I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order.
John Burroughs

Friday, January 6, 2023

Waiting for the sun......

January 5, 2023

The world is totally white again this morning. All the tree branches are lined with sticky snow. The 'rain-slush-yuck' was falling heavily last night, as we could hear it plopping and shushing down on the roof over our heads. On trying to clear the back step this morning, it is a granular, icy mess. We'll need sun to clear the panels, as this won't come off easily.

The Christmas storm landed here, lots of snow, but not too much wind. Our son made it north mostly in front of the storm, but did hit some heavier going on the more northerly part of his route. Other guests from further away, stayed safely home, so it was just we three for a cozy, snowy Christmas.

The lovely Christmas snow on top of the December 16th dumping,

Morning of December 17

added up to close to two feet of snow, and made for a beautiful hike around, breaking trails on a sunny Christmas day. (header was taken Christmas Day). Sadly, the weather changed, rain and warmth came and the snow settled alarmingly, showing bare ground wherever we had labourously shoveled, ploughed and blew the snow away. The temperature has been hanging around the freezing mark, day time just above, and night time just below, for a lot longer than one would expect in January, and the long range does not show much change. The skies have been gray, the couple of sunny days at Christmas were the last full sun days we've had in this unusually long stretch of dreary weather. The moon, heading now toward a full Wolf Moon, has not been seen through the heavy cloud cover, although the diffused moonlight through the clouds, is enough light to see out across the clearing and discern objects and the bush edge at night. Last night I observed a large black thing sitting up on the tray feeder across the drive from the house, easily visible from the bed room window. After a few moments of motionlessness, it spread it's wings and drifted down and off to the south...a Barred owl. Over the Christmas period, on tramping out the trail to the compost bins one morning, I discovered this.

Although it was daylight when the photo was taken, I had to darken it considerably to show the details. Some hapless critter had been snacking in the compost bin, headed out across the field, where there is no cover...and the owl got it, it's track ending in big wing prints etched in the snow. We know we have a breeding pair around, as we hear them regularly, and a couple of years ago, on a walk through the swamp trail, we discovered two young owls hanging out in the trees there.

A Marten has been coming and going under the back step and porch. Probably it has discovered good hunting there, and that is OK with us. 

A female Pileated woodpecker has been showing up on the tray feeder where we have been putting cracked corn, and the Chickadees are a constant delight...(from earlier in December)

The trail cameras have been showing deer moving through, heading down to their winter yard. One buck got up close to a camera. He looks rather thin and bony, perhaps as a result of the rut.

The sun is apparently going to make an appearance on the weekend, and we are looking forward to that! 


  1. That's a lot of snow! So interesting about the owl impression. Snow is the only way the tale was told. We've had ducks disappear at night, and we think it might have been owls. They sometimes hang out in our oak trees.

    1. A layer of fresh snow is a message board for what goes on, and I love reading it. Finally, the sun appeared yesterday, and the full moon is shining in a clear sky. Lovely and crispy this morning at -13C. (9 F)

  2. Our weather has been almost a duplicate of yours. Yesterday we did have sun for much of the day and it was surprising how much it actually hurt our eyes! Outside we definitely needed sunglasses to tame the glare and even inside I was bothered by the bright flashes glancing off surfaces that have remained muted by so many gray days. Really nice videos of that buck getting up close and personal with your trail camera! That's a lovely shot you took in your woods on Christmas Day.

    1. I agree on the sunglasses! We definitely will need them today, as the sky is clear. Hope Mother Nature gets back on track with winter. We can walk all over on the crust, un-shod in snowshoes now...need more snow!

  3. My trail cameras aren't showing anything, other than the birds at the feeders.

    1. Deer are scarce up here now. Just fox, marten and fisher tracks, and not much on the cameras here either.