|Beautiful, frosty morning on a day
that never made it above zero.
As part of my morning routine, I check the weather, and from the looks of it, most of America is ready for spring. There have been record cold temperatures (complete with snow and ice) in the Southern states, record breaking snowfall amounts in the Northeast and extended frigid temperatures here in the Midwest. It is no mystery, this winter has been cold and brutal. While I am not fond of working outside in these conditions, I am hesitant to complain.
When a winter storm is forecast, we not only prepare ourselves by stocking up on supplies and fueling the generators, we also prepare our cattle by getting them into the protection of the hills. Cattle grow a thick winter coat that keeps them warm in fairly cold conditions, but it becomes useless in the snow and wind.
During sustained cold, cattle need extra energy to keep warm so we supplement with hay or cake. Hay is also fed if the snow cover is so deep the cattle cannot reach the grass underneath. Diesel pickups and tractors do not like winter either, and it can be a challenge to get them started on feeding days. Honestly, I can relate. In the middle of a blizzard and bitter cold, it is hard for me to get started too!
As temperatures dip below freezing, ice covered water tanks become a major concern. If the windmills and solar pumps are putting out water, the tanks are usually open, as moving water is less likely to freeze. The key word here is “usually.” The frigid temperatures have provided us with an abundance of thick ice to chop. The good news is, we have an arsenal of tools to help us bust through any thickness, right down to a chainsaw if need be!
|My daughter and I, sledding! It was a blast!|
Winter storms foil plans and increase work loads, but they provide many blessings as well. All the snow we have had this year has, brought much needed moisture to the drought stricken land, provided us with beautiful landscapes, and allowed us to share the happiness of sledding with our kids! So, while many folks are grumbling and tired of winter, I am hesitant to complain.