When Tracy Kelly-Rios' horse Chicky went missing on Dec. 22 it was kind of like looking for a needle in a haystack. The horse had only been at its new home for a few days, having been in foster care after being abandoned and then saved from slaughter.
It had looked like happy trails ahead for the 6-year-old quarter horse, but Chicky got out of her pen and slipped into the forest. With the thought that the horse may have crossed the river and a confirmed sighting, hoof prints eventually were found near the Calawah River.
On Dec. 28 with no sightings of the horse, Kelly-Rios organized a search party and about a dozen people searched the area. It was reported that Chicky may have been hanging out with an elk herd. After a day of searching, Kelly-Rios remained positive that her horse would be found.
On New Year's Eve late in the day, Skin Jackson spotted Chicky on a side road off the A Road. Several searchers went to the spot but Chicky had lost her harness and they were unable to catch her and with darkness setting in, Chicky's rescue had to wait until the next day.
New Year's Day dawned with hope and by the afternoon Chicky was home again safe in her pen although Kelly-Rios described the wandering animal as "a little miffed."
Kelly-Rios said that she would especially like to thank Skin Jackson and Jacob Turner for finding Chicky and Karen and Rick Reaves, Naomi Huggins and Dana Cross for helping round her up as well as all the other people that took time to search over the 10 days Chicky was missing.
About Chicky's big adventure Kelly-Rios joked, "When I heard this was the Year of the Horse, they weren't kidding."