Monday, February 10, 2014
Light Snow........ No Really
It looks like once again we are going to be hit with sub-zero temps and since it's February a little more snow as well.
This Winter maybe unusual for it's longer than normal cold snaps but February is acting pretty normal as the beginning month of our bigger snow storms. Luckily I am used to this and have been planning my wood harvesting accordingly. I been dropping and marking trees all Winter now in specific locations that I can almost always get into even with snow on the ground. Once it melts it becomes a bit more questionable but usually if that is happening getting more wood in isn't really a dire emergency. I also have a few locations for mud scenarios too but so far haven't needed them. By this time of the season I have multiple choices of targets depending on conditions and I am now beginning to select out the live trees I will pull down to dry all Summer. Depending on the tree type some of them can be burned next Winter and some may need to lay a year or more.
I got a bit of a late start this morning because I had all the stuff I cut and split Friday and Saturday to stack up before I could go get more. I am mostly down to Elm with a little bit of the Oak and Locust left and some large apple believe it or not. I haven't burned a lot of Apple over the years, most of it has went out to friends for their smokers, but since my big old Apple tree died I cut it down last Summer and it's been in the back of my racks since then. I finally got down low enough to start burning it some. Mostly it is large pieces that I must say burn very well. I would place it right up there with the Oak and Locust in heat production although it does burn a bit faster then the others do. Makes some nice hot coals though.
Today's run was yet again another medium sized Elm trunk with a couple of small standing dead Locust. A full load but most of it is going to need split which is now on the agenda for tomorrow. Long about noon or so the first flakes started falling and the temps began dropping from the upper 20's ever so slowly. By the time I finished up and headed out it was snowing pretty hard.
I wasn't even a mile down the little gravel road until I ran up on a local (one of only two who live on that road) who was trying to pull his Ford 8N with a little Honda four wheeler. Apparently the starter went bad last time he tried to use Ford and he (with two helpers) were pulling into his garage to work on it. They weren't making much progress and were basically stuck trying to pull the tractor over a hump in the snow and blocking the road. I was blocked regardless but I would have stopped and helped him even if I wasn't blocked. That used up about an hour man handling it into his drive and garage and by that time the snow was really starting to pile up.
There is something immensely fun about driving on new snow in Four Wheel Drive and a load in the bed so heavy the truck just laughs at anything slick. It almost reminds me of driving one of the guns around when I was in the army. You don't go fast but you got nothing to worry about either. By the time I got home there were already several cars off in the ditch and more little SUV's pulling out of driveways frantically going to the store for Bread and Milk....
I tarped everything up and got ready once again. It's now almost 4AM and the temp is down to 8 degrees supposedly headed to zero this morning.
The "Light Snow" turned into about 3 inches and has pretty much covered all the blade work I did last week.
And yes I am back on 3 hour sleep shifts.
On the brightside the long term forecast is looking pretty good. Upper 40's by Thursday and then 40's all next week but we all know that can change fast.
Keep Prepping Everyone!!!!