It's been pretty wooly out here the past few days. We've had three storms in three days. The first storm, on Sunday afternoon, gave us about half an inch of rain and some winds up around 30mph. Yesterday's storm was bigger, with about an inch and a half of rain and winds up to 40mph. And today we've received about an inch of rain with our top gust at 28mph. But, as it typically true in California, as the rain has passed, we've had interludes of beautiful weather. When the sun comes out, I think that winter is the most beautiful time of year. The intense green of the cover crops, the earthy browns of the vineyards, and the blue and white interplay of clouds in the sky are totally different from what the region looks like in any other season. In this interlude, I made it outside to take some photos. First, a shot of our patio just after the sun came out, water still dripping off the shadecloth:
The drops of water on the vines made them look like they were encased in ice:
The only damage that we've seen has been some minor erosion on the gravel roads into the vineyard (left). On the steeper slopes, we laid down straw to help minimize the soil loss (right).
The cover crops are having a field day. Because they were so well established, we've already disked them under once, and seeded with a mix of sweet peas, oats, vetch and clover:
The softness of the landscape is a hallmark of winter, and highlighted particularly by the drama of the skies:
Finally, a fun shot of our old vineyard truck, with the stormy Santa Lucia mountains in the background: