Ice Storm and cold temperatures

dipat2005 Posts: 1,278 ✭✭✭✭
edited January 23 in Shelter-in-Place

The ice storm finally hit us this morning. I know that those who live in Canada are much colder than we will be in Oregon.

The temperature should hit 15 degrees tonight. I have lived in Colorado where it was 30 degrees below 0. That day they had school too. The Superintendent was from Wasilla, Alaska and he knew cold!

How cold has it gotten where you live and did you lose electricity? Do you have wood stoves? or other ways to keep warm?

How do you prepare for this kind of weather?


  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,640 admin

    It was -34C (-29F) here yesterday morning and -32C this morning. Thursday was worse, though, cause even though the thermometer was only -28C, the wind chill brought it down to -45C (-49F). Not record breaking, though. It can be much worse in January.

    We haven't lost power and don't worry too much about that. We have a wood furnace, a wood cookstove and a propane range. We have a small generator, too. Not big enough to power the whole house but enough to keep essentials running.

    Even with our wood heat we still have blankets, towels and sheets being used at doorways and any windows that open.

    On a bright note, it is starting to stay light longer in the afternoon.

  • water2world
    water2world Posts: 1,156 ✭✭✭✭

    @dipat2005 We have just gotten to temp in the teens and calling for single digits in a couple of days. My son is in Belize this week (high was 86 today). Needless to say, he thinks he should stay a few more days!

    Warmth means keeping my feet warm, and a cup of hot chocolate, so my feet are propped up in front of the fireplace while I drink my hot chocolate!!

    I don't know that I could ever feel warm with temps below 0!!

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,518 admin

    @dipat2005 Our weather has been similar to Torey's. I don't think our windchill got quite to -40, but it may have. We have about 6-8" of snow right now, and as darkness came, it was still snowing. The wind has been high and it has a definite bite. There are some pretty tall & long drifts in some places. She is right, January & even into Feb. can be really cold & have lots of snow.

    We went to get water from the spring today, so we had quite an interesting drive.

    Two pictures follow of the spring.

    We used to have a wood stove until we had a chimney fire that broke up the liner. We have been talking about hooking it up again with a fully new chimney system, but they are very expensive. Insulating our house has come first. We had either no or next to no insulation in our walls.

    We have a pellet stove that needs some work before we could use it again.

    We have electric heat. We also have an infrared heater in our living room, which is pretty nice. I have a Vermont soapstone bedwarmer too that I haven't used yet this winter, but I've been considering that lately too. You really should have 1 per person if you are getting them.

    A braided wool rug on the floor helps keep things warmer in our living room.

    We've had no power flickers or outages, which is lovely.

    None of our windows open at this temperature. They all freeze shut.

    I Iike the thought of hot chocolate tonight (and often will have tea of hot chocolate), but believe it or not, we're going to have an ice cream treat. There was a not-to-be-missed sale on it for $2, when it would normally be $7.

    I posted more information about Western Canada's current weather here:

  • SuperC
    SuperC Posts: 951 ✭✭✭✭

    Dress in many layers to stay warm because you can always peel off a layer.

    Lots of blankets.

    a wood stove. We brought in our wood in the late fall and we keep a reserve outside.

    we load up on food essentials. We cook meals and freeze them. This year i bought peaches and pears, and air-tight froze them as stone fruits are loaded with nutrients.

    we eat what is in season not just because it’s on the store shelves. However, an icecream treat sounds perfect!

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,518 admin

    @SuperC It was chocolate hazelnut and a top brand. It was decadent and greatly enjoyed.

    I'm planning to have mushroom hot chocolate tonight! 😀

  • Michelle D
    Michelle D Posts: 1,465 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Our daytime temperatures have been in the single digits. We have had large amounts of snow in short periods and extremely high winds.

    A large percentage of the area lost power on Friday. This was the first major storm in 2 years that we didn't lose power for a prolonged time. We invited friends without power to make themselves at home in our house to stay warm.

  • dipat2005
    dipat2005 Posts: 1,278 ✭✭✭✭

    I was intrigued by what soapstone was and it was very interesting. My mom used to use a Ho t water bottle if it was really cold.

    As a child we had a natural gas furnace that worked really well and I don't remember any time when we had an electrical outage.

    There are a lot of people in our area today without power and according to all of the power companies it likely will take several days for power to come on. Most of us do not have an alternative source of heat. We do have a lot of blankets to keep warm and out flashlights handy.

    I do have a full freezer and plenty of food.

  • vickeym
    vickeym Posts: 2,113 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited January 22

    @dipat2005 Wasilla, Alaska is the nearest city to me. About 65 miles to the city limits.

    We are pretty lucky in regard to heat and power. We live off grid anyway, so until someone tells us their power is out, or we go to the store or some place, we don't know it is out.

    We have a propane cook stove. We also have a wood cook stove but it isn't very efficient so we don't use it much. We have a small and a larger generator with a small battery and inverter setup. A few solar panels which are pretty much useless in winter here.

    We heat with wood, and have 10 acres, so with all the beetle kill spruce and selective cutting of birch (the closest to a hardwood here) we stay warm. When it is really cold say -25F or so, I will plan meals that include baked or roasted items using the oven to add more heat. We keep a large, 5 gallon pot of water on top of the wood stove so we have hot water when needed but it also acts as a heat sink to store some heat which radiates back into the room if the room gets cooler than the water.

    We have extra blankets and such and will dress in layers if it is very cold. I also keep a box of toe warmers on hand because my feet get cold easy.

  • dipat2005
    dipat2005 Posts: 1,278 ✭✭✭✭

    @vickeym I have never heard of toe warmers. My feet were so cold and I can understand that toe warmers would be wonderful.

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,640 admin


    These hand warmers are USB rechargeable, so all you need is a charger bank and you are good for quite awhile.

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,640 admin

    I just came across this unit. A stove/heater that works on canned fuel (sterno). It won't heat a house but will keep a small area warm.

    This is the link for more info and pricing.

  • Michelle D
    Michelle D Posts: 1,465 ✭✭✭✭✭

    We have this heater. We bought it for when we are camping. My husband also uses it when working in the garage, but it can be used for emergency heat also.

    Mr. Heater F232000 MH9BX Buddy 4,000-9,000-BTU Indoor-Safe Portable Propane Radiant Heater, Red-Black

  • dipat2005
    dipat2005 Posts: 1,278 ✭✭✭✭

    @Torey thanks for the pictures. I would love a heater like that but we cannot have that in our apartment.

  • vickeym
    vickeym Posts: 2,113 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @dipat2005 I have the style of toe warmer in the picture @Torey posted first. I have not seen the insole foot warmers in the second photo. I will be looking for them. There are times my feet get very cold.

    There are many great ideas in this thread. Having been in the double digit negative number temperatures for about two weeks now it has been a much nicer day today as our high temperature today was plus 6 F.

    Amazing how good that feels after -28 on Saturday.