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'Not a lot left:' Ranch near Waterton burned up by wildfire


Published on September 13, 2017

Fire damage to the Rocking Heart Ranch just outside Waterton Lakes National Park is shown in a handout photo. With a forecast calling for rain for the next few days, crews fighting a wildfire in Waterton Lakes National Park and the surrounding area in southern Alberta have some reason for optimism. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Sierra Garner MANDATORY CREDIT

WATERTON, Alta. — Members of a southern Alberta ranching family are leaning on each other for support after a wildfire consumed most of the property.

Sierra Garner, whose grandparents own Rocking Horse Ranch just outside Waterton Lakes National Park, says everything is gone except for a farm equipment shop that was surrounded by gravel.

Treasured family keepsakes, including a cowboy hat that belonged to her great-great-grandfather, have been destroyed.

She says her family is grateful everyone got out safely and that none of the 100 or so horses on the ranch was hurt.

Garner says her family is close-knit and would not be so calm and collected if they didn't have each other.

The wildfire, estimated at 330 square kilometres, has not spread into the national park's townsite, but has destroyed its visitor centre and other buildings.

The Canadian Press