You may have heard about the storms out here in the Pacific Northwest...I don't think anyone expected that the effects would be this severe. Folks in west-central Washington seem to be bearing the brunt of all of the flooding, which has even closed I-5 between Portland and Seattle.
I started to wonder about how area cheesemakers might be doing...then I came across an article about the flooding that included an account of Brad and Meg Gregory of Black Sheep Creamery being rescued along with their children on Monday. Their farm is located directly adjacent to the Chehalis River - it's a gorgeous setting in great weather, but I can only imagine how deep the water must be right now. Read the article here.
Twin Oaks Creamery and La Ferme de Metras (an established sheep farm starting cheese production soon) are also nearby.
From the article, it looks as if the Gregorys have likely lost most of their herd and who knows how much of their cheesemaking operation.
Brad and Meg, we're thinking of you. More later as I receive more information.
UPDATE Dec 5th: The Gregorys are safe and staying with friends. They've managed to recover 22 ewes of 85, but lost all of their bucks - they've lost 3/4 of their flock in all. All the sheep that survived spent 12 hours in the water. Their cheesemaking facilities are damaged and covered in mud and muck. Though they live next to the Chehalis River, that area hadn't seen a flood of this magnitude in over 100 years.
Update Dec 6th: See Meg's account of what they've endured over the past few days here. Thankfully they've managed to save most of their cheese.
Update Dec 7th: Estrella Family Creamery in Montesano, Washington (about 50 miles to the Northwest of the Centralia/Chehalis area) lost the roof to their goat barn in the gale force winds, but otherwise they're OK.