By Bob Spiwak
It is 9:30 a.m. Monday (Jan. 12). The fog has been enveloping us all week, occasionally peppered by light snowfalls. Living on the coast years ago, we would measure the amount of fog by utility poles. A three- or four-pole “fogger” at the limit of visibility represented the area where even car headlights were not visible.
Coming back from Mazama this morning, the visibility was pretty much at three poles, except where the river runs close to the road and the murk got thicker.
The snow has been minimal; NOAA’s predictions of less than half an inch have generally been accurate throughout the week. Here in West Boesel there is an inch or two of ice now sandwiched between snowfalls. Walking on it is sometimes a plunge of foot or feet down into the 18-inch base layer. Other times an entire slab of ice, sometimes a foot or more in length, goes down like a snowshoe under foot.
My neighbor Gary and I are both concerned with the Packers’ win over Dallas yesterday. This is because we are both Green Bay Packer fans and The Pack will be playing the Hawks in Seattle this coming weekend. Statistically this bodes ill for the Wisconsin guys because Seattle is so good at home. This being the championship game, and our quarterback Aaron Rodgers with a bum leg, it does not look good for any heavy-duty wagering.
The snow at Harts Pass has diminished a bit from 80 to 73 inches and the water content also has lessened from 125 percent to 118 percent over the week past. The weather is much milder than normal, even at 6,500 feet.
Jack Holden, an expatriate Mazaman, is a scientist and science buff of many disciplines. It was he who created the Stop Continental Drift Society, which in its day had worldwide members. His latest contribution to our climatic well being is the information that the days are now increasing by three minutes each, and it will not be long before the daylight is lengthened to five minutes. This is of great importance, and easily notable for all in the Methow who live among the mountains and can daily note an area when the sun is lost. That is, if the fog, snow and clouds are not too thick. Conversely, it comes as a pleasant surprise to see sunshine some familiar place where there was none days or weeks before. Thanks for the info, Jack.
This Thursday (Jan. 15) promises to be a big night at the North Cascades Basecamp for Nordic skiers. You might want to get there early for a seat for Don Portman’s presentation of the sport’s history here in the Methow. Don was one of the pioneers and is still at it. Dave Chantler was another. He tied in REI, where he worked, as a participant for Nordic skiing at Sun Mountain.
The basecamp had 75 people for last week’s screening of a film about the removal of the Elwha Dam and the crowd could be bigger with Portman’s program this week. Bread and soup will begin at 5:30 p.m., the program at 6 p.m.; cost is $5.