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We Didn't Escape the Polar Vortex

We've been hearing that the Polar Vortex that is impacting the east coast could affect us as well this week, all the way out here in northwest Washington. The Olympic Rain Shadow often protects us from a significant amount of moisture falling, but every once in a while there is enough rain or snow moving through the area that we get hit hard.  Predictions indicated that one inch of snow would fall and that we'd have unusually low temperatures, getting as low as 18 degrees F at night.  The predictions weren't spot on this time around.  Last night and into this morning, four inches of snow accumulated.  So far, the nighttime lows have been easier on us than anticipated, only getting down to the upper 20s.

polar vortex snow at Vintage Home and Farm

I had to scrape a path out of the hen house this morning to get the birds to come outside.  Miss Prissy Fuzzy Bottom has been the most exuberant of all the birds, standing in the snow so she can gobble up as much of scratch grain and layer pellets as she can.

chickens in the snow

chickens and ducks in the snow

Normally there is a wild rush of birds zooming past me when I open up the hen house door in the morning.  This morning, however, they all stood there looking out at the snow in dismay.  I put some straw on the ground around the exit of the hen house so they'd have a dry place to come out to.  I have a feeling they'll be sticking close to their cozy hen house for the duration of the snow.

pasture covered in snow

The pasture near the milk shed doesn't have a single footprint in the snow yet.  This would be a great place to build a snowman.

snow on the farm

As you can see, the netting around the blueberries and the garden is sagging down under the weight of the snow.  We'll have to get out there and fix things once the snow has melted.

The netting around the blueberries and around the garden are sagging due to the weight of the snow.

At 8:30 a.m. all is quiet along the creek.  The trail doesn't have any footprints yet either, not even from deer.  The only sign of life is a few birds in the trees.

creek with snow

Trail with snow

woods with snow

Tree branches with snow

More snow and possibly strong winds are expected over the next few days.  We are burning through the firewood fast to try to keep the house comfortable.  Before the snow stops, we might have to go out and gather several more wheelbarrows full of wood to get us through.    

Keep warm and stay safe, everyone!