Friday, October 31, 2008

First snow signs

We had a little sleet after Tuesday's second gale. Probably a cold front at the back of the low. It didn't stick, but it did get me to thinking about switching tires and picking up my yard.

Today is cold right now, before the dawn, but will be sunny. My crew is back out at the Alpaca farm, so we should have a good day. Tomorrow, Saturday, I'll pick up the yard. Or lose my gear!

I'm in the habit of keeping equipment for the tractor around the edge of the school bus and plow truck turnaround that is really our driveway. This works fine for spring, summer, and fall. In the winter, the plow truck seems to go around that turnaround at about 50 miles an hour, and anything not removed from the danger zone will get a full broadside and like as not be flipped over, or worse, through the sheep fencing.

We will get our first four, six, or twelve-inch snowstorm sometime between now and December 20th. In year's past, according to dairies like that of Jonathan Wright, a Great Farm neighbor in the late 1800s, Jackson could confidently expect it's first snowstorm before Hallow'een.

Once the first storm comes, chances are good, 75-25, that the snow sticks and accumulates with the second and third, until we have several feet on the ground, and huge piles of plowings all around that loop road, which becomes a kind of giant snow fort. Sometimes, though, the first storm melts and refreezes, and we have two or three weeks of soggy then icy mess until the second.

We will have between six and ten storms each winter, of which four or five will be heavy, over twelve inches, and require us to change our plans for the day while we get plowed out and plow ourselves out. Being at the end of the road, our chances of getting snowed in for eight, ten, twelve or even twenty-four hours are pretty good. The occasional winter brings a storm that has us snowbound for two or three days.

Something to look forward to. I always enjoy the readjustment of values that occurs when a workday is terminated by a major storm. My usual response is to throw another log on the fire, put on a pot of beans, and take it easy.

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Welcome to our Farm Blog.
The purpose of this blog is for Aimee and I to communicate with friends and family, with those of our students, and other folks in general who are interested in homesteading and farming activities.

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