Tuesday, December 24, 2013

October Snowflakes!

There were a lot of predictions by the weather people that this winter was going to be a doozy... and like most of the time, when the weatherman speaks... you just kinda put him on ignore... because the weather usually does the exact opposite of his predictions.

However, I am beginning to wonder if they might have "some" of it right.  It wasn't long after we got our first frost, that the first snowfall arrived in all its glory!

 On October 28th, we looked out our windows to see this sight awaiting us!  Our first snowfall of the year had arrived!

Now, you see that one tree in the middle, very tall, and orange... that is a tamarack tree.  It is a legend, as I've heard from my grandmother... that when the tamarack loses its needles, then the snow will fly...

Well, this year, we got a dusting of snow in October while the tamarack still had its needles, but... the snow didn't last very long, and wasn't much to speak of at all... so... grandma may be right after all!

I took just a few pictures of the dusting of snow that we got as it lay on our patio furniture outside, as a stark reminder to us that winter was on its way, and it was time to put everything safely up for the winter ahead!

Just a peek around our yard at the dusting of snow...

Here is the picnic table my dad fixed up for us this summer while he was here... coated with snow.  I knew after it melted, I needed to get busy and put all my patio furniture up safely in our sheds for the coming winter months!

We went out to our place to see how much snow had fallen out there.  The elevation at our property is about 300 feet higher than where we live now.  But, there was still just a sprinkling of snow out there too.

We had put up a hunting blind on the property for our eager hunters.... including myself.  We sat out there for several hours hoping to see something.... but I think the deer have a built in calendar that tells them when hunting season begins, because we had seen a lot of activity on our property before hunting season, but once it began, it seemed like the deer were nowhere to be found.

The squirrels were about the only ones out there, and apparently they thought this deer blind was meant for them, and they ripped the top to shreds! We were not too happy with them when we saw the damage they made to the blind! If they weren't so cute... my son might find them on the end of his .22 scope! 

The snow lay on the trees like sifted sugar, and while there wasn't much of it, it was still very beautiful!

  A couple of days later, the snow had melted, and we were eager to get burning. We had been waiting until the open burn season had started.  We couldn't burn before this time, because we have no water on the property, but once open burn season begins, you can burn without water, because it is usually after snow has fallen.

We had quite a time getting the wet wood to burn though.  It took some careful tending of the fire to get it going, and keep it going.  Our daughter seemed to excel at keeping the fire going.  She was putting into practice some of the skills she had learned in the 4H Survival Classes this summer.

We finally got the fires going, and I forgot to take a picture of them burning, because we were so busy hauling brush, and it was very dirty, wet, hard work!  We hauled brush, and burnt brush all day, and at the end of the day, we had succeeded in burning three huge piles of brush, along with all the limbs, twigs, and branches of trees that had we trimmed up or had cut to use for firewood.  It was a lot of work!

I had - thankfully - thought ahead to bring something for us to eat, so we had a picnic of sorts, out of the back of the van... it worked out well for us, as we could grab a bite to eat as we were able to.... just a note to my Mom and Dad... you'll be glad to know the gun was never far from us.... we have seen plenty of wildlife tracks out there that we now keep a rifle handy.... just in case! 

The day after we finished our marathon burning efforts, a much larger amount of snow showed up.  It was just gorgeous! You see that empty cleared spot above... just a day ago... that was a huge pile of brush... you can imagine how nice it is to walk around our place, and not have to look at those huge piles of brush!

What we really were doing out there was looking for some deer to fill our freezer with this winter.  Unfortunately for us.... the deer were in hiding!  We never saw nary a one!

A sweet little fir tree decked out in icy delight!

Looking from the back of our property toward the road.... before a huge brush pile obscured this view... now that the pile was gone, the view looks much better to us!

Just having fun walking around our property, and enjoying the magical winter wonderland spread around us!

 I imagined this fir tree saying to me... take a picture of me... take a picture of me.... pretty please! And of course, I had to oblige!

The farm next to us with their horses grazing on the snow-covered field...

I took the liberty to have a bit of fun playing with some different colors through the camera lens... this sepia tone gives the picture kind of a wild country look...

And taking the picture with black and white... kind of ominous with the dark overhanging clouds ...

 With a bluish tint to the camera... again, the purplish colors dominating the scene make the scene look rather dark and somber.

I went back to my typical settings, and brought the pictures back into focus with the colors showing as I was seeing them.  It is amazing how a camera setting can change up the whole mood of a picture!

 We took a drive over to Freeman Lake to see how winter was showing up over there.  You could see where the ice was already beginning to form out here.

And as we were headed back home, the beautiful colors of Lake Pend O'Reille backed with the Selkirk mountains was so amazing, and beautiful, that I had to have some more pictures of it ...

This is the view that we see every time we leave our little piece of property, and it never ceases to amaze me!

I have to say that winter is an absolutely beautiful and magical season up here in northwest Idaho.
The clouds, the snow, the mountains, the water, and the wildlife never cease to serve up new and amazing things to the buffet table of beauty that we feast on around here.  

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