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Advisor

Remember 41 years ago?

April 9, 1973 snow storm. http://www.iawx.net/2013/04/05/historical-wx-april-blizzard-of-1973/

That was the year I started farming.  What made this storm "the one to remember" was the very high winds while heavy wet snow was falling (50 to 60 MPH) .  We where snowed in for 2 days here in central Iowa.  Lost  two sets of cow calves.  We did get the corn planted and it was a good harvest.

Some heavy snow could fall late this week end up north.  70's here today.  Things starting to happen in the fields.

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Veteran Contributor

Re: Remember 41 years ago?

I remember that as I was a senior in highschool. No field work being done here north of Waverly-talked to a tiler and he said there was to much frost in the ground to even tile.

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Senior Contributor

Re: Remember 41 years ago?

The worst April snow I can remember, and I don't remember it all that well, would have been in April of 1983.   My dad says it started on April 13th with rain, that turned to about a foot of wet snow, with a wind.  
About all I can remember about it, was walking with dad, 'helping' him dig the electric fence wire out of drifts, so the drifts wouldn't break it, and let the cows get out.   I can remember doing this, while wearing a sweatshirt, and Dad says in a day or two, it was in the high 70s or low 80s, with a stiff South wind, and the snow was melting fast, with rivers of water everywhere.

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Honored Advisor

Re: Remember 41 years ago?

 

http://www.crh.noaa.gov/mkx/?n=biggestsnowstorms-us

 

I was 7 --------------- We were on the edge of number 4 on this noaa list in 1956,  but in 1957 we were in the heart of number 5.

 

In a house with a tall double tree row on the west and north we were covered up.  We had gas for heat. A short ladder in the basement and a scoop shovel, dad had went for when the rain turned to snow before the wind hit.  He dug and melted air shafts up through the snow at two windows and the back door after he unhinged the screen door.  The third day the wind backed off and the snow stopped---hit on friday nite and ended on tuesday early---  The wind had packed the snow so hard he could walk from the roof of the house to the yard light pole, sticking three feet above the drifts, and to the shop and dig his way in.

He immediately eyed a problem he was looking for and with the help of a portable generator/welder, built some pipe supports, positioned them in the beds of two small grain trucks parked in the shop.  Then lifted the hydraulic beds on them to support rafters of the old wood frame shop.  That was early tuesday.  In a couple of days he took me out with him to check the shop and see the tires on the trucks looked flat but were not -----  and in his wonderful way of handling adversity,  held me up on the tallest drift to see how beautiful the snow was in the afternoon sun. ----- We had only lived in this rented place 4 months and it was his first opportunity to farm for himself----- under those drifts were two old tractors and a combine, a nice orchard ---- all covered with feet of snow and a fresh layer of debt.

 The national guard dropped food and baby formula, but we were fine ---- my mom believed the pantry should be the biggest room in the house. A trait she held til death.  Our immediate area had a much larger death loss to cattle than 20%.

 

The drought of 1950's ended for our area with that storm.  We grazed cattle on wheat and harvested 30+ bu wheat dry land for nearly all of the next 30 years ------- and now have struggled raising wheat for the last 15----- hit and miss or worse.  

 

 

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Senior Advisor

Re: Remember 41 years ago?

Wind - I don't remember us here geting any big snows here in '73' BUT I do remember this from 40 years ago as it was yesterday , man what a day or I should say afternoon , boys is was so hot and humid it was unreal , BTW I was a senior that year and watch a big one , on the ground go just west of school 5 miles -

 

http://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/1974-super-tornado-outbreak/25247684

 

 

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Advisor

Re: Remember 41 years ago?

Indiana can sure spawn some "big ones."  You had another out break in 1965 on Palm Sunday.

I have never seen a tornado on the ground, just funnel clouds around here.  Back to that April 9,1973 snow storm.  We got  sun burned the next day pushing snow, the high, bright April sun reflecting off the snow did the trick.

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Veteran Advisor

Re: Remember 41 years ago?

Lots of memories for Mrs. J and me...

 

we were dairy farming and had gone over to my folks for Sunday dinner....came back home and it was really snowing......just a day or two before we had turned some holstein heifers out of the barn and they were taking full advantage of a 3 acre lot. We took a 4020 with a cab down to the far end of the lot and attempted to drive the animals to the barn right into the face of the storm.....after several failed attempts, we were forced to give up.....in our hearts we knew the animals would crowd together and eventually suffocate...

 

well, lo and behold, we woke up the next morning and saw that it had snowed so much that the animals walked over the top of the fence and were standing out in the middle of road......took awhile to get enough snow moved to get them back in a lot, but we were thrilled at the outcome...

 

I recall our milk tank was just about full on Monday AM, and we didn't see a milk truck to at least Thursday...

 

Ray J

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Advisor

Re: Remember 41 years ago?

I was only 4 but do remember having a basement full of calves. This was the only warm, dry place to put them. Dad always told how he put a newborn right in the oven to warm it up and save it.
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Senior Advisor

Re: Remember 41 years ago?

I've never been a real fan of veal, but if I were I'm sure I would prefer to have it butchered before hand.   Smiley Very Happy

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