Bend’s had a low precip winter through January, now finally getting a wave of storms. Over three days we got a good few feet…
First visit up to the mountain this season – Twas a lovely 50F, summit lift open, great afternoon had by all.
I’ve got a lot more photos, expect a followup post!
We had a unusually exciting Monday due to some freak weather conditions. The day started with over and inch of snow – on this tax day – having begun falling before I woke and continuing a couple hours into my morning at work. I was feeling meteorologically inclined today, so here’s a blog post about the weather!
That’s the view from my office window, no mountains to be seen today!
A good breeze brought the sun, melting everywhere but the tiny shadowy corners by maybe 3pm.
This was followed up by another storm front, dropping an hour of really good graupel. Yep, you read that right. It’s a fairly complex phenomena to describe, here’s a Warticle about it. Supercooled water vapor latches rapidly onto snowflakes, turning into a soft styrofoam-like hail.
It’s really unique when it gets deep. Eventually the pellets changed over to a light snow, but not before coating all the streets over again.
I decided to share the graupel with our flock. The reception was inquisitive and exuberant.
You’ll notice they’ve become rather gangling and bristly since their last appearance on this blog 🙂 Jaeda however…it didn’t amuse her. I think she was also disappointed by my graupelman
Also the word graupel is pretty great.
Got back from visiting family in Reno, I’ll get a bunch of photos up. These are of Ruby and Bodhi with their flock 🙂
View from the 15th floor out West from downtown, snowstorms rolling in.
I’ve decided that among various spectator sports, watching bad drivers from the comfort of my living room is one of the most amusing. Here’s a video of some fella in a rear-wheel suv burning away rubber for a good four minutes. Keep in mind that all day dozens of cars had made it easily up our hill thanks to their driving skills.
As a followup to my previous post, here’s a short video of a few cars being defeated by a light dusting of snow.
It’s official: People in Omaha don’t know how to drive in snow.
It’s an odd realization to come too, since this place is rather snowy in the winter…big midwest snowstorms that roll in and don’t melt for weeks.This impressive discovery was made from the convenience of my own home, indeed via the double windows directly behind me as I stand here at my desk. Said windows look out upon our hilly road, thusly:
Keep in mind that this picture was taken nearly a week after the snowstorm. There’s still ice on the road. Temperatures had yet to rise above the mid-twenties, even in the sunny afternoons…with nights as low as 2 degrees.The result of this, of course, being that the road ice hasn’t melted.
For this last week, the spectacle on the street has been both reliable and hilarious. Cars try to make it up the street with drivers clueless about both driving technique and apparently the laws of physics…especially those governing inertia and friction. The disheartening part, is that some of these people are literally doing damage to their vehicles…gunning the engine, wheels spinning at 70mph,melting troughs in the ice until their wheels are spinning on pavement, thick clouds of rubber smoke pouring out as their vehicle sits in place. This is almost exclusively sedans and minivans. The 4×4 folks crawl their way up our hill like it was a pleasant summer day.
I can’t say that all Omahans are clueless either. There’s the few vehicles that take the hill at a steady speed, and those with light feet who don’t let themselves lose traction in the first place. It’s unfortunate how many are clueless though, and end up sideways in front of our house, sliding backwards while still gunning the engine…creating polished slick patches for the next car.
It’s not just our street either. On a trip to Iowa over the weekend,we saw dozens of abandoned vehicles strewn across medians, some looking like they rolled or hit other vehicles. Facebook was abuzz with people who got into accidents. Even our own little Honda was briefly uncontrollable, mere feet from our driveway.
It makes me want to take a step back and look at the bigger picture. Why were there lines at McDonalds? Crowds at the movie theater? People traveling at all?
This seems to be more of a phychological…or perhaps sociological…issue. People look outside and know that roads are dangerous. Cars accidents are already a leading cause of death and injury nationwide and that accidents are far more likely in bad weather. So why do people travel? Why do they feel that a Big Mac is worth risking a car accident? Is the increase in risk not fully perceived when making the decision? Do rational people weigh this type of danger low because of faulty logic, car commercials, or overconfidence? Do car drivers know when they’re approaching my house, their vehicle can’t possibly make it up the hill, but try anyway…or are they oblivious?
This little sideshow out front has allowed me to witness human decision-making in its most primal form. I can see the faces of those people; extreme panic, anger, frustration…I can see their decision process as they gun the engine, as they sit and pause to think, as they look around them for ways to either u-turn or tackle the challenge. It’s an interesting glimpse at the base decisionmaking that people make, and I certainly am in those places myself, all the time. What is most interesting, is how each driver is so different. Every person makes thousands of small and large decisions every day, and I get a perfect closed arena to experience this diversity of decisions, right from my window.
Decided to record some of my Skyrim play the other day. Here’s a video of me completing a dungeon. The recording software (fraps) did a decent job, but recorded the game a tad choppy during some of the fights.
I think i’ll make another video soon of some more diverse gameplay, incase me crawling through a dungeon proves too uninteresting.