CONUNDRUM HOT SPRINGS, Colo. — Two Air Force Academy cadets made an unusual discovery during a spring break snow-shoeing trip when they came upon several dead cows inside a cabin.
Now, the US Forest Service is trying to figure out what to do with the frozen carcasses.
After a long day of hiking and soaking in the hot springs Cadet Marshall Kay and Cadet Cameron Harris were looking forward to spending the night in an old abandoned cabin they had come across.
But it turns out some lost cows had already claimed the sanctuary.
“I think we’re going have to sleep on the snow tonight man the cabin is full of frozen cows,” Kay told his friend.
The US Forest Service says the cows were part of a herd that went missing last fall from the Gunnison National Forest and may have wandered into the cabin looking for shelter.
“We were upset nonetheless, cause we had nowhere to stay. So we went back into town and got revenge and ate a couple of big burgers,” said Harris.
The US Forest Service is weighing its options on how to effectively remove the cows. The first option is to do nothing and allow nature to take its course.
The second option is to start a fire and burn the cabin as well as the cows.
The last option is to utilize explosives to disperse the cow carcasses and speed up the decomposition process.
No decision has been made, but officials say they want to minimize any potential danger.
“We want to avoid any negative interactions between people and wildlife, particularly the mountain lions and the bears that are going to be feeding on the carcasses ,” said Steve Segin, a spokesman for the U.S. Forest Service.
Forest officials say using mechanical devices or hiking the cows out would be impossible because of the terrain.
Once a decision is made the area will have to be closed to remove the cattle.
The cadets say there were six cows inside the cabin, some of them calves.