Friday, October 14, 2011

Kansas Dust Storm

Dateline October 6 2011

Ever heard of the "Dirty Thirties"? or the "Dust Bowl"?
For those of you who have never heard of this
 it was during 1930 to 1936 (and in some places to 1940)
where terrible dust storms blew across
the American and Canadian prairies.

It was caused by severe drought conditions and many 
years of poor land management.
If you'd like to read more on this you can go

Well starting on October 4th we had 3 days of what
I call a mild case of the "dirty thirties".

THIS is what we saw out our windows.
I didn't dare take my camera outside
until after it was all done blowing.

The only places that seemed to get hit by this
were the ones that were down wind of
fields that weren't planted with a second crop.

Because of our record breaking heat and drought conditions
this summer and fall and the fact that they cut down
the windbreaks to the south and west of us
and didn't plant those second crops
we got hit bad.

Just going outside to feed the chickens or collect eggs 
or run to the car got you grit in your teeth
and dust in your eyes and in your hair
not to mention make your
allergies flare!

Where the dogs would lay on the kitchen floor...
there was a little pile of powdered dirt.
That same stuff came into the house through a couple of 
places under our front door! 

When I realized what was happening I put a towel along
the bottom of the door but it was too late.
Some of that dust got into the house and I had JUST finished
dusting and vacuuming everything 
because my sister is coming to visit soon!

Oh well...I can't complain about being bored ;)

That pumpkin had just been put outside a couple of 
hours before this picture was taken...if that!

When I finally got outside to take pictures...every step I took blew up a dust cloud.

Below is how this stone is supposed to look.

When I went out to collect eggs at night while this was happening
it looked like a blizzard in the beam of my flashlight!

The poor plants were covered.

When you live in the country you expect dust.
We sure weren't expecting this though.

And here just before this happened I had gone around
and swept off all the window sills and porches 
and sidewalks and was thinking
"what a cute little clean cottage".

Two days rained. For 3 days. 

Fortunately hubby had taken the leaf blower out and went
around the place blowing the dust off every surface he could!

We still ended up with a mess.

But hey...we finally got rain!

I'm connecting with Amy for 

Have a great weekend!

ps...things are finally turning green here after 1.5 inches of rain last weekend :)
Yes...3 days and only 1.5 inches of rain!

I'm sure I heard the tree's give a happy sigh though.


Sunray Gardens said...

That is unreal looking. I can't even imagine seeing that let alone all the dust there.
Cher Sunray Gardens

Country Gal said...

WOW ! I have never seen so much dust, we have never had that much dust from fields around us but we do get a lot of snow drifts from them in the winter. Amazing photos I hope all the dust goes away soon for you. Have a good day.

Deb said...

Just what you need...more dusting. Great photos but I'm glad it's over for you. Enjoy your sister's visit. Give those kitties a hug for me. Deb

Mellodee said...

Oh wow! That is incredible. Your first few photos remind me of the beginning of The Wizard of Oz just before the tornado hits blowing everything around! What a pity that you could have a nice breezy day afterward that would just blow it all away again. (I know it doesn't work like that.)

Glad you got some rain, hope you get more, just not enough to turn everything into mud!

Kath said...

OMG that is amazing! so glad we don't get dust storms here.

Janne said...

Great photographs! I grew up in New Mexico and drifts of dirt on the windowsills and by the door were a common sight, so I can relate. I love to read your blog. Thank you for sharing.

Ironstone and Pine said...

Hi Maura.....just wanted to let you know I chose you as one of my Versatile Blog recipients, check it out and have a great weekend! devon :)

Ironstone and Pine said...

p.s. that is some CRAZY kind of dust, wow!!

GardenofDaisies said...

Oh my gosh! A mini dust bowl! That's kinda scary! Grit in the eyes and teeth would not be nice. I have never been through anything like that. I was just thinking that you might need to take a power washer to everything ... but it sounds like rain tried it's best.

Janet said...

Bet you were washing windows for days !

Martha said...

Wow -- is all I can say -- you certainly experienced a dust bowl experience!

quiltzyx said...

I used to live Fontana, CA, where 40 mph winds were really just "breezes". No matter how good the weatherstrips, there was always dust coming in.
But NOTHING like that!

I'm glad to hear that it's getting green at last. :D

karen - Simply Inspired said...

remarkable... i am thinking even your teeth must have had dust on them... poor dear! welcome to the rain...

Lynne said...

I had no idea this is what a Kansas dust storm was like! Amazing . . .

Lynne said...

I had no idea this was what a Kansas dust storm was like.
Amazing . . .

Cheryl @ The Farmer's Daughter said...

Oh wow! So much dust...I'm speechless. I can't imagine dealing with that much. So glad it's ended and that you got a bit of rain. Have a great visit with your sister!

Pondside said...

The dust in the house really got me - what a terrible wind that must have been!

cindy said...

Oh my gosh- what a mess it left. I have never seen a dust storm but have heard about them.
Hope you have an easy clean up.

enjoyed your blog-
I’m a follower now.


Cindy (Applestone Cottage) said...

Oh my goodness Maura, it reminds me of the Wizard of Oz! You really are in Kansas aren't you!!
I've always been fascinated by the dust bowl era as it's about the time my Mom was born.
That pic of your cat looking on is just the cutest thing!
Have a great day and I hope you can get some more rain too!

Michaele said...

This really brings to mind the book "Grapes of Wrath". We never realize just how bad the dust can be. I am so glad you caught and shared this with us. Sorry for you tho' choke-choke.

sgtempleton said...

I was raised in Phoenix Arizona. We had dust storms there that looked like the end of the world was coming. Everything came to a standstill until the dust had blown itself past and then comes the clean up. Amazing and exciting nature in action.

Catherine said...

I have never seen that before! dust everywhere...glad you go rain! good weekend. Catherine

Susan said...

Dust, dust everywhere you look. Wow, that would upset me, but oh well what can you do but clean up and hope it doesn't happen again any time soon. Thanks for coming to my blog, Your blog is beautiful! I'll be your newest follower!

marilyn said...

Dear Maura,
This was absolutely heart-breaking to me as I know the effort it will take to restore the inside and outside of your beautiful home. I know about dust storms as we had them in Nevada but nothing to this extent. Don't overdo on the cleaning, take care of yourself, and take lots of breaks. Again, I am sooo sorry.

LANA said...

Wow - Must have been quite a task to clean up!

Anonymous said...

Hello dear Maura! First of all greetings from Italy! Here there are no dust storms because where I live at Lake Iseo in the province of Brescia (go on google search for images, you'll see what a beautiful place!) Here there are mountains, meadows, lake, fields of corn , vineyards and countryside. So these things do not happen by luck! Autumn temperatures are not too, the afternoon is good with short sleeves and only in the morning and evening should cover themselves with a light jacket. I'd be crazy to see all that sand on my house! Here it does not rain for a long time! I remember it rained one day in early September, then nothing! But I prefer the sun and are happy if it does not rain! I am sending you a kiss with love, Kiki.

Verde Farm said...

Maura, I can’t believe this. I just know it has to be so disheartening, particularly since it can be somewhat avoided. I have never seen anything like this except a small dust storm when I was in Arizona. We don’t have this phenomenon. Very interesting about the thirties!!
Hugs, MM

Beth said...

gosh what a mess. sure wish you luck on cleaning all that up. but if you are like me ... i enjoy keeping things extra clean & in it's place. i would be out there with my leaf blower getting everything back to normal. you have a great day as well. (:

Beth said...

gosh, what a mess. wish you luck on cleaning it all up. if you are like me i would want it cleaned right away & back in it's place. you have a great day as well. (:

❁Velma ~Down Our Country Road❁ said...

Oh my goodness, Maura! Our house sits on a bit of a hill and the wind blows pretty darn hard. Shortly after we built our house, we had gale force winds that would blow the dust thru the window sills and grass or flowers to hold down the dirt. But nothing as bad as what you experienced. Of course, we don't live close to farmland like you do. :/ We still have wind but not so much dust:)
Oh, and we also got rain last weekend. I think the same front that went thru your area. We got 2 inches of very welcomed rain. Yep, I heard the vegetation let out a VERY deep sigh of relief.

Bearly Sane said...

Wow Maura.....what a messy ol' dust storm that was. I bet you were so glad to have the rain clear the air. Just as well hubs blew some of it away or otherwise you would have had a mud bath!

The weather here has been kinder to us lately and we have finally begun to see some the ol' bones are a little less creaky. LOL!!

So glad to actually be able to post here today too. Hope you're having a much nicer week.

hilary @ oldhouse.truelove. said...

your photos are so neat! but ugh! what a mess!

Betsy said...

Wow-that was some storm! I've never seen anything like that. Your pictures really gave us a feel for it. I especially liked the dust on the pumpkin!

Red Gate Farm said...

Wow! That is truly unbelievable! We've watched something on the History channel about the "dust bowl" and it was unbelievable to the extreme! I can't imagine anything being out in that and breathing all that dust! In our little old house that dust would have even come in through the windows...

I'm happy to hear that you've finally had some rain your way.


Our Country Bungalow said...

It's just like the descriptions in the book "The Worst Hard Time". Your pictures really give a feel for what that must have been like.
Glad you finally have had some rain but oh, what a mess it sounds like!

Wsprsweetly Of Cottages said...

Yes, I am familiar with the "dust bowl" family came out to California during that time. I have a picture of the home they left..which was demolished just a month after they left, killing the new inhabitants who bought it.
So, probably lucky I am alive. :) I was born in 1936 so grew up hearing about it.
It was a sad time and I have read and reread many time Grapes of Wrath that delt with those times.
I also lived some years in Bakersfield where many of those people went to pick fruit and try to survive. Many of the families there are important people in that community to this day.

The sight of that dust blowing..would make me so uneasy.
However it happened in Bakersfield Calfornia one year and filled pools and did major damage. No rain and dry fields..
make for bad things.
I am sooo pleased you finally got rain!

Neesie Natters said...

Amazing photo's Maura....but what a mess. It reminded me of living in the Middle East. We had dust storms regularly with high temperatures accommpanying them. Not pleasant.
My son used to write 'HELLO'on the furnature which could be very embarrassing if I didn't see it before visitors arrived. Don't you just love boys! ;D


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