My View From The Country

This Winter Is Starting To Be Too Long

There comes a point in every winter where the beauty of freshly fallen snow dissipates, and you want to wish it away.

This has been a long winter for many producers, providing some bitter cold weather and copious amounts of snow. Meanwhile, California is mired in one of its worst droughts. However, there are few producers anywhere who are complaining about receiving the moisture – in any form.

Nonetheless, there comes a point in every winter where the beauty of freshly fallen snow dissipates, and you want to wish it away. My conversations with producers indicate that point has arrived for many of them. It sure has for me.

I’m not sure if it was the -40 wind chill last night, the frozen waterer, the tractor that wouldn’t start, or the simple things like steamed-up glasses, but when I look out across freshly fallen snow, I am pretty much done with appreciating the beauty of the whole winter experience. Sadly, if Phil the ground hog is correct in his unscientific prognostication, we have some more winter to go.


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Of course, when I get this way, all I have to think of is our friends in South Dakota who were hammered by that freak October blizzard. That slaps some perspective back in me. Still, I’m longing for green grass and cool spring mornings. Winter can be peaceful and glistening snow can be beautiful, but I have always preferred moisture in the form of falling rain.

Perhaps it is the tighter numbers, improving moisture conditions or corn becoming competitive once again from a cost standpoint, but winter feed resources does not appear to be a problem for once. Of course, record prices have taken a little of the sting out the blustery winds.

I can’t help but wish that I had been in Nashville this week with all the other cattlemen. After all, I can be assured of warmth and no snow in the Gaylord Opryland hotel.


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Discuss this Blog Entry 2

Doug (not verified)
on Feb 7, 2014

I can't say that I am sick of winter, but I have downgraded my feelings from I love winter to I like winter. I am finding a cold winter is so much easier than the wet winters we have had recently in Michigan. You can shovel snow, you can't shovel slop. My cows are doing better in a dry environment, even that it is cold. I did have to quit feeding balage because the bales are one big block of ice.

on Feb 11, 2014

I can agree with your sentiments....I was having a hard time staying positive when we were hit with harsh winter weather last weekend as well. But it's like my husband Clint says - "If it were easy, everyone would be a rancher." We're wishing you warmer weather and less eventful days from out here in Oregon. :)

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What's My View From The Country?

As a fulltime rancher, opinion contributor Troy Marshall brings a unique perspective on how consumer and political trends affect livestock production.


Troy Marshall

Troy Marshall is a multi-generational rancher who grew up in Wheatland, WY, and obtained an Equine Science/Animal Science degree from Colorado State University where he competed on both the livestock...

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