Monday, December 10, 2012

Note to Self Regarding Snow

First snow of season
December 9, 2012

I was reminded that there had to be another snow before this or the snow we had to trudge through at the top of the pass to get the Christmas tree would not have been there. But if you live in snow country you know there is snow, and Snow, and SNOW. AND OMG SNOW. So the snow we got previously in, I believe it was October, was not Snow but snow and it didn't hang around nor leave us a promise to return any time soon. All of which gives you a false sense of security. We had all begun to talk of the non-winter.

The later the first Snow or SNOW comes the more unprepared you are. Especially if the daytime temps are in the 50's and nights are not even freezing. One gets a bit lax in fact. Like where I placed the snow shovel.

Against the garden wall

Or for that matter that I and the neighbor share a snow blower now and it is behind her house. Yes, it can dig itself out but we have to shovel a path to get to it. And the shovel is 20 feet away from the back door and through 10" of snow. Note to self: Put snow shovel on front porch. Have neighbor put her snow shovel on enclosed porch.

Another note to self: Put more firewood on front porch. My insurance company wants all firewood 30' from the house. And because of that and prevailing winds I built a wood shed in 2007 that not only keeps my firewood dry but visible. That was after the winter of 2006 when I lost three cords of wood under six feet of snow. The alee opening for said woodshed is through 50 feet of 10" of snow and in a divergent direction from the snow shovel in its current location.

It is to be noted that said insurance company does not like firewood stacked on the front porch but when a snow storm is coming I do not care. If they can make it through the storm to report me as cheating on the rules than good for them. I only maintain enough there for a couple fires and only when a storm is coming but I had forgotten just how much wood it takes to keep my house toasty warm with the temp at 3.5F and a howling wind. BTW I try never to know the wind chill. TMI.

It was that now infamous winter of 2006 that closed all passes out of this valley for four days while every single condo and vacation rental was full of tourists. I had always wanted, when I lived in the real world, to get snowed in and not be able to return to work for a few extra days but some people are different. And not having a full larder, lots of firewood, and not self-entertaining does create problems for the stranded and those that have to put up with he stranded. Since then I try always to have at least food for two weeks. And the wood shed has almost three cords of firewood all cut and stacked. And there is another half cord out by the fence on the windward side of the house. My theory being that it might prevent drifts across the backyard. It has gotten so bad in the past that the dogs have to go out the studio door. And no doubt today they will walk in my wake as I shovel a path to the wood shed. If only I could teach them to retrieve the snow shovel.

Note to self: Get second snow shovel. I had two at one time. Most recent tenants destroyed one and they were not even here in a winter month.

But the real big note to self regarding snow is - NEVER BELIEVE THE WEATHER REPORT. This was not suppose to be a big storm. Forecast was for 2 to 4 inches of snow at first. And then upped to 4 to 6. There is really 10" plus out there and the wind has created bigger drifts.

The first snow is always a shake down cruise regardless of how many years you have lived in the mountains.


  1. What a great reminder. I sure admire your hardy self sufficiency. I almost hate to admit it, but I have never shoveled snow. The husband always does it, by hand. I could be hauled before the committee for anti-Canadian activities.

    1. One winter I shoveled so much snow I was considering doing a fitness video about it. Done right it is good exercise. But today with new snow on the ground I have about the same response to it as I do to making the bed - oh, no, not again.


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