Minnesota Farmer

Road reporter

This morning the roads were covered with about one inch of new snow and slippery in spots.  No wind, but rising temperatures were making for messy travel.100_0762

I’ve been stopped several times this past winter by people who have been thankful for my morning road reports from my southwest Minnesota bus route on Facebook.  When you hit the road by 6:30 and are back in town by 8, you get a good look at morning roads.  Mostly they are people who live here and want to know what is outside their door, but I have also talked to people who are away and traveling.  They like to know how things are going back home.

Road conditions now as spring is approaching are not as critical.  The winter prairie winds here make travel miserable at times in winter as it blows the snow and it can make travel conditions treacherous.  Now our only worry is a late season dump of wet snow that makes for slippery roads.  Spring travel is much easier.

I could also give you wildlife reports from my dawn travels.  For instance this morning I saw 20 deer and 2 pheasant roosters.  images

The deer are really starting to move now that winter is losing its grip.  For a while there was no movement, but now they are looking for new foraging spots and are moving from trees to fields and back again.  It’s fun to see where they have been after new snow.  I would put deer numbers at a stable level, but down from about 10 years ago.images-2

The pheasants have been absent most of the winter, and I know it has been a hard winter for them.  The fact that I have seen no hens, and very few roosters, has been distressing.  Last summers late snow had already cut into pheasant numbers.  Now ice, heavy snows and wicked winds may have further pushed down numbers.  I would place pheasant numbers at a very low level now.

There is a lot to see on my morning bus route, including some of the best sunrises in the world.  I’ve been glad to hear that people are checking in on me, perhaps you have been also.



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