Soft And Silent #13294

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The Story

A distant winter barn and companion outbuilding wait under an almost silent yet heavy falling snow, alone in the whiteness with an old-style split rail fence zig-zagging toward the foreground. Fat, heavy flakes of wet snow were coming fast and could actually be heard falling and landing in the deep quiet while making a slight, faint hiss.

There was so much snow falling at once there is no background in the picture. Falling straight down with no swirl, the snow made a thick fog of falling flakes that vanished the horizon to make a fishbowl view all around. The landscape around me had been clipped and very narrowed. In a short time, the green metal barn roofs would be white and only the matching green trim would show along with a few dark windows on weathered white barn siding.

This kind of heavy winter snow is what the oldtimers call a bushbender, which can be memorable, deep, and sometimes legendary. Bare tree limbs and near-bare bushes seen here were soon to be thickly covered along with everything else. This Pennsylvania county is well known to be a snow alley and it can be even more plentiful higher up into the mountains. On this winter day, I had gone there in a 4WD truck. I was looking for country scenes with winter barns and farms like this one as the snow came down.

Nature was creating an interesting moment to stand here being inundated in white by flakes the size of nickels and soon I too had a decent new over-layer. It only took a few images to capture what I wanted of this winter landscape; the beauty at this rural farm would have been hard to miss. Then I simply stood and let it all be for a short while, becoming all of my senses and having no thoughts. The pure white, the fat flakes, and the nearly silent hiss in the damp yet clean cool of this winter snowfall filled me like a gift. The oncoming snow was about to change this world entirely for a little while and I let it change me a little too.

Location: rural Somerset County, Pennsylvania. Picture and story © Andrew Dierks

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