Living in Wildfire Country

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As smoke settled around our Bend, Ore., home Monday morning I hitched up the horse trailer just in case. Before my husband left for work, we had a short discussion about our wildfire plans. If the fire on Bureau of Land Management acreage five miles east of our small horse property forced an evacuation, I would turn on the lawn sprinklers, grab our important documents’ folder, load the horses, pack up the dogs and cat, and let the chickens loose from their coop. I would then head for safety at a friend’s boarding facility on the other side of town.

Making a plan like that feels a little surreal. But our recent coverage of devastating wildfires in central Washington and the heartbreaking stories horses and livestock set loose, burnt, and lost made the risk to my own home and horses, as well as our need for a logical evacuation plan, all the more real

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Written by:

Michelle Anderson is the former digital managing editor at The Horse. A lifelong horse owner, Anderson competes in dressage and enjoys trail riding. She’s a Washington State University graduate and holds a bachelor’s degree in communications with a minor in business administration and extensive coursework in animal sciences. She has worked in equine publishing since 1998. She currently lives with her husband on a small horse property in Central Oregon.

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