The Gentle Descent of…Tons of Snow

Sandy October Blizzard 2013 Final

Mid-storm shoveling


The rain changed over to snow sometime October 3, 2013 and didn’t stop until October 5th.  When it did, some areas of the Black Hills were buried in up to 55″ of snow; that, my friends, is over four FEET of snow!  Winter Storm Atlas left 40,000 heads of cattle dead, and tens of thousands of people without power, heat, or the ability to travel for days.


Sandy October Blizzard 2013 (7)

When it finally stopped.


The first night, we listened to the trees dying an agonizing death.  Big trees, some of them a foot in diameter were snapping in half.  If even one had fallen on the house, we would have been in very serious trouble. When dawn finally rolled around, we saw dozens of our beautiful trees were destroyed. Before the storm, we had not been able to see the neighbors below us or the main road to town; now, both were glaringly visible – Atlas had stripped us of our privacy.

We were without power for about three days.  It was cold and uncomfortable but not unbearable.  We had candles and flashlights, which allowed us to spend a little time after it was dark, to play cards or board games but quite frankly, being under the covers and sleeping, waiting for it all to be over with, was the best way to pass time.

When the snow finally stopped, we began to shovel.  Slowly, and in stages because after the initial onslaught, it began to warm up and the snow got heavier and heavier by the hour.  I believe it was five days from the beginning of the storm before we saw plows descend upon the neighborhood.  People were out in their driveways, not quite as celebratory as those lining the streets of Paris in 1944 but pretty darned happy nonetheless.

We have done some preparations since that storm.  There is a gas stove and range in the kitchen and a freestanding gas stove for heat in the downstairs.  I suppose, as long as we can make coffee to drink and huddle around the stove, we’ll weather (yes, pun intended) whatever the gods, mythological or otherwise, throw at us.


Weekly Photo Challenge: Descent


28 thoughts on “The Gentle Descent of…Tons of Snow

  1. Pingback: 11-3-14 I’m Stooping Again (Weekly Photo Challenge) | The Quotidian Hudson

  2. Nice pictures BUT this does not make me want to be up north or anywhere that I’d have to deal with that much snow. Winter sports are fun and I love it when there’s snow on the ground and the sun shines, BUT I do not want to be where it causes inconveniences or hardships. Hope this winter isn’t too bad for anyone.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh, too much snow! (Another reason I’m glad not to be in New York anymore, and we got big storms there but this bad). I’m sorry you lost the trees. The gas stove will make all the difference next time, but I hope next time it’s far less.


  4. Wonderful writing….. beautiful piece…. excuse this response to your uncomfortable time. It sounds terrible… dying trees gone, the cold, trying to keep warm… but your description is incredible. ( Photos are wonderful too!)


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