C+ Rodeos Stock contractor Roy Call called it nothing short of a mess through what they’ve had to endure during the BC wildfires to date.
“The day to day thing for us – what do you do?” Call said. “We are trying to rodeo every week but it’s been a real pain.”
Friday, July 15, Call brough two freight loads of stock to Anahim Lake.
“I got them all home but not until the Monday and didn’t get them back home to the ranch until Wednesday or Thursday. My brother (Earl) went to the rodeo in Pritchard and that stock ended up there for a week. We had some friends with a big ranch there and they stayed there for a week before we were able to bring them home.”
This past weekend the Calls were in Fort St. John for another rodeo, where Call said he had to leave two loads prior to bringing them home due to the roads.
The wildfires also took a toll on the Call’s property as fences were burned, along with pasture out on the road to Horsefly and Likely.
“It’s just the loss of pasture, the loss of feed – you’ve got horses in there – for everyone involved it’s sad,” he said. “The ranches have been safe at our place thankfully and my brother Earl and mom Carol stayed home the whole time. We had two, sometimes three or four liners out but sometimes still 200 animals at home we were worried about, and you can’t just evacuate those anywhere. But with irrigations and things at the house we were safe, but stressful on everybody.”
As for the toll the wildfire season has taken on the BC Rodeo Association circuit this summer, Call said there have been some cancellations.
“They cancelled the Billy Barker Days, but Prince George kept their fair runing but cancelled the rodeo portion which is coming up in two weeks,” he said.
While drastic times call for drastic measures, and while Call has he’s had many of his animals well cared for througout the province, most things have gone back to normal.
“They’re almost all back,” he said. “The stuff that’s gone still, I can get the home. It’s been really scrounging around, kind of, but our next rodeo will be Chilliwack, then we might have to go back to Prince George and go that way.”