Valentines Day Blizzard

February 17th, 2007

Filed under: Life and Everything Else

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On Wednesday, February 14th, 2007 snow started falling, hard. Sarah had class and I had a meeting that was not yet canceled, so we headed in to campus in the morning with several inches on the ground. A quick errand to the Agway for flowers at 10:00am required 15minutes of shoveling to free the car. By noon my meeting had been canceled as had Sarah’s afternoon classes, so for home we headed. After a futile attempt at freeing a colleague’s car from the snow, we giving him a ride home to Cornwall then worked our way slowly through the clogged streets of downtown Middlebury. At this point visibility was limited to about 50 feet and what traffic existed was crawling along. The Jetta did ok as long as we kept up our momentum to blast through drifts; if we had stopped we may not have be able to get going again without a lot of shoveling.

We knew we wouldn’t be able to get the car up to the house right away, so we stashed it in the Paris Farm supply parking lot across the road and scrambled over the snowbanks and up the driveway. Luckily Sarah had decided several days before to stay in and roast a duck for Valentines dinner instead of going out; a brilliant bit of luck now that travel was pretty much impossible. The snow kept falling harder and the winds were picking up so I got out the snowblower and started cutting a car-width path up the driveway to our parking area. By my 4th pass the first strip that I cleared was covered with two fresh inches of snow so I put the blower in high gear, cleaned off two tracks for the tires and ran to get the car.

The car by this point (2:30pm) was beginning to drift over. I could barely see Route 7 and had to stomp around looking for the exit from the parking lot onto the highway. Exit located I jumped in the car and with about zero visibility brought it around up to the house. I finished blowing the rest of the parking area and headed inside for the night.

The next morning we awoke to over 30 inches of new snow on the ground and an announcement that the college was closed. A lazy breakfast later we began three and a half hours of shoveling and snow blowing to clear all of the snow off of the driveway. The 10-hp Cub Cadet blower worked like a charm, though cutting through the 6-foot snow banks along the road still took a lot of effort: blow out a bit, cut down the overhang with the shovel, blow that away, lather, rinse, repeat.

As I finished the driveway I chatted with my neighbor, George, about the snow and the strength of roofs. I went up on our roof to check it out and was greeted with hip-dip drifts. I was under the mistaken impression that we had only 2×6″ rafters so I began the 2-hour project of shoveling off the roof. When it was done we were left with 6-7 foot-deep piles of snow surrounding the house. While the shoveling of the roof may have been unnecessary, the piles were much fun for jumping off the roof into!

Friday afternoon was the biweekly employee ski race at the college Snow Bowl. Conditions we epic. After our race runs, Mike S. and I spent the rest of the afternoon getting fresh tracks in the knee deep snow in the woods between Ross and Hadley. Wonderful fluff!

One Response to “Valentines Day Blizzard”

  1. JDon 21 Feb 2007 at 12:31 pm

    That is a lot of snow!

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