I know it’s kind of gauche to bitch about the winter in New England when one chose to move and live here voluntarily lo these many years ago, but this winter is bitchworthy without further qualification.

We have never had as much snow as we’ve had this year, not even close. It has never been this cold for so long without any thaw days in the mix. We have never had three major winter storms on three consecutive weekends. Even here in the country, we are running out of space to push the snow, and down in Boston it just piles up because they don’t have any room left. Among my local friends, there’s widespread extreme winter fatigue. Spring can’t come soon enough, even if that means mud and blackflies, but at this rate I’m afraid it’ll take until July for all the snow to melt.

This is what the front of our house looks like right now:

The dogs have cabin fever. The humans definitely have cabin fever. And I’ve paid the plow guy so much money this year that I wouldn’t be surprised to see him pushing snow with one of those new Bentley SUVs next winter.

There are locals who have lived here half a century who say that they’ve never seen anything like it before. When you have seasoned New Englanders crying “uncle”, it’s a complete Bitchwinter.


26 thoughts on “Bitchwinter.

  1. That picture makes me think you have either a lack of properly installed insulation, or lack of properly vented cold air space under the roof deck, or both.
    I live about as far North as you can get in Wisconsin and do a fair amount of residential construction work and snow removal. Last year I think we had like 58″ of snowfall in the month of April. This year there is barely enough snow to make a proper boot print in my front yard. Weird.

    • I’m in Upstate NY. EVERYONE has ice-dams and icicles on their roofs this year. Doesn’t matter how well your roof is constructed, or what its constructed of. Its been so dammed cold that even the steepest pitched metal roofs aren’t shedding snow and ice like normal.

      • I know it’s counter intuitive, but cold is not what makes “ice dams”. Warmth is almost always what makes ice dams. If your roof is properly cold, and not improperly heated from below, ice is mostly avoided. Quite a few roofs that build ice on the bottom don’t have “insulation vent baffles” properly installed, which will allow the vented roof system to actually work as intended.

        • ‘Taint necessarily so. We’ve got a SW facing roof, & I rake all I can reach. This good late wintah sun starts the melting, even though the air temp is below freezing. The result is a shit-ton of ice caught at the eves.
          Does make wild sounds when it re-freezes, hard.

          • Yeah warmth from the sun can’t really be avoided, but a good free communication of air under the roof deck will help to minimize the effect. Usually not as big a problem if it’s truly “bitter cold”.

            I live on a waterway connected to Lake Superior. When the barometer changes and the ice starts to flex and crack it can be LOUD!! Keeps me up some nights. Startles people who don’t know what it is. Sometimes you can feel the shockwave through the ground.

        • When its so effing cold that the ice from sunmelt bonds to whatever its sitting on, and then its so effing cold that the sun can’t even melt the next layer it doesn’t matter WHAT the roof is made of or how its set up.

          • I guess perspective is everything. In weather that I consider to be effing cold, sunment isn’t a thing. I don’t know that it’s much of an issue in Polar regions.

            I do get what your saying though.

  2. I live in Minnesota. In my 32 years we have never had this little snow, I can see most of our lawn. It also seems so much warmer than usual.

  3. Come visit us in South Africa. Sun is warm and bright. Thunderstorms are spectacular. It’s dirt cheap. We have good beer. What more can I say?

  4. This Minnesotan, in a new home that needs a bit of roof work, sincerely thanks all you east coasters for running point this winter. Looks like a hell of a season out there!

  5. Living just north of Boston, I’m buried under mountains of snow, too. I ran into a gentleman in his eighties who’s lived here all his life, and HE said that he’s never seen a winter like this. The parking lots are ice rinks in many places, as it’s getting too cold for icemelt to work. I’m so done.

  6. I was up half the night with ice shrinkage in the wicked cold pounding the roof like a 50# sledge.
    I hate when that happens…

  7. In Alaska we’re canceling the sled dog races due to too little snow and warm weatherWhen you set up your life around cold winters with a lot of snow warm winters suck! We want our winter back!

  8. We’ve had record cold temps all over the place here in Indy, but not dick-all for snow, especially compared to last winter, which was once of the snowiest ever in the Circle City.

  9. Don’t feel bad- Your old home State of Tennessee is having some preeettttyyyy bad weather too. why looking out on my deck in the Nashville area, I got an inch or so of snow on it– But I guess I should not worry because around 4 this afternoon it will be melted.

    Ya got to love a place that closes schools if their is even a hint of snow and the women and men run out and buy up all of the Bread and milk.– I have often wondered why they do this– What do they eat milk

    • Do they also buy sugar, too? My Dad was from Missouri and he liked something he called Mulligan Stew, which was white bread chopped up with sugar and milk.

      • Nahh –They just make bread and milk sandwiches :-) I have never lived in a place like this! .As soon as there is a mention of snow in the forecast, all the women panic and buy out the grocery stores of bread and milk and for some reason, toilet paper . Also,the schools all shut down at the mention of a 1/2 inch of snow. But, as soon as there is snow, all the men in 4 wheel drive vehicles run down the roads at high speeds–after all they have 4 wheel drive. They all seem to forget that their vehicles are top heavy and when they start to slide they easily turn over. I like to call them turtle vehicles and you can see them all over Tennessee when it start to get a bit icy either in a ditch or ion there tops.

    • What kind of winter are they having now in Calgary and Edmonton?
      Way back in 1988 I had a conversation with an old guy there about the weather in Winter. He said there used to be a lot of minus 40 degree days in the 50’s, but a lot fewer so cold days in the years before 1988.

  10. See that’s what happens when you live in the south, like New Hampshire, no practice at dealing with snow that doesn’t melt till spring. People always ask me why I start the winter shoveling snow WAAAY back from where it needs to go. Duh.

    I think it’s time your organized a search party, found Al Gore and shipped him elsewhere, the man attracts cold and snow like nobodies business, since he started opening his yap we’ve had no measurable global warning at all.

    I feel for your sausage dogs though, it’s bad weather for them, my long legged hound gets pretty fraught when there’s no where safe to pee or defecate without getting cold snow in places it wasn’t meant to go.

  11. Himself asked me if you’re having a “fimbulwinter”?

    I say y’all should move down to the Hill Country in Texas. They have trees, and snow rarely stays more than a day or so.

  12. Um,…. dude…you live in the northern U.S., in NE, no less, which is known at times to have particularly brutal winters. It’s ALWAYS been that way. Having lived not far from you, I sympathize, because 5-6 feet of snow is a bitch. (More than that in the drifts). But um, NE, ya, it’s gonna do that every once in a while. Which is why, for the most part, only insane liberals live there.

    And having worked outside all day in Germany in the winter in a really BAD winter in the Eiffel mountains, trust me, you’re just getting your comeuppance:P All the Farmers in Speicher, Germany are laughing at you.

  13. A friend sent me a photo where her dog was able to lightly jump across the six foot tall fence into the neighbor’s yard because the snow was so high. Hang in there – Spring’s got to be here soon, if only so your snow plow guy can start looking for his new “ride”