The temperature dropped to -18C through the night and we woke this morning to a power cut. Power cuts don't generally affect us too badly as we have an L.P.G. cooker and the woodburning stove also heats water, so as long as we have plenty candles we manage quite well. The main worry is that if the power is off too long the deep freeze will start to defrost, but thankfully the lights were back on by the middle of the day.
Today's news was dominated by the chaos caused in the central belt yesterday by heavy snow bringing the main road networks to a standstill. The snow seems to be moving south and west and the forecast is for rising temperatures towards the end of the week. When it eventually does start to thaw there are bound to be problems with flooding as there is so much snow lying. There are also massive icicles hanging from many buildings and in some local towns the fire brigade have been going round knocking them down as they pose such a danger.
There are no longer cattle in the lower fields so we headed down there for a walk today. Although the snow is about 10" - 1' deep you can walk on it without sinking right in. There are a couple of inches of fine powdery snow on the surface but underneath it's quite firm. Trails of deer and rabbit tracks criss cross the snow and the dogs added their own unique tracks as they rushed around pursuing exciting smells along the fencelines. The bottom south west corner of the farm gets very little sun at this time of year and I took lots of photographs of the icy trees and frozen grasses. It's quite a stark, black and white landscape when the sun goes down and I think this picture looks particularly cold!