Monday, January 12, 2009

Disappointment reigns

Does this look like 10 inches of snow to you? It doesn’t look like 10 inches of snow to me either.

I should have listened to my instincts on this one. Friday night around 10:30 p.m. I was walking through the woods, back to the cabin, after working at the ski resort. The winter sky was clear and the nearly full moon was high overhead. The stars were out and twinkling brightly. It wasn’t even the kind of sky where high, thin cirrus clouds veil the moon and stars to some extent. None of that. It was perfectly clear. It sure didn’t look then as though I’d be seeing snow start to fall in just 6-7 hours.

But, I told myself, it’s a "clipper" system. They move fast. Just because no clouds are here now doesn’t mean there won’t be any. And perhaps the forecast is off by a few hours about when this storm is to reach my doorstep.

The next morning I awake to no snow and few clouds. The birds arrived at my feeders on schedule and ate the seed as usual—no feeding frenzy. If 10 inches of snow were about to arrive, I could expect to see that shark-like feeding frenzy the birds exhibit just ahead of bad weather. I didn’t see it.

I did get some more ice, as you can see from this morning’s photo, though even that was barely enough to count. Ten inches of snow would equate to at least one inch of rain, and all the precipitation I got would amount to no more than a sprinkle. This forecast was way off, but I should have known better. This time my eagerness to see a reasonable amount of snow overrode what my instincts and observations were telling me. I should know better. Next time I won’t be fooled so easily.


Cicero Sings said...

Forecasters these days! My husband was one (retired) and he shakes his head at what is coming down the tubes these days.

Weather can be rather "unpredictable" and even the best forecasters can misjudge what is going to happen but ... !! Sometimes these guys aren't even close ... and don't even amend their forecasts when current weather shows otherwise! And that's on this side of the continent.

Lynne said...

I think we must be getting your snow. Our forecast said a light dusting but we've gotten several inches and there is no sign of it letting up.

Carolyn H said...

Cicero: The weather this winter has certainly been unpredicted a lot this year. I can see being off with the degrees of temeperature, especially when it's right around freezing, but there's a big difference between a trace of precipitaion and an inch of it! oh, well.

Lynne: The weird part here is that it's really pretty cold, but somehow it rains anyway. This last time it rained when it was 26-28 degrees. boy, does that one make for a mess!

Carolyn H.

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

Don't feel bad…the hair-sprayed weather oracles here (SW Ohio) claimed snow for Thursday, Friday, then Saturday—one hundred percent! (They kept moving the day ahead when their predictions for the day before didn't pan out.) Several inches were on the way, no kidding, get ready, make or alter plans as necessary, heed our warning!


We finally received about an inch last night (weather oracles said expect a half-inch) and that was it. And I had myself all geared up for snow, just as you did. What a bummer!

I, too, took some late evening ambles, gazed up at the starlit sky, thought—doesn't look and feel like snow to me—discounted my own instincts, and not only got disappointed, but felt like I'd been suckered.

Sometimes, I wish the weather folks would just step outside the station, look at the sky, ground, and nearby trees. At least they could then tell whether it was clear or cloudy, wet, dry, snowing, sleeting, raining, and if the wind was blowing.

Plus a performance improvement like that ought to make 'em eligible for a raise! So we'd all be happier.

greentangle said...

To think I was bummed out about not getting the inch or two that was forecast for this morning. I think I'd like to go back to the days of no forecasts (except for hurricanes and tornadoes) so snow is always a pleasant surprise instead of an expectation.

But I shouldn't complain--we had our 5th snowiest December and a nice cold spell coming this week.

Carolyn H said...

TGBSISH: You're not the only one who got suckered by the latest forecast! I do need to learn not to question what I know as much, though.

Greentangle: Funny, I was thinking the same thing about forecasts--I do want to know about tornados and hurricanes, though. And I do like some idea of when those big heat waves are going to break. I feel cooler just thinking about the weather breaking the next day. But other than that, tose forecasters are now dead to me.

Carolyn H.

Cathy said...

Well I got about 4-5 inches up here on Sat. However, I was expecting more since Friday I had one my famous "it's going to do something" headaches.

And yes too, I was disappointed to wake up to find no snow on the ground. I didn't want to go to work. Then again, I only work an hour.