This March truly did roar into Western Nebraska like a lion. The winds at our house blew in at over 70 MPH during that first week! It wasn’t suppose to be that high, but our area gets hit really hard with the winds now that we no longer have foliage on our pine trees. Burnt pine trunks sticking out of the ground do not hold back the wind at all! There is no shelter belt anymore.
Nebraska wind has changed our landscape just as great as the fires had in 2012. The following couple of years we had a good amount of rain; and heavy rains add to the erosion where the burn was the most severe. And today, the winds have snapped the trees at the top, middle or bottom of the blackened snags. You need sure footing when out hiking now.
Our landscape has evolved dramatically since the Dawes Complex Fire of 2012. Every year I get out and hike the hills and canyons to see the changes. It can be a little treacherous on the old game trails, so finding new paths to walk can make it a challenge when trekking up and down the ravines and canyons. Thank heaven for sturdy shoes.
There is a silver lining to this change. Every year I am amazed at nature’s recovery. It is a cycle I am privileged to witness. The lush forage for the wildlife is full of nutrients and life.
So as we come to end of March, the temperatures rise and fall. This is also the time I get out to hunt for deer antler sheds, and check for new game trails.
It’s that time of year when I keep a sharp eye out for sign of our wild turkey. Where they have wintered and where they are heading to show off their feather finery.
It is that time of year when I can explore. I love it out here.