Thursday, February 23, 2017

Downtrodden, but not totally dejected...

Boy, have I been having a difficult time staying positive lately. I have felt incredibly downtrodden and dejected. I think a lot of this negativity has to do with being more physically limited of late. This getting old stuff is not fun, and I'm not even that old;-)  I also think that I have been depriving myself of outdoor time as well (nature-deficit disorder), and that leads to sadness and irritability. Now that my arm is improving, I have started to venture outdoors more, and my mood has perked up slightly, which is a good thing...'cause I have been a very difficult person to live with (nothing new, but worse than usual.)

Today, instead of driving for an hour to get to the beach, we took the pups for a walk in our neighborhood, and then headed out onto the pond. As soon as my feet touched the snow-covered, icy surface some of my worries melted away.
And the longer we were out, the more my mood elevated. Snow does that for me... We walked across the pond to check out the newly renovated "old" beaver lodge.
Beaver lodge photo taken on Sept. 28, 2016
It is so much taller than it was this summer. 
And, we were pleased to see the open water next to the lodge, which means that the beavers are still alive and are maintaining the hole to enter and exit the lodge area.
This stick marks one of the beaver traps. The traps are supposed to be checked for beavers and removed.
I hope this happens 
before I begin the boating season or there will be a trap with a dead beaver in it
at the bottom of 
the pond.
The reason I say that some of the beavers are still alive is that there seem to be traps on either side of the lodge, so there are probably two beavers that have been drowned in the underwater traps. Since I know that there were a minimum of 4 beavers living in the pond at the beginning of winter, that leaves at least 2+ beavers to continue maintaining the lodges.
I just had to measure up to the beaver lodge. It is the largest one on Caesar Pond. By the way, the outdoor temp. was about 48F while we were on the ice.
Check out the tracks all around the lodge. None of the tracks were distinct, but  am assuming that some of them belong to the beavers.
We were going to check out one of the other lodges, but there are numerous springs near it and we didn't want to chance falling through the ice. So, we slushed our way home from the lodge, via the north end of the pond. As we walked southward, it became quite chilly with the wind in our faces. We had to bundle up and walk as quickly as we could to stay "warm". The snow had softened considerably, and it was super slushy underfoot. We kept punching down into the slush which made for a difficult, but satisfying journey home.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Popham Beach on a lovely winter's day

 Oh me, oh my-oh...the weather was absolutely lovely today. The air temp. rose to a balmy 52F under a partly cloudy sky, and we couldn't think of a better activity than a walk on the beach. 
Low tide was at 11:29 am, so we headed out to take advantage of the wide expanse of beach at Popham. We took the hounds and walked to our heart's content!
There were lots of people at the beach, and it seemed as if fully half of the parking lot was occupied with cars. We don't often get warm, sunny days like this in February! 
The back half of the beach was snow covered, while the portion that gets hit by the waves was plain sand.
We walked through the snow to the water's edge, and had to traverse a large section of wave-sculpted sand. I must admit that this uneven surface was tough on my knees. But, the walk was so worth the pain;-)
I love the big chunks of granite, that compose Fox Island, which can be reached only at low tide. You can see where the tide rises by the boundary line of seaweed. This beach is underwater twice per day.
There were several brave souls climbing around on Fox Island, but due to my bum arm, I couldn't make that trek today. There was lots of snow and ice in the crevices on the island.
I keep saying that I want to return to the beach, dog-free, to do some serious photography, but that never seems to happen. I really want to create a calendar of just sand and rocks as there are so many spectacular scenes on just this beach alone!
The sand pattern around this boulder reminded me of the skirt of a snail foot on an abalone;-)
We also walked out to the surf for a few minutes, but it was incredibly calm. I need to get over here when the surf is up. I love photographing the dynamics of wave action. But, today we had to be satisfied with the sound of gentle waves lapping upon the shore. I wanted to sit on a beach chair and snooze the afternoon away with my toes in the sand...
The rhythmic sound of horses walking down the beach snapped me out of a brief state of somnolence and grabbed my immediate attention. I have never seen horses like this before. They were absolutely stunning with all their feathers!
After doing a bit of research online, I think I have identified them as Gypsy Vanner horses. Wowee! These were just about the prettiest draft horses that I have ever laid eyes on. They are said to be the gentlest of horses, and the breed was created by gypsies in England who crossed Shire, Clydesdale, and Dales Pony breeds to create the perfect horse to pull caravans and for riding.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Check out the upcoming weekly weather

Wowee...look at the weather over my Winter vacation week! Amazing. The trees should be dripping sap. And, this morning I saw a raven with a twig in it's beak. Nesting season has begun! And, I'm thinking that a trip to the beach at low tide is in order;-)

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Snow Total thus far

The snow total thus far this season: 69"

Heavy, wet snowfall

Big, wet snowflakes fell overnight
We got at least 6.5 inches of new snow overnight. I say "at least 6.5 inches" because it was incredibly wet to start with and melted upon contact for several hours before starting to stick to the ground. 
Big flakes, small accumulation!
We really don't have much snow on the ground, as you can see from our backyard. Just enough to have fun with.
And, the early morning cleanup 'cause I have to get to school;-(

Monday, February 13, 2017

Snow Total thus far

The snow total thus far = 62.5"

Snow Storm 7 am till completion - SNOW DAY # 6

We've added another 3/4" since 6 am, and the 7 am measurement is 11.5" of snow.
The wind is also picking up to 17 mph. We won't get blizzard conditions here in Bowdoin.
Check out the shape of this storm...a true Nor'easter as it wraps around and pulls moisture off the ocean.. This is the predicted model for noontime today as it slowly moves out to sea. 

It took Drew almost 2.5 hours to snow throw the paths around the house and the driveway, as well as over to the neighbor's house. What a job it is to move this much snow. I am glad we didn't get two feet as some areas received.
Here is our wood shed and garage. The snow has blown mostly to the south part of the roof due to the wind. I haven't looked in the wood shed in awhile, but Drew says he just has one more stacked row of wood, along the back wall of the shed, to burn this winter. Of course we have more wood split and ready to use out back. We'll stay plenty warm for the rest of the season.

Snow Storm early morning

The time is 6 am and it is rather windy and snowy outside. It looks like the snow will be starting to lighten at around 10:30 am.
Drew shoveled a potty path for the hounds at 4am.
When he came in, I persuaded him to check the snow table measurement which showed 9" of snowfall.
I just went out at 6 am, and the snow measured 10.75". So snow is falling at 1.75" per hour.
Here we are getting pummeled by snow at 6 am. Hooray!

Drew can't wait to go snowshoeing again. Fresh powder is the best;-) Me...I am stuck in the house rehabbing my shoulder and am maximally bummed... At least I can hold our pocket camera and snap some one-handed photos.