We went to bed the night before last to the power flickering and the wind howling. But as I lay there in bed listening to my basement bedroom window being sandblasted by wind from a direction that the winds never blow from; I knew we were in for some damage. I just wasn't aware of how much.
Between here (The Royal Ranch) and The Roost, our "nest in the woods" as we like to call it; are some very thick, very old forests, and even regular wind storms can wreak havoc on power lines, etc. We learned our lesson early on upon buying the ranch and the Roost; if the power goes out, chances are there is a tree down on the lines somewhere on Camp Creek road and we can find it and let IREA (our power coop) know where the problem is a bit faster to get it fixed a bit faster.
So when we awoke in the night without power it was not a big surprise, nor was it a big surprise to still not have power in the morning. The surprises started coming when we saw the AMOUNT of damage. Between here and our cabin, which means our soon to be home, The Double J, there were at least 20 downed trees! Many of them in the roadway to Camp Creek, along the power line, some on neighbors properties; like a roof and a classic Blazer.
The guys had a great day on Sunday "working" to clear trees and drink beer together. Our wonderful neighbors Dan and Steve pitched in of course and they all three went up to Sean and Rocky's (yes that is a girl's name and she is soooo cool!) because they are the one's that had the tree on the roof and that dang cool Blazer (Dad, it is the yellow of the Jeep that I tried to talk you into giving me-ha!); of course the tree went right down the middle of the hood and roof of the beautifully lifted classic!
We must say, that we are very proud of our power coop, IREA. Although they are not to hip on alternative power or rebates of any kind like that; when it comes to an emergency or downed lines those guys are all over it! They had Camp Creek back up and cleaned up in just a few hours; and we are talking some big trees with some major power outages. And each time we passed them they were always pleasant and had a smile on their faces. We even got a robo-call saying they were sorry for any inconvenience; last time I checked IREA had no control over the wind, but it sure was kind of them to call.
I was curious about all of the trees that were damaged. They ranged in size from about 6 inches in diameter to well over a foot. The large ones of course were old/rotten on the inside and will make great firewood and if they aren't on private property we will make good use of them. Many of the smaller ones Tom noted had either been damaged many years ago by lightning or something else, possibly beetles, but he didn't see many signs of those, thankfully.
One of the most amazing things about this storm is that these trees didn't just break off and fall to the ground like they normally do. Many of them we found multiple feet away. The wind had broken them off and then carried them 10-15 feet in some cases, simply unreal!!! We have walked through a lot of forests around here and not seen evidence of that kind of storm, I think this really was a once in a lifetime windstorm....at least I am hoping it was.