From Pipi’s Pasture: The weekend snowstorm |

From Pipi’s Pasture: The weekend snowstorm

Diane Prather/For Craig Press

It started snowing on Saturday night. When I got up at 5:30 a.m. Sunday morning to make coffee, I opened the front door just a crack and peeked out onto the front porch. It looked like it had snowed just a little bit, but the wind was blowing. I decided maybe it wouldn't be too difficult to get morning chores done (because I know how deep the drifts get when it snows and blows here at Pipi's Pasture). I went back to bed for a while to wait for the coffee.

Less than two hours later, after it was light enough to see, I gathered up my two buckets and an old coffee can full of cat food and started out to do chores. As soon as I stepped off the porch, I saw it had snowed enough to cover up the ice. In fact, it was fairly easy going as I crossed to the shop.

Bud, a big black cat, was hunkered down in front of the big shop door. Bud always eats his breakfast from a pan on the front porch, but this morning, he wasn't interested in going past the covered entry to the shop. By now, it was starting to snow, and the wind continued to blow.

Bud followed me to the carport where we keep the grain. I poured some of the cat food into a pan and laid out two grain sacks so he had a place to sleep in the dry carport.

Next, I went back by the shop and around the corner to a side gate. The snow wasn't very deep, but it was slightly drifted. I was able to open the gate and walk to the corral with no problems. I congratulated myself once I got to the corral, because the snow hadn't drifted in front of the main gate. I was able to open it easily and pull a bale through.

Feeding the cows didn't present any problems, either, though it was really snowing and blowing by then. During the night, the wind had blown from the west, so the cows spent the night in the front part of the pasture, where they had protection from a row of lilacs in the yard. By the time I started putting off hay, the wind had shifted and was blowing from the north, so we fed them next to the fence, where they had protection from some buildings. The summer calves jumped and played as they came to the hay.

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After making sure all the water containers had been filled, it was back to the house to set four pair of gloves and my coats out to dry. We watched it snow and blow all day. When it blows, the lane into our house often blows shut, so we wondered about it, but we didn't go out, and nobody tried to come in.

Evening chores weren't so easy. There was a lot more snow to wade through — not so easy with buckets of grain. The side gate was nearly blown shut, but I was able to push through a small opening. At the corral — amazingly — I could still get through the main gate.

We can usually predict where the drifts will be after a blizzard. This one was a little different. The snow blew off the front and back lawns, and there was a large bare area behind a mountain of large bales.

Today, our son, Jamie, and daughter-in-law, Brandi, called to let us now there had been an earthquake in Alaska the night before (they moved there in July). Some residents were evacuated because there was danger of a tsunami. That makes our snowstorm seem pretty tame.