Overnight the sky dropped about four inches of little white ball bearings, and the wind was gusting over 30mph at dawn. My apologies to anyone who’s tired of weather talk, but there sure is a lot of it here, and it dominates the rhythms on the farm. The morning squalls made the border collies silly,
the sheep a bit slow to get moving down the hill to the bale feeder,
and gave the electric fence conniptions.
Electrified fencing is one of the primary contributors to my sleeping soundly at night — keeping Bravo and the sheep separate from the neighborhood coyotes — so I’m becoming very sensitized to hints that it might not be working optimally. This morning, as I was walking along the fenceline of the Winter Fortress, I heard the telltale popping sound of an electrical arc, one of the giveaways that the electrons are not flowing where I asked them to. (Parenthetical rant: How on earth do people with earbuds pumping loud music into their skulls know if their fence is malfunctioning? Or if a bear/bus/mean person is coming?) I slowed down and saw that the wire-wrapped bungie cord that carries juice across the gate was drooping low with a coating of ice, and arcing beautifully every time the wind pushed it into contact with the gate. I disconnected the bungie for now and made a note to take some slack out of it when I have a moment (ha!).