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  1. Winter cat logging

    For many years my brother the farmer resisted owning a cell phone. “Why would I want one?” he’d demand. “Someone’d just call me on it!” Once he got converted, however, he’s now gotten religion. When I was telling him about the blizzard we were having the other evening his reply was, “No pictures?” Sigh. This has, inevitably, changed my behavior. I find myself incessantly taking pictures of whatever I’m doing, particularly if I’m out in the woods and especially if it involves bulldozers. I always enjoyed working in the snow with a cat. Must date back to my misspent youth. Plowing snow was one of my favorite things. Logging in the snow wasn’t half bad either. The snow makes it easier running amongst the stumps and smoother over the rocks. The logs stay cleaner skidding along behind the cat gliding along the frozen skid trails up, out of the mud. A few days ago I tried to do some plowing after the bad snow storm but had to stop when the tracks packed full of ice. Neither of my cats are set up for snow, neither with snow sprockets or cut pads. The snow was too wet and was prone to pack into the rails of the tracks causing the tracks to tighten up like banjo strings. Today, conditions were very different. What the locals call ‘frozen granular.’ I couldn’t have packed a snowball if my life depended on it so the tracks on my dozer were safe. It was a perfect day for cat logging! The weather forecasters had threatened us with snow storms today. Instead we had bright sunshine so I skipped out on work and played in the woods instead. I decided it was the perfect day to drag the remains of some huge, lightning-strike oak logs up from their resting place at the bottom of the hill. It was much easier THIS time around. Since my brother has me trained to take pictures everywhere I go it occurred to me that I know another group that enjoys pictures of cats in action so I thought I’d offer THIS group some samples of old school winter skidding. Not much seen in this age of rubber tires and high speed grapple skidders. Have to post them one at a time due to size limits on this site. Enjoy!