Off the Grid  Retirement at our remote log cabin in Colorado

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

This is Getting Scary

Posted by: Rick

It is official. We are "snowed in". More than ever.

Keeping the driveway open is a futile effort right now.

I'd been able to keep the driveway open and create a road to our neighbor's where we could work together to get into town if needed. But, after many days in a row of heavy snow, blowing wind, with a little rain and sleet sprinkled in, there is no way we can get out of our driveway with the Expedition.

The Expedition is going nowhere.

There is anywhere from 6" to 24" of snow, some of it very heavy, in the driveway. I'll be able to clear it with a combination of the snow plow, a shovel, a pick axe, and the snow blower. But, not until it stops snowing!

The meadow.

It is a constant effort to keep a path open to the storage shed. The dogs just go out, do their business near the cabin, then want back in. Bella gets "castinets" in between her toes and goes "click, click, click" when she comes inside. Destin's curly coat captures every flake of snow and when we try to dry it the snow just rolls up into little snowballs. Hailey, bless her heart, slogs through the deep snow to do her thing, then "runs" back for a treat, completely coated in snow with her black eyes peeking out.

The prediction for today was that we'd get one inch of snow. I'm sure we are approaching one foot instead.

The storage shed is getting harder to find. There is about 4 feet of snow behind it.

Even our emergency exit strategy is buried in snow. Still the Ranger would fire right up and with the tracks would easily get us out of here. The plan is to take the Ranger on Friday and see just how big a chore it will be to attempt a trip into town on Saturday. If not Saturday, then maybe Monday or Tuesday. (It is supposed to snow again on Sunday.)

Our only hope!

The good news is that our summer preparations and provisioning are paying off. We have plenty of wood and food. It has been 10 days since we were able to get out to check our mail and run into town. It may be another 5 or 6 before we are successful. But, we are prepared. 

The bad news is the exception to our provisioning plans. We did not stockpile enough wine. We have, maybe, 4 or 5 days of wine left at our current rates of consumption!

Seriously, this is a bit scary. It is white everywhere. You cannot see the roads to navigate toward town. We'd have to go 6 or 7 miles before any hope of a plowed road, and there is  no way we could do it in either truck right now The wind howls, even causing the cabin to shake sometimes. In an emergency, we'd be screwed. (Is running out of wine an emergency?)


It’s looking like this will be a memorable winter in the Colorado mountains for sure! Glad you are well provisioned and staying warm! I don’t think running out of wine quite rises to the threshold of emergency smile Unless of course you get several more feet of snow.

I definitely think that running out of wine is an emergency!  What were you thinking?  You need a 1200-bottle wine cellar like mine!

Oh yes. Running out of wine is indeed an emergency!

Oh no!  You can’t run out of wine!!  LOL!  Hang in there.  According to the weather channel just snow showers on Sunday, but no other snow in the forecast for the next 5 or 6 days??  Hopefully that will give you enough time to get some snow cleared away and get into town.

Yes, I think it qualifies as an emergency to run out of wine!  The exception is if you have plenty of beer and tequila

Can you get wine delivered? LOL

I imagine this will become much more routine for both of you, but the first time being so deeply snowed in must be a bit scary. The scary thing, to me, is the idea of having to find a road beneath all that snow. It would be so easy to go off course, though I guess with GPS you’d be able to keep an eye on your position and not go too wrong. Is the Ranger a snowmobile? (Having grown up in Florida I wouldn’t know a snowmobile if I saw one.)

Steve, the Ranger is the vehicle shown in the last photo. It is not a snowmobile, but a UTV that has tracks instead of wheels (for winter only). A snowmobile has only one track that runs the length of the vehicle and seats people front & back rather than side-by-side. So, it is narrower.

You are right that it is scary to not know where the road is exactly. Especially where there are deep ditches to either side that have filled with snow. Some people up here have recorded the track on a GPS and then use that to stay on the roads when covered with snow. I need to look into doing that.

Of course running out of wine is an emergency!!!! I bet you guys won’t this happen again. Stay safe.

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