Ranchers and Drivers Must Deal With High Winds - ABC FOX MONTANA NEWS, WEATHER, SPORTS - KTMF/KWYB

Ranchers and Drivers Must Deal With High Winds

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LIVINGSTON -

Cold weather is hitting the country, and Montana is no exception.

Many know strong winds are normal in Livingston, but still Thursday night's high winds caused all kinds of trouble for ranchers and travelers.

"Once you've lived here for so long it just comes naturally," said Sarah Boyer. "You just deal with it. It's part of your life."

Sarah Boyer has lived in Livingston all her life and she's used to dealing with the high winds.

But that doesn't mean they don't affect her.

"Today it was really storming and windy and I was trying to clean stalls, the horses, and they just want in the barn so they are out of the wind, but I need two stalls. You just don't get a break," Boyer said.

She said she had to clean the horse stalls so they could be inside at night where it is warmer, and safer.

"When the wind blows really bad I always get a little worried that something's going to fly off the roof, or a roof, and hit them. I mean there are always pieces of roofs everywhere," Boyer said.

The winds also make it tough for Boyer to get to Bozeman, especially when Montana Department of Transportation shuts down Interstate 90 in Livingston because of high winds.

"It's just hard with all the semis coming through town and you're trying to go across town to pick up anybody from school, it takes an extra 20 minutes to get there," said Boyer.

MDT spokeswoman Lori Ryan said when wind speeds reach 65 mph in Livingston, they shut down I-90 at exit 330 and people have to take the business loop to get back on the interstate at exit 337.

She said they let people know about the detour using electronic messaging signs in the Livingston area.

"We also coordinate with the Billings District at Big Timber for notification via a variable messaging sign at Big Timber," said Ryan.

Ryan said only semis and towing units had to detour from 7 p.m. Thursday to 6 a.m. Friday.

The National Weather Service said wind gusts reached 78 mph Thursday night at the Mission Field Airport in Livingston.

They said that is normal for this time of year.

Still, it's not something the locals ever look forward to.

"You really have to adjust your lifestyle to deal with it," said Boyer.

Northwestern Energy officials said power was restored by 7 p.m. after high winds caused minor scattered outages between Livingston and Big Timber earlier Friday.

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