Halloween snow storm Silver Lake neighborhood, Bellingham

Snow-covered bird feeders in our yard help provide a measure of all the snow that fell the day before

We live near Silver Lake in Bellingham, and watched with others as rain fell for two days before turning to snow, and then kept snowing the whole day. What had been forecast as 1-3 inches of snow turned out to be more like 5 inches, at least in our neighborhood. We woke to a winter wonderland Halloween morning and headed right out before the warming sun melted everything and returned us to autumn.

Already warming up, I’m down a few layers of clothing in the sunshine

Cold (about 20 degrees) when we started out, we dressed in layers–long-sleeved undershirt, ski jacket, with my blaze orange sweat shirt over everything. Hunting season is upon us, and deer frequent the woods behind our house. While we saw no other human footprints on our outing, it’s good to be prepared.

The trolley ran through here in years gone by, bringing visitors to Silver Lake.

The early snow weighed down trees not quite ready for winter.

This maple was not quite ready for snow–its green leaves are coated with ice

A maple tree stood next to the former trolley path that cuts through the woods behind our house.

Gate blocks the old trolley bed, but the bigger challenge is all the trees bowed down under the weight of snow

As we strolled along, we realized our path trip might take a little more work than we had planned, out to what my kids grew up calling “the sandpits.”

White pine needle clusters coated in snow

Birches, white pines and even witch hazel were coated in snow, bowed down,

Witch hazel blossoms in the snow

but not broken by the weight of all the ice crystals.

Stream flowing through the woods

We checked to see if we could cross the stream bed that had been bone dry just a few weeks ago. Nope. Two days of solid rain then another day of wet snow had gotten the stream flowing again. Plan B. Straight ahead the other way around.

Growing pines along the path now weighed down with snow

Our family has been walking these paths for nearly forty years, and a lot has changed. Years ago, small pines and other shrubs had begun taking root in an area mined for gravel and sand.

Wide open spaces in the sand pits (picture from thirty years ago)

But since we moved here, those small pines have grown and created dense woodland that is becoming more challenging to walk through.

This snow has already fallen to the ground, but for one morning, it offered a winter wonderland

We look toward another winter, grateful for being able to remain healthy even in the midst of a pandemic. We spend time with others in the outdoors, wearing masks when friends and extended family join us. Stay warm, keep dry, dress in layers, and take care. Happy trails!

Marjorie

Marjorie Turner Hollman is a personal historian who loves the outdoors, and is the author of Easy Walks in Massachusetts, 2nd editionMore Easy Walks in Massachusetts, 2nd edition, and editor of Easy Walks and Paddles in the Ten Mile River Watershed. Just out is her latest book, Finding Easy Walks Wherever You Are. She has been a freelance writer for numerous local, regional, and national publications for the past 20+ years, has helped numerous families to save their stories, and has recorded multiple veterans oral histories, now housed at the Library of Congress. She is a co-author of the recent community history, Bellingham Now and Then.

2 Comments

Filed under Blog posts--Easy Walks

2 responses to “Halloween snow storm Silver Lake neighborhood, Bellingham

  1. Philip Howard Brewer

    REALLY NICE DID NOT KNOW ABOUT THE TROLLEY LINE BUT THE SNETT YES WAS AI THRILL TO LEARN OF NEW PLACES

    • marjorie561

      So much history has been ‘overwritten” as it were by new generations–roads built, new construction. Amazing to see the landscape with new eyes. Thanks for commenting.

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