Sunday, September 13, 2009

Going On Our Fourth Winter

Yukon and I looked at the calendar today and realized that come December we will have been in Alaska four years. Wow. Four winters in the Last Frontier, and today we celebrated by heading outside to prepare.

Non-Winter has been so delightful this year I almost hesitate to call it such; right up until yesterday we had mild temperatures, mostly blue-ish skies, and lovely leaves turning bright colors.

But yesterday we woke up to clouds, rain, and chilly temps that had me scrambling for raingear, mittens, and hats as we traveled to Whittier for a sort-of attempt at fishing in a kids' salmon derby. More on that later.

This afternoon our friends invited us to visit the Fort Richardson woodlot for some preparatory wood cutting before the weather turns bitter. We packed up kid, tools, nephew and girlfriend, and headed out. The rain thankfully stopped when we arrived and afforded us the occasional view of surrounding mountains.

Bear and his Best Girlie had a ball prowling around in the brush and sliding down muddy hillsides. I eventually got the lot of them (four kids in all) to help me pile slash for small animal habitat (Grandpa would be so proud), and we had a contest to see who could make the tallest winter shelter for critters.

The wood was stacked under the back deck to season until next winter, as I had moved all of last year's wood into the shed for use in the next few months. We arrived home, started the inagural fire in the woodstove, and proceeded to settle in as we have the last three years, for winter's first blow.

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