Tenacity Through The Storms

Once again, Mother Nature has shown its unpredictability with a late winter snowstorm and relentless rainfall. Last weekend, after a couple of days of nice weather, the clouds rolled in.

It dumped two to three feet of snow in the Black Hills, dusted the prairie with a light white coating and then continued to rain for days.

There have been all kinds of postings on social media - complete with hysterical commentary, such as: “Hello, Mother Nature, I'd like to speak to the manager.”

In the hills 20 miles west of us, trees have fallen, power lines are down, and power is out. 

On the prairie, the water has run out of holes to fill and has saturated the high grounds too.  Dams are full, earth is giving way, and fingers are crossed that it will all hold together. 

Rivers and creeks run high and fast, flooding over or washing out roads, making our journey to town risky or impossible. 

The buffalo move through it as they have for hundreds of years, unaffected and shaking off the water from their shaggy coats.

And we move about checking on things in areas that we can get to and we make lists and plans for worse case scenarios for the repair needs that will follow; downed fences, dam repair, back-hoe rental for digging new drainage channels, sump pump for removing water in basements, etc. 

Like so many across the world that experience nature’s climate changing elements, we push our sleeves up and take care of what needs to be taken care of. Trying to protect what we hold dear, including the Earth itself. 

Facing these issues on this Memorial weekend humbles us as we think of our tenacious fallen soldiers who rolled up their sleeves, fought the ultimate battle for all of us and sacrificed the most by giving their lives. Their strength and bravery remind us to carry on - because that’s what we do. 

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  • Thank you for the photos and description of spring in Montana. Here in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park we have had
    similar issues with water, cold and crazy weather. Like you we work on and fix what nature takes out. My best to you and your family. And the buffies….

    Elaine Lee
  • It’s heartbreaking to see the impact mother nature has had on your business. The face of the bison with snow on his face hurts. I do hope things spring back (no pun intended) soon. Take care and be safe!

    Linda L. Whittington
  • you have been in my thoughts and I love that the bison just accept mother nature. I hope we can protect this earth for them to be on for years to come.

    conni borwick
  • Hi Dan and Jill – Thanks for the great pictures and story about the weather in your area this spring. The ice encrusted buffalo is a very good shot indeed. These creatures are built to survive winter for sure! It does look like climate change is bringing more and more difficult weather to us now, and things appear to be getting more difficult everywhere on earth these days. All we can do is to put it all in God’s loving arms, and do our best to survive. More power to you. Love, Don

    Donald G Meyer
  • We have to “spit on our hands and take a fresh holt.”

    (From “The Pioneers” by David McCullough").

    Bruce Green
  • I enjoyed the Mother Nature story, thanks.

    Gerald Carl
  • nature as instructor provided another opportunity to learn of her countless lessons, as you again attest. she only wanted you to scratch her back with muddy hands and feet for a little while, perhaps to sharpen the shared relationship.
    beautiful offering, always grand in word and visual.

    Blake O'Quinn
  • EXCELLENT PIECE!! Wonderfully depicted, with photos and words. Very timely, with your tie-in to this weekend and tribute, to our warriors and the true grit, of prairie and mountain people, who always get the job done. Well said!
    P.S. So glad I was on the opposite end of the state, visiting for the first time, in seven years but having only to contend with temperatures in the 40’s and constant rain. For an Arizonan, that was quite enough.

    Georgene Erickson
  • After seeing the video Jill made of the roaring water, you folks have been on my mind. Looks like things have calmed down; glad for that. Lots of work ahead, I’m sure. Thanks for keeping us posted!

    Liz Aicher
  • I have been following your weather via Accu Weather. We certainly are experiencing some crazy conditions. Here in the French Pyrenees our weather is somewhat upside down. We experienced glorious weather throughout the winter and now it is more like winter.

    You are doing a fantastic job and I love following your blogs etc. The images are amazing. Conservation is hard work and the same applies here in France. All they want to do is shoot everything that moves. Sad people.

  • The plains are flooded too. Dams threatened roads caved in Good part is lots of pasture grass once some of the flooding recedes Our Ranch has local runoff streams into a big lake reservoir which helps

    Betty Richards

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