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When frozen, fetch farmers and Fords

Shawn Foucher • Mar 25, 2014 at 9:53 AM

Say what you will about the winter we’ve endured, and feel free to use four-letter words. But don’t use the word “dull.”

Wednesday’s freakish blizzard was like a big, bold exclamation point on Winter 2014.

The whiteout conditions hit instantly that afternoon. It’s hard to describe the ferocity of the wind and snow; you had to drive in it to really appreciate its awesomeness.

That in mind, I found myself driving along some rural roads in Townsend Township when the storm hit. Most of the roads out that way are flanked by farmland on both sides, so you can imagine how the drifts begin to pile up. 

I own two cars: a 2006 Toyota Corolla and a 2012 Ford Edge. I’ve owned the Corolla for eight years, the Edge for about eight months. The Corolla is great on gas, but horrible in the snow.

So on Wednesday, I drove the Ford. Excellent decision.

When I came upon a Townsend Township plow stuck in a 5-foot snow drift on Fuller Road, there were three or four pickups stopped in the road. They were all Fords, and nothing smaller than an F-250.

I felt like I fit in quite well with my fancy little mid-size Ford Edge, which, I’ll add, gets a ringing endorsement for its handling in horrible weather. “What the hell are you doing out here in that thing?” one farmer asked.

I grabbed my camera and started snapping pictures, because we all know newspaper readers love weather photos. I popped off a few shots of the backhoe yanking out the plow, when behind me I heard this low roar. It was getting closer.

I turned around and saw the trademark green of a John Deere coming straight at me. On the front of the tractor was a snowblower contraption that could have sucked up a Volkswagen. Or a Toyota Corolla. “That’s Andy,” one guy said.

Where did Andy get such a cool toy?

“He works on a farm,” the guy said.

“Where can I get one of those?” I asked. They chuckled, and one of them randomly said, “We’re headed to the hunting club after this.”

Farmer Andy cleared the road in one fell swoop, and the backhoe pulled out the plow truck. I followed the plow up the road. It was smooth sailing from there.

The point of all this: Townsend Township is a very cool place, and I highly recommend driving on country roads in a blizzard if you own an American car.

Because if the Ford doesn’t pull through, the farmers will.

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