This is no action photo -- it's how badly the snow clumped on the shovel while I was doing my part to keep the path clear.
See the two identical grey boxes sitting against the red wall behind me? The one on the left holds the battery/inverter setup Lisa built for her father's home office. Essentially it puts all of his computers and ham radio gear on a large UPS. Remember this box; I'll be talking about it again later. (The other box is empty for now but will be put to use in the future.)
Before the storm arrived, this is what the view from Lisa's father's home office looked like. That is of course Lisa's Big Orange Van parked out back of the garage.
After two or three days of snow with no warm spells or rain -- which is what ordinarily happens here -- the back yard looked like this.
Lisa and I have given her father a couple of bird feeders that she installed outside his home office so he can watch the birds, and we've been keeping the feeders filled. The birds certainly seem to appreciate it, except when I go outside and disturb their meals.
This was how things looked after the first day of the storm. Lisa shoveled the path you see here. I was amazed when she did so, and didn't realize how important it was going to be to keep it easy for us to get from one side of the property to the other without having to slog through up to 40 cm of snow.
Incidentally, this photo was shot from underneath the pine tree that later dropped a bunch of branches onto the spot where Lisa was standing when she took the photo. We've diverted the path around the fallen branches because they're too heavy to drag away until we can get out there and saw them into smaller pieces. At least some of them will be useful as firewood eventually.
As the snow continued to fall, I went out and pitched in to both keep the path clear and widen it a bit so that we could get the rolling cart we use to move heavy objects (like spare propane bottles) around the property.
Can you tell that this isn't my usual sort of activity? My back certainly told me so that evening.
Here's what one of the other trees on the property looked like after a couple of days of snow and occasional freezing rain. Normally you have to pay extra for flocking like this.
The path from the trailer to Lisa's father's house leads through this tunnel of frozen trees.
The trailer sits relatively dry under the latest version of the pipe-and-plastic shelter Lisa built. This one has a much more steeply-pitched roof that sheds water and snow better than the previous one. When the snow stopped and the sun came out today, the huge redwood tree that looms over us began shedding water and large clumps of snow. In storms like this, we always look nervously at the many branches above us and hope that none of them come crashing through the roof.
Getting these photos posted was delayed for quite a while due to power problems here. Remember the battery box/inverter I mentioned earlier? The ground-fault circuit tripped sometime today (or possibly yesterday when the power glitched badly) and we didn't realize it until the batteries drained and the power died. (There may have been a way to know something was wrong inside the house, but I don't know what it is and Lisa's father didn't notice -- Lisa probably knows.) After poking around the inverter box for a while, we found the tripped breaker and reset it, so utility power began charging the batteries and powering the office again. The office circuits include the DSL modem, so once it rebooted, we were set to go again. It's annoying to have drained the batteries, however, in circumstances like this where we really want full batteries in case we lose utility power.