First snow of the season

On Saturday we were perspiring in temperatures in the mid-80s with 70% humidity. Sunday we were enclosed in an aluminum tube all day. Monday we had our first snow of the season. Not much, only about half an inch. Thursday it snowed again, and it’s been snowing off-an-on since then. Again, not much. There might be a total of two inches of accumulation.

In Summer, we got a huge new deck. A little under half of it is covered with a roof, 17 feet wide, and 24 feet long. It’s been a godsend in this rainy climate. It’s very nice to sit on the deck while the rain falls impotently around us. I wanted a peaked roof, but Mrs. L.A. insisted on a flat one because it would be cheaper. Six posts support it, such that one end overlaps the house’s roof, a couple of feet above that level. There’s a corner, so making an attached roof would have been problematic. The deck roof slopes downward toward the yard.

Here’s the thing: It can be a little breezy here. One day, rain blew in from the high end of the roof, and wetted our chairs. One day. But the snow is lighter than rain. It blows in from the high end, both sides, and the low end. The covered part of the deck is coated with a dusting of fine snow, like powdered sugar on a doughnut. The chairs are dusted, the upholstered furniture is dusted, and there’s a dusting on the propane fireplace, the covered gas grill, and the rolling cutting board/cabinet. But the snow is supposed to turn to rain, so it should be gone soon.

We didn’t have Winter the last two years because of El Niño. This year we’re back to a ‘normal’ weather pattern. So there will be more snow to come.

Actually, we’re in a La Nina weather pattern in the PNW this year, which means colder and wetter. I’m not sure what constitutes ‘normal’ here. We got about an inch at the lower elevations here, and several inches in the hills, followed by freezing rain which turned the city into a skating rink and shut down public transit and the schools. We’re now in a gradual warming trend (it’s 35F right now) and whatever is left of the snow/ice should be gone by this evening. It’s amusing to me to see a city shut down with so little cause, but they’re really not equipped for these sorts of events.

According to the last I heard from meteorologist Cliff Mass (UW Atmospheric Sciences), La Niña could bring colder and wetter weather, or it could just bring ‘normal’ weather. Right now, it seems pretty close to normal. In the past, I remember snow around Thanksgiving, then none until Winter proper. This light snow seems within ‘normal’ parameters.

It’s 32ºF up here. I went to the corner market for potatoes (Saturday, so I need to make hashbrowns), and the roads are icy. Not good in a Prius. But engine braking (‘B’ on the transmission selector) kept me from sliding through the stop signs. I was surprised the car made it up the hill from the beach. That doesn’t always happen when it snows.

Look into some kind of hanging sides for your deck. I used to use (back when I was young and [del]cheap[/del] classy) tarps. I would hang them from hooks on the top beams, and enclose the sides. You might want to look into thick, clear plastic siding that is made for this purpose. Hang them up and get an enclosed deck. You can either roll them up when not in use, or take them down entirely.

I just got back from Hawai’i last night. Flew into Portland. 33 and rain/icy rain. My daughter was still in her shorts and t-shirt (she insisted). :stuck_out_tongue: I like the rain, but that was a heck of a drive from the airport. We missed snow here at the house, but apparently it will be back soon. Good thing the kids like snow just as much as sand!

Yesterday was nice. We had sun, and virtually all of the snow had melted in the warm night.

This morning, the deck under the roof was covered with snow again, and it was thicker than on Saturday. I thought I’d take a lunch break today so I could go to town (50 mile round trip) to get some cat food. I don’t know, man… The Prius doesn’t like snow. Maybe I can take the Jeep, once the wife goes to work. I hope she can figure out how to put it into 4WD. (I’ve never looked into it, and she certainly hasn’t.)

We’ve had 15 cm (6") since Sunday night and another 2cm predicted for tonight. The plows are out for the first time this winter, but not having them out till Dec. 13 is decidedly unusual. On the other hand it is predicted to go to -19C (about -2F) Thursday night.