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Snowy thoughts

Wintery things to think on and dangers to be aware of

Climate change is something we’ve all been aware of ever since we stepped out the door in the middle of a winter storm to get farm chores done. The term is going to be politically correct for ever and for everyone because everybody knows the weather is going to change. The only difference is that some people are going to make money on the term and make others pay dearly for it.


Anyway, as I write this, I’m looking out the window at more climate change – the front edge of another massive snowstorm bearing down on the Mid-Atlantic. And I unfortunately live in the bull’s eye of the weather map’s heaviest snow fall.


After 27 inches of snow last weekend, another 18 inches are predicted. That’s going to plug up many roads for days, especially where the first snowfall wasn’t plowed back.


But after growing up in North Country and in the land of 10- to 15-foot drifts, I still like snow storms – as long as I can stay warm and off the road. I enjoy seeing those big 4WD pickups flirting with the ditch, and delight (a little bit) when they get hung up.


But on a serious note, I’ve also seen more than my share of barn roofs caved in due to heavy snows. More than one has brought calamity and huge losses with cattle trapped beneath. In two cases I’ve personally witnessed, the free stall barns were not equipped with crossbracing between the trusses. And unfortunately, far too many free stall barns aren’t equipped for the snow load that will come with this week’s storm.


One more thing. This winter is far from over. Consider yourself forewarned.


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