Journal for January 2, 2018

The end of the old year, and the beginning of this new year have been beautiful, but very cold.  Nights and mornings have been well below 0° F.  Finally, today, it’s supposed to reach +11° F during the day.   A heatwave!

Before the cold came we were able to finish up a couple of our fall projects.

Here are a few views of Twisted Oak Savanna – our newly cleared remnant savanna.

The newest part of the savanna


Looking back into the older cleared area


This is the hill above the house.  We cut lots of the smaller trees, and have started pulling them off the hill.  We can’t drive the tractor there, so we have to pull the slash down by hand.  We got some of it done, but the rest will have to wait until there’s less snow (so we don’t slip on the hill as we’re working), and warmer weather.  There are still lots of small trees to cut farther up the hill – they may wait until next fall.


A friend who likes to cut trees came over and did a little more work for us – this photo shows the trees I marked for cutting next to Hidden Oaks Meadow – green for “cut”, and pink for “don’t cut”.  (To really see the colored tape, you need to click on the photo so you can see the larger version.)


This is after he finished cutting.


And after we did some cleanup work – there’s still more cleanup to do once it gets a little warmer.


We’ve gotten a little more snow – all in tiny snowstorms of an inch or less at a time.


Mike was excited to try the new plow that we bought for the EV.  It does a great job of plowing the driveway – and the EV starts even when it’s cold, and it runs on sunshine!


The newly plowed driveway


We even plowed our trails through the woods.  (This photo was actually taken as we were plowing, so the path in front of us wasn’t plowed yet. )


Bobcats and coyotes have been out in the cold.






Here are more wintry prairie scenes….

A wetland sunset


Winter prairie plants


Buffalo Ridge Prairie


Buffalo Ridge Prairie


Indian Grass Point


Indian Grass Point


The Knife Edge Point


Buffalo Ridge and Western Prairie sunset


Narrows Prairie sunset


Last day of the old year


The new year begins!