The travails of winter in the Canyon

Will Farris
Staff Writer


The official beginning of winter is Dec. 21, but we have had the cold, snow and rain for about two months now. Already weary of feeding the woodstove, I have to wonder when this season will end. One of the events that takes place when the mercury drops and the skies open up is a mouse infestation.

Oreo, the inside kitty cat, made this apparent when she woke me up in the middle of the night, whining because her toy had found a hidey hole. She is pretty good at catching mice, but reluctant to administer the final blow because they are just so much fun to play with. I rescued the critter and dispatched it amidst the protestations of brat cat.

Over the next few nights the mousetrap in the laundry room efficiently did in a couple more mice. Then one morning upon arising I found a present from Oreo placed on the threshold of the bedroom door — a dead mouse. Has the great feline hunter finally learned to destroy these destructive pests?

Not really, the mouse was still attached to the trap.

The winter has also brought rumblings of discontent from residents of Rush Creek Road. Snow removal has become a bit spotty down here. One snowfall, a light one, went by without even the hint of a plow. The latest storm that dumped four to six inches went untended until 9:30 p.m. Finally having finished my Christmas cards, I was in somewhat of a rush to get them mailed.

It was already Dec. 20 and if there was any hope of getting the cards to their recipients in time, they had to go out that afternoon. I waited until 3 p.m. and finally braved the snow and mailed the cards. On the way back home, the truck slipped off the road into a neighbor’s yard – four-wheel drive fully engaged.

I engaged the differential lock and managed to creep back to the road surface and make it into my driveway. Stormy Rittgers, the Twain postmaster, slipped off the road twice before she finally made it to her house. We are beginning to feel like Plumas County orphans down here. Rush Creek Road rises steeply from Highway 70, and gravity plays a large part in safely negotiating its many turns.

While I understand the importance of plowing out Quincy, we down in the ditch deserve a little attention too. We would like to see a plow come down before noon, then go back up and finish Quincy. A couple of us have made calls to the road department, and are waiting for the next snow event to see if service improves.

The early onset of cold weather has put the bears to bed. We haven’t had near the problems with these walking stomachs that we had in the past three years. But when spring does finally get here, they will wake up pretty hungry. I guess the time to deal with that will come in its time. No sense borrowing trouble from the future.


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