08 January 2009

blow and snow

The last three days have been fine expressions of winter in the Blue Ridge (at least as I understand from oral histories, i.e., the folks at Farmers Supply). Grey but with occasional although rare burst of sun raking the forests, hovering around freezing, moving neither to warmth or frigidity, humid enough to form fog, rain or snow.

Perhaps it is because the house sits on a ridge, or because we are in the mountains, but the winds, gusts and gales even out-do Santa Fe. It has blown for nearly 40 consecutive hours now, and the gusts can shake the entire house - or simply cause the windows to groan. Once we can afford the equipment, a wind generator is high on our priorities for future independence.

The wind blew away the fog and propelled sheets of rain yesterday and the day before (over an inch of horizontal rain). This region is, in theory and government assessment, in the throes of a drought but with five weeks of data, that seems impossible. Last night as the temperature refused to drop much below freezing, finally a light, granular snow fell, the first of the winter. Like many places in America and Scotland, it does not snow here with the authority & vigor it did forty or fifty years ago. I've heard tell of a Floyd county winter in the early 1960s when the drifts went up to the eaves of the houses; now an entire winter can pass without a significant accumulation.

Today the winds are forecast to continue to blow but the temperatures are on strike and refuse to move either way. Friday should be sunny and with some encouragement, the mercury may rise to 50F. Hmmm, warm enough to put the outdoor holiday lights up!

No comments: