Early winter in North Dakota

Well looks like children in North Dakota will be trick or treating in their snowsuits again this year. The state is getting inundated with snow and it is far from the official start of winter.

I remember when I was young and we would wake up early for school and it was snowing and blowing outside. We would immediately tune the radio into the local station to see if school was going to be cancelled.

Then when our school cancellation was announced we would get dressed up in our winter gear and play outside.

It always seemed like the sheep would start lambing during early blizzards. Sometimes we would end up with 10 to 15 lambs in our house because it was so wet and cold outside.

Although blizzards were welcomed when I was in school, winter storms were no fun when I had to get to work or the grocery store or anywhere for that matter.

As I was going through Facebook this morning (Friday) my friends in North Dakota were posting photos of blowing snow, lawn furniture covered in snow, tree and power pole damage and vehicles in ditches. Others are just wondering it the University of North Dakota hockey game is still going to be played in Grand Forks on Friday night.

The Red River Valley, which is in eastern North Dakota, has been told to expect 1 to 3 feet of snow.

To make matters worse the Red River is out of its banks. Flood stage is 28 feet and the river is about 33 ½ feet. So along with the blizzard warning there are also flood warnings.

My heart goes out to the farmers in those areas because there are still potatoes, sugar beets, wheat, edible beans, sunflowers and corn waiting to be harvested.

My friend Ann Bailey, who is a reporter for the Grand Forks Herald, wrote that on Oct. 6, only 45 percent of the potato crop had been harvested.

“A late, wet spring, combined with as much as 10 inches of rain during the past month has hampered the harvest of potatoes — and every other crop in northeast North Dakota and northwest Minnesota,” she wrote.

Then there are the livestock producers who have to tend their herds. Hopefully the heads up they got from the weather service helped them prepare. ❖