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Ranch hands will hike in to remove dead cows piece by piece.

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Frozen cows to be removed by hand-saw, fire and explosives don’t meet green rules

Ranch hands will hike in to remove dead cows piece by piece.

Hand-saws will be used to cut up six frozen cows discovered in an abandoned Colorado mountain cabin as opposed to fire or explosives the Forest Service was considering to remove the carcasses before the spring thaw.

Federal officials are being forced to adhere to strict environmental regulations to dispose of the cows, which they say needs to be taken care before bears come out of hibernation and sniff out the corpses, which are in a popular hiking area near Aspen.

Forest Service officials initially said that blowing up the cabin or burning it down would be the fastest and most efficient means of meeting environmental regulations, which forbid the use of motorized vehicles or machinery.

But a Forest Service official told the Aspen Daily News Wednesday that fire and explosives “would have required environmental assessment work and that’s not the fastest way to go.”

Several ranch hands will make the nearly nine-mile hike to the cabin near the Conundrum Hot Springs this week, carrying the hand saws to cut up 6,000 consolidated pounds of frozen cow, and then will disperse the remains to speed up decomposition.

The cows were discovered in March by hikers and reported to the Forest Service, however another hiker is now telling reporters in Colorado that he saw the cows alive but trapped in the cabin after a November snowstorm. That hiker said he sent photos of the live cows to the rangers in hopes the cows would be rescued, but Forest Service officials say they never got the hiker’s email or photos.

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Audrey Hudson is an award-winning investigative journalist whose enterprise reporting has sparked numerous congressional investigations that led to laws signed by Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton. She won the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi award for Public Service in 2009 for her report on dangerous drug experiments by the federal government on war veterans, which prompted internal investigations and needed reforms within the Veterans Affairs Department. The report also captured first place for investigative reporting by the Washington, D.C. chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists and was a finalist of the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences Webby Awards for news and politics. Her breaking stories have been picked up and followed by major news publications and periodicals, including Readers Digest, Washington Monthly, and The Weekly Standard, as well as The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and Washington Post. With nearly 20 years of experience in Washington as a newspaper reporter and as a Capitol Hill staffer for Western lawmakers, she will now lead Human Events‚?? coverage of energy and environmental issues. A native of Kentucky, Mrs. Hudson has worked inside the Beltway for nearly two decades -- on Capitol Hill as a Senate and House spokeswoman, and most recently at The Washington Times covering Congress, Homeland Security, and the Supreme Court. Audrey‚??s email is AHudson@EaglePub.Co

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