Blizzard and Deep Cold
Winter snows are the major news of the day all up and down the Shady Mountain Range. Cold and heavy snow have interrupted or totally stopped traffic throughout the region. Holiday shopping is down as road crews work around the clock to clear roads and highways. State plows and road graders are working overtime to get traffic moving again. Ranger Bill Jefferson has again pulled out his two Big Brute plows to assist city and state plows. The state's two Little Brute plows are currently clearing expressways in Canyon and Knotty Pine counties.
This current blizzard and cold have effectively ended any remaining corn harvest for 2009. Many area farmers lost significant portions of their corn crops to the late harvest and snows. The Canyon County Farm Bureau reports that corn crops lost to this snow have turned profits for some farmers into losses. Soy harvest was at least 99% complete before the storm.
Ski Resorts Open
Ski resorts such as the Big Six Lodges and Mile High Ski Lodge are enjoying the blessings of snow. Attendance at these and other area ski lifts and lodges is up with the snow. College students on break have flocked to the Knotty Pine area to ski. The numbers of Christmas vacationers is also expected to be up 25 to 50% based on reservations made in recent days.
(Blessings of Snow [RB066] and Skiers in the Sky [RB058] should be on our play list early in 2010.)
Visitor to Ranger HQ
Ranger Bill Jefferson and his men had an unexpected visitor to Ranger HQ in Pig Pine National Forest. Ranger Bill is in charge of all building, logging, and mining permits in and around the forest. Nationally known and respected nature writer and photographer Abraham Thorn applied for a building permit for a home near the Big Six Lodges. Mr. Thorn is a Inuit Indian from northern Canada along the Arctic Circle.
Mr. Thorn told Ranger Bill he was moving south to the Knotty Pine region for the warmer weather. Actually Mr. Thorn is here to live and study the wild life of the Shady Mountains.
Ranger Bill granted Mr. Thorn's permit. Construction is expected to begin when snows clear and temperatures rise above freezing.