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Old 11-30-2009, 07:18 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
31,146 posts, read 50,314,105 times
Reputation: 19849

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Quote:
Originally Posted by KoZmiC NinJa View Post
... Very high cost of living, locals who dont appreciate newcomers, cold 8 months
of the year, rainy, dark, cold 8 months of the year, rainy, dark and did I mention, cold and rainy 8 months of the year ? ...
WOW!

If I move South to Vermont I could find an 8 month winter?

I would have thought that to find such coldness I would have to go another 1,000 miles north.

Why would folks down South have such a logner winter than we have here in Maine?

Dark? too?

Here in Maine during the winter is when it is the brightest. We can't go outside in January without wearing sunglasses, but you again say that if I were to go South I would find 'darkness' in the winter?

How does that work?

Winters here are about 4 months long, and winters end up being much brighter than summers are. But you say that down South in Vermont, that winter grows to 8 months long and that it becomes dark.

Can you please explain this?
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Old 11-30-2009, 07:59 PM
 
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For one, the farther north you go the shorter the days are in winter.

( doubt that sun is casting a bright light on Maine /Vermont after sunset )
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Old 11-30-2009, 09:27 PM
 
256 posts, read 175,024 times
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Um, mountains . . . just measure them, folks. Then talk.
Hey, and your trees are short too. So nyah.

Saskatchewan . . . I lived up there this summer, on my friends' land, helping with the sheep (although mainly I was up there to train my sheepdog, I'll confess). We spent a lot of those long, long sweet summer evenings talking about their farming techniques. They actually *don't* work that hard. They used to grow wheat on the same acreage, like everybody else does, and how they grew up farming. When they decided to make the move to sheep, they felt guilty because they weren't killing themselves with work any more. They are one young couple, both of whom were working half time off the land, but one of whom has since quit her job, since the sheep were doing so well for them. Yes, their sheep lamb outdoors -- in spring, not winter. They select their sheep carefully for ability to thrive in the conditions they supply -- they don't keep ewes who lamb triplets, nor have they found that big range-type ewes work well there. A medium-size compact commercial whiteface seems to do best, although they are actively scouting for better genetics -- how they raise their sheep is so unusual that it is quite hard to find sheep selected for it. They do feed in the winter of course -- they bale graze. This winter they're also trying swathe grazing millet to see if that works better at keeping the chaff out of the wool, which is their main problem with bale grazing. A big difference between the high plains and new england is the lack of snow cover in the west. It's very dry in winter there. That's what makes swathe grazing possible. It couldn't work in New England, I imagine. They do not have any built shelter, but the land is hilly and there is a lot of brush.

All their neighbors make fun of them in SK too. They believe in big machinery, major chemical input, busting your ass, and still losing money. They insist their sheep are all going to die too. But it is working well for my friends so far. They lost one lamb last year, out of some hundreds (they have an LGD and a llama). They believe in low-labor grass farming, and they are making it work, with very well-thought-out, educated choices and careful experiments. They have been quite surprised how well it works. They are not living in a fantasy world, whether I am or not. If it wasn't paying, they wouldn't do it. They are real, commodity farmers.

I agree on the whole that New England presents a daunting picture, not so much because it is a difficult climate, but because I am unfamiliar with it. That unfamiliarity, together with my lack of connections there, would make things a lot harder, at least at first.

However, I am definitely becoming convinced of the unfriendliness of Vermonters. If I do eventually decide to move to the area, I'll be sure to avoid Vermont. I'll be at least one success story for those who don't want anyone to move there.
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Old 11-30-2009, 10:06 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
31,146 posts, read 50,314,105 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marmac View Post
For one, the farther north you go the shorter the days are in winter.

( doubt that sun is casting a bright light on Maine /Vermont after sunset )
My point exactly.

So why would winters be twice as long in Vermont than they are in Maine?

It makes no sense.
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Old 11-30-2009, 11:19 PM
 
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----" they used to grow wheat on the same acreage"

----" the land is hilly and there is a lot of brush"

You're starting to contradict yourself.
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Old 12-01-2009, 07:55 AM
 
Location: Inman
119 posts, read 528,616 times
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As a native Vermonter I have to say defend us by saying we are not unfriendly. We are the first one there when the new neighbor gets stuck in the driveway after a January storm. The first to offer the warmth of our woodstove when the power goes out and the neighbors do not have any heat. I hope you get my point. The only reason I am not in Vermont anymore is the other half of my marriage (another native Vermonter) hates snow!
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Old 12-01-2009, 09:15 AM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
18,543 posts, read 55,469,830 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by forest beekeeper View Post
WOW!

If I move South to Vermont I could find an 8 month winter?

I would have thought that to find such coldness I would have to go another 1,000 miles north.

Why would folks down South have such a logner winter than we have here in Maine?

Dark? too?

Here in Maine during the winter is when it is the brightest. We can't go outside in January without wearing sunglasses, but you again say that if I were to go South I would find 'darkness' in the winter?

How does that work?

Winters here are about 4 months long, and winters end up being much brighter than summers are. But you say that down South in Vermont, that winter grows to 8 months long and that it becomes dark.

Can you please explain this?
Actually, it IS darker in Vermont, with the possible exception of Burlington. The issue is the clouds. Maine gets swept free of clouds on a regular basis. Vermont does not. The Adirondacks and Green Mountains lift the air and form clouds. The Lake Champlain basin will often get a respite because of the lower level of the lake.

Clouds midwinter can effectively "move" sunrise and sunset. I've seen it get nighttime dark as early as 2:30 PM, and one winter there was a two month period where there was not a patch of blue sky, even in the Champlain Valley. If you live in one of the other valleys, the problem can be even worse.

Are there brilliant winter days in Vermont when sunglasses are a good idea? If you are on a ski slope on a sunny day, yes. MOST days, sunglasses are about the last thing you need.
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Old 12-01-2009, 09:37 AM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
31,146 posts, read 50,314,105 times
Reputation: 19849
Quote:
Originally Posted by harry chickpea View Post
Actually, it IS darker in Vermont, with the possible exception of Burlington. The issue is the clouds. Maine gets swept free of clouds on a regular basis. Vermont does not. The Adirondacks and Green Mountains lift the air and form clouds. The Lake Champlain basin will often get a respite because of the lower level of the lake.

Clouds midwinter can effectively "move" sunrise and sunset. I've seen it get nighttime dark as early as 2:30 PM, and one winter there was a two month period where there was not a patch of blue sky, even in the Champlain Valley. If you live in one of the other valleys, the problem can be even worse.

Are there brilliant winter days in Vermont when sunglasses are a good idea? If you are on a ski slope on a sunny day, yes. MOST days, sunglasses are about the last thing you need.
Okay, I had not thought of that.

Thank you

Moving up here from Ct, we have observed that we are well North of the Snow-belt that dumps everywhere East of the Great lakes.

It adds to our reputation though.

Folks in the snow-belt region [Chicago, Philly, NYC, Boston] assume that since we are North of them that our winters must be horrible.



We generally will get one storm each week. A blanket of a couple inches, followed by a week of clear skies and bright sun.

The glare is terrible, thus the need for sunglasses.

So you see [I hope] where my sunglasses only get used in the winter.



I had assumed that Vermont was likewise well North of that junk too. My apology.
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Old 12-01-2009, 10:01 AM
 
256 posts, read 175,024 times
Reputation: 933
tupperpartr, I am sure many Vermonters are as friendly and helpful as most farmers are everywhere (that I've met). By the way, I am very familiar with the feeling that one's land is being invaded by people who are ruining it. I was born in a valley once nicknamed "the valley of heart's delight". The topsoil is sixty feet thick in places, some of the best in the world. The climate is also one of the most kind known to man; there is little that won't grow there. I grew up picking apricots in the summers in the orchards that filled the whole valley, and riding my horse anywhere I chose. My town had one commercial street (named, originally enough, Main Street) and no stop lights.

It's called Silicon Valley now. In fifty years, the sea of orchards has turned into a sea of asphalt and houses and freeways. I don't think you Vermonters can tell me anything about the ills of development. I hate it there and never visit unless I must.

marmac, I am not contradicting myself about the wheat and brush. In this hilly area, the hollows of the hills all contain small ponds (often alkaline), and tall brush grows around these ponds. In the case of this former wheat farm, the hills were all in crop, and the ponds with their brushy surrounds were left alone. There are dozens of such ponds on the property. It made a fairly lowgrade wheat farm compared to the flat lands around it; the soils are poorer and it is a lot more work to cultivate -- that's why my young friends could afford to buy it to begin with. It makes a much better grass farm.

I'm sorry that my experience conflicts with your beliefs to the extent that you are reduced to jeering. It's not an ideal way to have a conversation, in my opinion.

Forest Beekeeper, I appreciate how you speak so calmly and fairly, and only directly from your own life, and how much wisdom you seem to have about living. Making choices based on what the land tells you and what your heart tells you is a very rewarding way to live, and one I always aspire to myself. You are an inspiration.
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Old 12-01-2009, 10:15 AM
 
9,807 posts, read 13,683,788 times
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I'm not jeering.

Your first posts didn't make sense until you now explained it.

---"it made a fairly lowgrade wheat farm compared to the flat lands around it; the soils are poorer"

sounds like it never could be / never was a profitable wheat farm to begin with.
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