Walking Softly


There is close to a meter of snow on the ground – and more is falling today. This past week,  I had to start shoveling it off the roofs of our outbuildings from the ground using a roof rake, and was floundering around like a beached whale. Obviously, my body design wasn’t made for snow travel.

Lynx, though, do well in deep snow. There has been at least one on our property recently, and I was amazed at how little it was sinking in the white stuff, despite the fact the snow has been very fluffy, with little packing and no crusting.

After an absence of 20 some years, bobcats had started showing up in northwestern Ontario, but I suspect this winter will be hard on them. Unlike lynx, bobcat have small feet, and are more like me than a lynx in the deep snow. Indeed, there will be a lot of deaths in the north woods this year. But the creatures adapted to deep snow and cold have a much better chance of survival than those who favour milder climes, and had been inching their way north with the milder winters of the recent past.

And that, I think, is a good thing.

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