Cold Day “On Frozen Pond”

January 30th, 2007

Wow… on days like today it’s nice to be inside.  Mostly sunny, but awoke to 8 F/ -13 C.  Electricity was off again last night… about 10:00 pm and “psss…zi…” a couple flashes and “poof!” back in the dark.    Built a roaring fire in the stove for the radiation heat, and being curious I put on the warm clothes and went for a hike to check the power lines around the property.  Hiked up to the pasture and down the lines by the road to below the dam, and all was well.  The half-moon came and went as the clouds raced by lending an erie fade of light and dark as the trees swayed.  I stood on the hill above the house listening to the wind and watching the shapes and hues of the landscape.  Lots of memories… standing there in peace, alone… but part of everything.   It was refreshing… yet late.  Finally asleep- in the morning the power was back on thankfully.  The wind may have blown a tree limb on a power line nearby after the ice storm this month. Young one was sick today… first time this school year and since I can’t remember when.  He really wanted to go… but had a fever.  The animals thought it was cold too… but for a while the sun was out on the south side, and they curled up against the house. The pond is frozen once again!  Amazing how it thaws for some time, then freezes again, and the reflections and light work their magic. 

Double Ice and Trees

The stump at the pond edge (the young one loves to play on it!) was from a tall oak with a rope swing that hung for over 16 years. The tree was on the decline, and last year’s drought was too much.  I cut it down (and still need to finish “bucking” the log) and counted the rings… the tree was over 70 years old.  I estimate the average age of the mature trees at Fox Haven to be 75-125 years old… 

Snowmelt on the Pond

January 22nd, 2007

It did snow over the weekend… not much, but enough to appreciate winter instead of simply being cold!  Of course the boy’s excitement eclipsed that of his parents, and he had a chance to play.  The temperatures were actually quite warm, hovering right above freezing during the day, and the pond ice began to melt (it has only been frozen for a week, since the last round of cold temps). 

The pond is finally at maximum water level… last year’s drought took it 5 feet down, and it didn’t start to fill back up until mid December. But it’s interesting to see the ice melting, and for the life of me I can’t figure out why a few holes appear in the ice at different locations around the pond.  Anyone know?  They appear first as small circles, almost like there are warmer upwelling currents or some gentle temperature difference in the water at that particular spot. Who knows where that would come from.  A small spring perhaps? No objects were thrown, and no tree debris fell there, it just “happens.”  Then cracks spider out from the holes as you can see below. 

Pond Snow Melting

Very strange, but my curiosity desires a scientific explanation… someone please render a few hypotheses! Ah well, the mysteries of nature.  If the ice were really frozen the last few weeks we would try a little ice fishing… but that doesn’t happen very often in Missouri!  Not cold enough for long enough… and that’s probably a good thing. :)

New Winter Day

January 16th, 2007

Ah… the electricity came back on late last night. Convenience is a wonderful thing.  A new day dawns… I know it’s cold when steam rises from the pond in winter. Temperature 7 F/ -14C.

Winter Pond

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