Winter wonders

?Top: Phyllis Richert photo. Bottom: Don Ratzlaff / Free Press

Winter made its presence known in a big way this past week as both beauty and beast. The beautiful side appeared in hoarfrost (top photo)?the frozen dew found on vegetation in the early morning?and a gentle 6-inch blanket of snow last Monday night that resulted in the postponement of high school basketball games and other activities. Accompanying the precipitation were beastly cold temperatures and wind chill?including a 5 degree reading this Monday on the Emprise Bank outdoor thermometer in Hillsboro (left). Forecasters were predicting temperatures in the mid-40s on Christmas Day, a disappointment for those wishing for a white Christmas, but good news for people who plan to travel, and those tired of the frigid conditions.

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