Yesterday we had what will likely end up being our largest rain event of the year. A sudden onset of torrential rain was soon accompanied by large volumes of pea- and chickpea-sized hail. Our house sits at the bottom of our hill, and I knew that water coming down the hill wouldn’t drain terribly well after it hit our foundation. Yesterday it came down the hill in torrents, through the bare dirt near the house, and accumulated to a depth of several inches, getting up to the bottom of the siding, but not quite to the crawlspace vents.
I went out in shorts and a boonie hat and semi-frantically moved a dog-dig-barrier out from under a fence at the corner of the house, and then removed more dirt with a shovel to get it draining faster. After the storm abated and gravity did its job, the water along the back of the house had dropped by about an inch, just below the edge of the siding. An inspection under the house revealed a lot of seeping through the concrete, but no puddles, so it seems the ground was ready to absorb quite a bit of moisture – no surprise considering how dry it usually is here.
The bare area of soil behind our house is on the list for some TLC, and this event just highlighted the need to get on with getting something growing there. It is a frost pocket in winter, and I don’t believe that helps with keeping ground cover alive.
We had obtained four adult Blue Laced Red Wyandotte chickens the night before, and during the storm they weren’t quite sure where to go. They sought shelter under a ponderosa, but still got pathetically soaked. I managed to catch three of them, and Mrs. D. dried them off with a towel. We put a heat lamp in the coop in hopes of keeping them from getting chilled further. All are doing fine today. I was feeling a mite wet and chilly myself by the time I was done reacting to the storm.
We have been leaving the van out of the garage, since the garage itself is seeing a lot of use. Moving bikes, toys, and various projects out of the way in a hurry while trying to get the van in out of the hail highlighted how much keeping things tidy helps when you have to respond to an emergency.
The tomatoes and beans seem little worse for the wear. Our summer squash leaves look like they were blasted with a shotgun, but the plants will probably make it. The storm did no other noticeable damage.