A Month Into The New year

We are over a month into the new year – the solar new year, that is. I complained in the Winter Solstice post about the mildness and gloom of December; but the very eve of the solstice, it began to change.

Sun in my window!

window view

The snow was not deep, and what there was was very icy. My neighbour was away, and I walked down most days to feed the cat. The meadow en route to her house had flooded. At first it was fun as the family could skate on their own ice rink. But then the water spread and spread. It has infiltrated beneath the trailers and almost to the bottom of the hill to my place. It is not stable ice – always there is new water oozing up. The colder the temperature, the more it oozes.

flooded field

There is no rhyme or reason to this for at the lower end, the land slopes steeply to the creek. The slope is a frozen waterfall. We have had two very wet summers, and possibly the beaver dams have something to do with it, although all the dams are higher up the creek. The influx of new water makes fantastic ice flowers.

flowers of ice

All winter, I have been growing sprouts with a vengeance. Kale, collards, broccoli, and bok choi. A very welcome addition to the diet when fresh vegetables are so hard to get.

microgreens

Although the weather had improved a little, we still got fog in the morning.

sunrise fog

Foggy mornings brought hoarfrost.

It was much thicker by the river.

And we started to get sunsets. Note the position of the sun – taken just about on the shortest day in this picture.

It was not long before the sunset point began to move. (The bright gold puffs on Finger Peak are blowing snow.)

moving sunset
sunset red

Then we got a dramatic sunrise.

dramatic sunrise

Followed by just enough snow to freshen things up.

Afternoons verged on thawing. Ice drops formed on the trees.

The old moon set – a rare morning without mist.

last of moon.

The morning light shone on the mountains.

morning light

One morning, I had a visitor.

shy fox

He seemed to like the sunflower seeds on the feeder. He came around several times. I threw some bones and dogwood out but my dog and the birds ate the kibble; however, the bones (which Harry is not interested in) disappeared.

Hard to realize they are really skinny beneath all that fur!

what big ears you've got

We had a couple more snowfalls and I was thinking of ploughing, but left it too late. The next “small” fall was about 10 cm, which made about 25cm altogether. It was pretty had work, and I and my neighbour, Jade, took 3 days to plough our roads. Unfortunately my machine won’t do the 3 km we share with out neighbour and that part has become very difficult to drive. Jade must get her kids to the school but on Highway 20 every day.

By mid January, the days were noticeably longer. Pretty evening light graced my wetland.

red willow

And towards the southwest.

The sunrise and set points are now racing along the horizon. (The solstice tree is the one on the right.)

And in the west it has passed Finger Peak.

Finger Peak gold.

One Woman's Life In The Wilderness