Vermont's recovery was daunting enough, but winter gives it special urgency. The state has only two and a half months to repair hundreds of roads and dozens of bridges that were washed away by Hurricane Irene before winter sets in and makes work impossible. Many of the roads ran alongside rivers, and large stretches of them are completely destroyed. They must be fixed before equipment can be brought in to repair homes and infrastructure. In the meantime, residents have cut their own roads through fields, and state workers have laid down temporary gravel roads to reach cut-off towns.