Monday, November 11, 2013
Here comes the cold.
It's been chilly, but we are going to get some serious cold weather here for the next couple of days. It will probably get in the low teens. The weather forecast says mid twenties, but they base that on temps at the airfield, which is a lot lower in elevation than my place. One of the things about being on a mountain top is the fact that you get much colder air than the lower elevations.
I'm well set up for cold weather, though. Log is a great insulator, and my house is sealed up pretty well. All of the windows are double paned. They are all covered with heavy plastic sheeting now, and the large windows have plywood "shutters' which I've put in place on top of the plastic.
The animals all have warm quarters, so the cold won't be too bad for them. All of the outside faucets are covered with heavy Styrofoam boots, and those are wrapped in plastic. The outbuildings are all battened down, and have heat running in the climate controlled spaces.
I got my humidifiers out and have them going. Without them, the humidity in the buildings would get down to below 14% and my gauges would quit registering. I try to keep the humidity between 50% and 55% in the main house and just slightly lower in the outbuildings. That keeps the supplies and equipment in good shape. It also keeps a healthy level for myself and the ferrets. Like people, ferrets get dry skin if the humidity gets too low.
All the batteries in my vehicles have been tested within the last month, and replaced with new batteries when necessary.
I made sure the pump housing is tight and that the insulation is in place.
My cold weather gear is out of the closet and when I go outside, I'll put it on. There's always a temptation, if you just have some quick thing like pouring boiling water into the animal watering troughs, to just run out in your shirt sleeves. That's really stupid, because the change from the warm indoors, to the freezing outside air, and then back into the warm indoors is a real shock to your system. I can't think of a worse place to have a heart attack than outside, in the low teens, wearing a t shirt and jeans.
I doubt I'll be leaving the place for the next couple of days. There are wet leaves on the jeep trail. They'll freeze into a solid sheet, and there are places on that trail where sliding can take you over and down. I have everything I need though so I shouldn't find any compelling reason to leave the place. We'll see how it goes.
The first real cold snap is like taking a ship out for a shakedown cruise. Everything looks like it ought to work but you can get some surprises, and they'll crop up here in the next two days if anything has been missed. However, after decades of living here, my procedures are actually pretty good and I follow them religiously.