Saturday, December 26, 2009

Saved by Snow

Hope everyone had an excellent Christmas! We had a good one, despite the weather. Christmas Eve we had sleet and freezing rain all day - it made a fairly thick icy crust on top of the 5 or so inches of snow, and left a dangerous glaze of ice on any area that was bare or packed down. My two mares got a brief turnout in a small paddock that could be reached without walking over too much ice. They had a nice roll and trotted around a bit, leaving craters with sharp icy edges in the snow. Dawn managed to slightly scrape one hind ankle on the sharp edges, but it wasn't bad and just the fur was scraped off. Noble had a hand walk in the barn aisle and was content.

Overnight the precipitation turned to all rain, and it rained hard - we got over 2.5 inches by the time it tapered off late Christmas afternoon. On top of the snow we already had, and with temperatures hovering right around freezing for most of the day, and then dropping into the 20sF overnight, it was a perfect ice scenario. The horses stayed in except for brief turnouts - the rain was very cold and heavy. More stall picking in the afternoon.

But overnight, it snowed, and it's been snowing all day so far - we're supposed to get another 5" or so before it stops. I like snow anyway - it's beautiful and the horses enjoy it - but this time I'm especially grateful since it's providing footing on top of the ice - in many places it's even bonding a bit to the ice surface. This means the horses were able to be turned out today - the furriest ones without blankets - it's neat to see how well-insulated they are as the snow piles up on their backs. I have PM bring-in and feeding duty this afternoon, and that sure beats picking 11 stalls!

11 comments:

  1. Glad to hear you had a nice Christmas and that you are happy it's snowing.
    Truthfully, I'll take the snow over the ice or the boot-sucking mud any day.

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  2. My mom and I have been wondering and worrying about how you are making out with the ice. The national weather was telling a bleak tale for your area and you were in our thoughts. Sounds like you are doing great! Snow is so pretty on the horse coats. We don't blanket at all so Pie and Sovey are furry happy monsters!
    My mom got the rain last night which took away every bit of the snow. Now she is contending with mud. Still slippery, but not so cold. She was able to get Pie and Sovey out at least. Who knows what mudpuppies will be in the pastures when she goes to retrieve them?!?
    You are mud-free and footing-safe white - hooray!

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  3. Glad itwas a good christmas for you, us too. Hope the weather is bearable for you.

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  4. I love snow! --- BOOO ICE!

    I have a dear horse friend that keeps kidding me about moving back to Ohio (we grew up together in the Dayon, Ohio area). NO WAY!

    We are digging out from our own blizzard but as usual within two days it should be pretty melted away.

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  5. Sounds like you were right to worry...what a recipe for dangerous footing! Snow is soooo much better--yeah!

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  6. Glad the snow is saving you. I hate the ice with a passion. So far here, it's been warmer and raining, so all the snow is washing away. If it all goes before it gets cold again, that would be a bonus. If not...mess. Looks good so far.

    The average, non horse person has no clue about how important good ground/footing can be. I guess they think we horsemen are a bit obsessed about it. *lol*

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  7. Never thought I'd say it but glad the snow came! We have perilous ice just now :(

    Great to hear your gang have managed a bit of turnout too, always a tricky balance in the conditions you have over there.

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  8. Glad you had a good Christmas and that you're happy with the snow. It was okay for the brief time it lasted here, but it can be gone now. It keeps refreezing at night. Mud & ice -- YUK.

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  9. Glad the snow came to improve the footing. Hope all are staying warm and comfy.

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  10. Good morning Kate...Weather is a crazy, unpredictable thing and it sure has control over our lives. A snow cushion sounds good. At least January is around the corner...it must be so boring for our horses. This morning, it is below freezing here...the rain has stopped and we don't have any snow. Mud is the order of the day.
    Happy New Year!

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  11. Kate-Enjoying the fairly decent weather here in South Texas, sans snow! Kudos to all you folks who do your chores and even ride in those negative degree temps. I grew up on a farm in Ohio so I am quite aware of what you are going through! Good thing you like the snow! I'm content to see it on TV or perhaps just have one little snowfall on Christmas day! HEE HEE! My dream is to move back to South Florida where I can actually scuba dive again in the winter!!
    Happy Holidays!
    Mindy

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