Winter and why you should stay inside and drink our beer…

The alarm rings. It is 7 a.m. again this morning. I wake up with a big yawn and a nice ball scratch. As I am grabbing my morning tea I take a peek outside to see what mother nature has done that previous night. FUCK! It snowed, and it snowed a lot. Today shall be fun…

Winter is a time of joy and cheerful giving. At the production facility of IHB we have a different outlook on what the wicked winter does to us. In Ellensburg the winters are cold, very cold. With the cold comes the freeze. Everything gets a thick sheet of ice on it. Kegs become ice bombs of terror. They need hours to thaw or multiple cleaning cycles to get clean. That may not seem like that big of a pain-in-the-ass but when you are dealing with hundreds of kegs a day it gets a wee bit obnoxious. This isn’t including the fact that our forklift, that beautiful big beast, can’t run for shit in the snow. It is like driving a Honda accord across Snoqualmie Pass. In other words impossible. Thanks again mother nature.

A new problem that we had to deal with this winter was our spent grain silo freezing at the bottom. This led to the silo becoming clogged so much so that a local farmer could not get the grain out to feed his cattle (poor cows). What was the solution you ask? Well we had to take down a guard on the silo which entailed climbing into a trailer and setting up a ladder inside the trailer to get at the frozen grain. Hot water and a bit of man muscle and it popped that clog like a clogged toilet. It was about 8 degrees which made it a cold and messy endeavor.

One of the mystery at IHB is the curse of the winter. The year of 2015 it was the bottler. We had to cart the insufferable machine to Pasco, Washington to get her all revamped. Let’s just say packaging that year was a testament to work hard play harder. With the chaos that came from that we moved into 2016 with hopes that the next winter would be free of machine malfunctions. Fast forward to the winter of 2016. Low and behold another machine is broken down but alas it was not a packaging machine but our all too important centrifuge shat the bed. We are still hurting from this breakdown and are all daydreaming our way to summer.

All in all screw the winter. Snowboarding is cool though. That is all.

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