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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Wind Driven Snow

One of the hazards we face by living in the mountains is wind. We have had wind for several days with gusts to 60-80 MPH and blowing snow. It is supposed to be even more windy today and tomorrow. Tomorrow more snow is forecast and the wind is predicted to be stronger. Two or three inches of snow when you add the wind as a factor will produce drifts several feet deep especially along roads that have a snow bank on each side. That makes them collectors for drifting snow.

We needed to go to town yesterday to resupply and two attempts to get down off the mountain were not successful due to the drifting snow. Both times we had to turn back. We might have been able to get out but even when I turned back the tracks left by our Jeep tires had already filled in within minutes. We have seen it drift a road in two or three feet deep in a few hours. So we will make another attempt today and see how far we can get.

It is not so much getting out but getting back home after we have made it to the paved road about 12 miles from our house we still need to return. With the wind chill down to sub zero temperatures and the snow and ice crystals blowing so hard it hurts when it hits you - getting to town is not worth the risk. We receive a lot of wind in the winter in the mountains and when you add a little snow suddenly you get instant drifts.

Just part of living in the mountains and that is why we maintain a well stocked pantry. It is also a good reason to have a wood stove for heat because normally the power goes off due to power poles blowing over or trees blowing over and taking down power lines. All our power lines are under ground but those that feed our area go right along the mountain top and are more vulnerable to wind. Just part of mountain living and something you adjust to or you move back to the city where you are not effected by the wind as badly. It is not always windy here but much of the time we will have a week or two of high wind. This is one of those times. If you don't care much for wind this would not be the right location for you.

So cope we will, and being prepared if we can't get out safely today we will try again tomorrow and if not then it will be next week some time. Just part of living on a mountain.


Bruce said...

UPDATE: Made the attempt again and 2' drifts across the road. Either later today or next week.

Robert said...

Sounds pretty rough & tough to me. My weather was quite different. Eight guys came over and we played tennis in shorts and tee shirts in 80 degree weather. It was absolutely perfect weather. NO SNOW DRIFTS HERE! NO SNOW TOMORROW EITHER!

Carol said...

Hahahaha, Robert. No sweat, no sunburn here!!! :)+

Barbara said...

And here we are having a very mild winter (I hate saying that)! Please dear God, don't change that for us! Be safe Bruce and Carol! I'm glad you have enough to eat and a good wood stove to keep your toes warm! Hug the dogs! Barbara

Bruce said...

Finally got out today, but it was pretty dicey coming home. Just part of living in the mountains and coping with snow and wind driven snow.