Gossamer Tapestry

Reflections on conservation, butterflies, and ecology in the nation's heartland

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Snowy Fen



Friday night and Saturday, we got about a foot of snow. The timing was pretty good on this one for several reasons. It didn't mess up my commute. Although it was snowing heavily by the time I went home Friday night, there was almost no traffic. Saturday, we stayed pretty close to home all day, and got to shovel out at our leisure. Mid week, it's expected to plunge into the deep freeze with lows south of -10°F. The thick blanket of snow will provide nice insulation for my garden. Today we went to the Fen for some winter photography.




The picture above demonstates one of the interesting fen features. The springs emerge at a constant 53°F year round. No matter how cold it gets, the areas right around the springs don't freeze.




By the time we left, we were getting peeks at the sun. Florida is in 2 weeks and 4 days!

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14 Comments:

At 00:20, Blogger SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Beautiful, if cold, pictures Doug. I can see you are looking forward to your trip. :) This ideal weather for staying inside and playing cards, drinking hot chocolate and maybe a piece of warm apple pie with cream. :)

 
At 03:56, Blogger Dr. Know said...

These are the kinds of perfect picture postcard shots that make me glad to live in the South. Now if I could only come up with another reason...

 
At 08:47, Anonymous Heather said...

We have a famous spring nearby and it always fascinates me in summer how it can stay the exact same temp. My feet turn blue when I try to stand in it too long. As for the insulation on the garden, it's nice that you can find a positive reasons for snow. I was kind of pissed, we didn't get anything worthwhile. ;(

 
At 08:56, Blogger Gallicissa said...

Nice captures. It is 30C here!

 
At 09:50, Blogger Dave Coulter said...

Excellent (and sunny!) shots! I need to finally visit your fen in
'09...

 
At 13:48, Blogger Doug Taron said...

Joan- Thanks. A lot of the weekend was spent indoors.

Dr. Know- Welcome back. Glad to live in the South? Those pictures were nothing, weather-wise. On the other hand, the blizzard warning for tonight, or perhaps the subzero highs predicted for Thursday sound truly unpleasant.

Heather- I have always reasoned that spring water flows at a fairly constant temperature because the below-ground rock that the water flows through stays at just about the same temperature year round.

Amila- On Thursday, the high temperature here is not predicted to exceed -20°C.

Dave- I'd be more than happy to show you around some time.

 
At 20:06, Blogger Ur-spo said...

Do the skinny dippers stay year round too?

 
At 22:23, Blogger rodger said...

Beautiful photos Doug!

I'm glad you were able to shovel out slowly. Our recent freak storm taught me a lot about shoveling. It took almost two hours to shovel the driveway and that was a good workout. I wouldn't want to have to do it daily.

As grey as it is in the PNW, it beats shoveling snow!

 
At 13:04, Blogger robin andrea said...

It is beautiful there, doug. There's something about a landscape in snow, all the edges are softened. Very nice. I am surprised by the constant temperature of the springs there. I bet the local fauna appreciate that as well.

 
At 14:46, Anonymous Mark H said...

I feel like I'm beginning to "know" the Fen. . . . .can't wait for your annual spring cleanup! In the meantime, you're in a deep freeze this week....aargh! I guess California can't come quick enough when it's 0 outside.

 
At 07:29, Blogger Dr. Know said...

Thanks! I've seen the weather predictions. Being a shorts and T-shirt kinda guy, anything below 40 and I'm outta there. Thanksgiving '86 was the last time I got anywhere near Chicago past ealy fall. Brrr...

But it does make for some scenic photos - as long as I'm not the one taking them.

 
At 15:56, Blogger Dee said...

Beautiful pictures! I love the one that seems to be a fallen tree covered with snow.

 
At 17:47, Blogger Kathiesbirds said...

Lovely winter snow scenes, Doug. Why is it that snow is so serene? I hope Florida will warm back up by the time you get there. It should be fairly cold there tomorrow!

 
At 21:04, Blogger Doug Taron said...

Spo- It's been a few years since we have had skinny dippers.

Rodger- Now we're just freezing various parts of our anatomies off.

Robin- Surprisingly, there is not a lot of evidence of particular attention to the springs in winter by the local fauna. For example, we don't see a concentration of tracks in the snow around them.

Mark- The Freeze is here. It's -11 with a -31 wind chill right now.

Doc- Right now it's not just anything below 40, it's something approaching 40 below (at least with the wind chill factored in).

Dee- Welcome to the Tapestry. Thanks, and yes that is a couple of fallen trees. Curiously, the one on the right is fallen but still very much alive.

Kathie- Thanks. We leave for Florida two weeks from tonight, so there's plenty of time for it to warm up there.

 

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