It may have been a change in the barometric pressure, the phase of the moon with its gravitational pull, a stalking pack of coyotes, or simply the lead cow deciding she needed a change of scenery. The herd decided, in the middle of the night, during the driving, warm rain of the Pineapple Express that was melting the snow-pack and sending tons of water into the Nehalem, to cross the River.
The idyllic picture that I had posted last week doesn’t look anything like this view from the bridge of the muddy and swollen Nehalem River.
The herd is stranded in the upper field at the far and right side of this picture. Where the river was cross-able for a cow 12 hours earlier is now swift and flowing about 6-7 feet deep in the middle. The rain kept coming and the river expanded from when I took this pic.
Instead of the herd getting fed in the outside feeders, we had to resort to feeding them on the cold and very wet snow. We had to pick and choose where we fed because pools of water dotted the field where they were stranded.
This pasture is not very big compared to the large grazing area across the river and in two days they had mudded and pooped up much of the area, yet the river still had not receded enough for the herd to swim back across. We continued to feed on the ground each morning and evening.