wander right through the branches and find their way to green grass. (Confirming their suspicion that the grass really is greener on the other side of the fence!)

A closer investigation found the giant Doug fir next to fallen tree had bad scarring down the entire length of it. Here's an example of the scar....
At first I thought the one tree had damaged the other on the way down but then I looked up a hundred feet or so and saw the same kind of damage running all the way down the tree, way higher than the other tree could have caused. Hmm, this is getting way more mysterious by the minute.

It almost looked like the giant fir got hit by a lightning strike too. Could we have had two lightning strikes in one storm?

But then why would it have taken few days for the smaller tree to fall over? And why would the smaller tree have fallen at all.
The fallen tree was cracked and split in a funny spirally way that this picture doesn't show. It looked to me like the tree was forced apart.
I guess that is a mystery we will never solve.
In the meantime, we are getting a headstart on next year's pile of firewood and the beginnings of a new woodland compost pile out of the deal. Too bad though, we liked the tree.

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