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Goats, gripes, and grasping for greatness
"The price we pay for the life we lead" or "Best-spent $150 for cold weather" 
23rd-Jan-2013 07:20 am
Goldie pbhttt
It's 12 degrees outside. I've just come in from a half an hour of goat chores.

And I'm pretty toasty, actually, and my hands are downright hot. That is because, some spring day more than five years ago, I laid down the money and time to shop the Lands End overstock catalog for an arctic parka (with zip-out inside jacket/liner) and flannel-lined jeans. Since then, I have also acquired Thinsulate 40-gram waterproof gloves from Tractor Supply. (My regular hiking socks and hand-spun ski cap do fine for the ends.)

I can't emphasize enough how important the right gear is for surviving the cold without being totally miserable. Sure, I'll be complaining when it's 30 degrees and blowing sleet because that is miserable. But a calm, still, dawning 12 is actually not that bad when I'm dressed for it.

And yes, the goats are fine. They have heated water buckets and big nests of hay to eat and sleep in, and each other to share the warmth and block the wind. The llama doesn't seem to notice the cold much at all.
23rd-Jan-2013 01:40 pm (UTC)
I have been thinking very similar thoughts the last few days. My 20 minute walk to the train was actually kind of refreshing yesterday, despite it being zero degrees, thanks to the right gear.
23rd-Jan-2013 01:59 pm (UTC)
::nod:: When I worked in Calgary, even walking to work in -17 wasn't so bad (if it wasn't windy) once I had purchased a new jacket there in town.
23rd-Jan-2013 04:37 pm (UTC)
I do fine once I get moving (in my knee-length down parka, wool scarf, wool sweater, wool pants, wool socks, wool hat, and boots), but man, those first few minutes when the wind hits my face and my cheeks go numb are killer.
23rd-Jan-2013 06:16 pm (UTC)
Agreed. If I'm moving, things aren't bad. If I'm just sitting there in the barn (blowdrying baby goats, for example), I need a lot more layers and warmth.
23rd-Jan-2013 06:32 pm (UTC)
I swear by flannel lined jeans, thermals, and the right parkas.The kids couldn't believe that school was delayed 2 hours because of the cold yesterday (this would have been nothing in UT) until I explained that not everyone has the right clothes, and standing at the bus stop could be dangerous for the little ones. Glad to read that the animals are all doing ok.
23rd-Jan-2013 07:53 pm (UTC)
I don't like thermals, but I'm fine with tights. Go figure.

And I still remember when our Dakota neighbor came down the street to verify that really, really, school was closed for a mere four inches of snow.
23rd-Jan-2013 07:26 pm (UTC)

My nephew (my sister's child) goes to preschool here three days a week: http://www.waldkindergarten-zh.ch/ They are outside in all weather which I love it. I definitely believe there is no bad weather - there are only unprepared people.
23rd-Jan-2013 07:29 pm (UTC)
Erm, which I love. I proofread it, too!
23rd-Jan-2013 07:52 pm (UTC)

I like your line. I'm going to have to quote it at a couple of people here at work. They come into the office wearing light jackets complaining of the cold. Um...
23rd-Jan-2013 08:17 pm (UTC)
Actually I was kind of going off the line there is no bad weather only inappropriate/bad clothing, which I have heard from many sources. Yes, sounds like your officemates need to go shopping!
23rd-Jan-2013 11:23 pm (UTC)
I've heard it a lot around here in reference to biking: There's no such thing as bad weather, just inadequate gear.

I like this version better.
24th-Jan-2013 12:19 pm (UTC)
It really is amazing how much you need to stay warm when sitting idle. And how much heat even a little work generates.

And good gear can make all the differences.

I hunting buddy earlier this year asked how I stayed comfortable in the cold. I pointed him to ECWCS base layer gear. The next weekend he said it was the first time in 30 years of hunting he was actually warm while sitting in his stand.

A recent range trip on a 25 degree day, we had a few people show up less than fully prepared for the cold. They couldn't figure out why some of us had no gloves on and still had warm hands, and their gloved hands were cold. Its all about keeping your core warm.

I guess when you grow up in colder climates, you figure this sorta stuff out.... or move south =).

This reminds me I'm still on the hunt for a proper casual wear parka. The nice fashion leather coat I have is nice, but is not what I'd call warm.

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