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More Winter Skills That Kept The Pioneers Alive

I grew up in a log house in Wyoming not far from the Colorado border. That was many years ago, when a trip to town was a major event. We heated with wood which chops easier in freezing weather. I remember Daddy and “the boss” working long days in the fall to haul in enough wood and cut it to stove length to get us through those long winters which often started in September and didn’t end until the end of May.

We kids slept in an unheated second story under quilts so heavy we could hardly turn over. Mom heated rocks on the stove, wrapped them in rags and gave them to us to keep our feet warm. The roof wasn’t very good and more than one morning, we woke up to snow on the quilts!

Besides salting meat, some of it was put in crocks under fat, some of it was dehydrated ala jerky and some of it was fresh as Daddy and “the boys” hunted rabbits and deer. Dried food like beans and peas were a large part of our winter diets because they kept very well.

Those were the days, though! Today we are so insulated from everything uncomfortable that we are fat, weak and unhappy. Sunshine, fresh air, hard work, real food and sometimes limited calories makes a person healthy.