Category Archives: Weather

Windy Night

The winds were back last night, at least at our house.

Those are the wind chimes that were banging away, with the trees in the background swaying and swishing and whooshing and generally making lots of very loud, spooky noises.

What’s really weird is that a couple of folks at work who live within a couple of miles of here kept getting “HIGH WIND!” alerts on their phone, but it was calm as could be. Meanwhile, when I took out the trash tonight I found that the BBQ has been wandering again. It’s sitting ten feet away from where it was parked, and the big, heavy cover that was on it was nowhere to be seen.

Maybe I’ll borrow a set of chocks from the hangar. If they’re designed to keep a B-52 or C-46 from wandering, maybe they can keep the BBQ in place.

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Cirrus, Moon, Twin Contrails

It’s a simple, common sight.

The moon seen through a broken, high layer of cirrus clouds, the sky being split by two horizon-to-horizon contrails.

Yet how many of us ever stop to admire the beauty of the sight? The subtle, infinite variations of blue and white…

The news is shit, other aspects of our lives may or may not have us ready to run screaming. But with this view, for a couple of minutes at least, perhaps we can push the horror to the side.

Those meditation apps with the weird Australian guys might help also.

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New York, New York (Pictures Day 21)

In summary: New York City had a life of it’s own in my head. In early August 2016, I visited there for the first time. On the first afternoon we visited Central Park and were there for hours, despite the jet lag. Day One started with a tour of the Intrepid and the Space Shuttle Enterprise, followed by the full two and a half hour cruise around Manhattan – south down the Hudson River into the Upper Harbor, up the East River under the “BMW” bridges, past Midtown and the UN, into the Harlem River, back south into the Hudson River, underneath the George Washington Bridge, past Grant’s Tomb, and finally back into port. To finish Day Two we had a death march to find a cab, went to the Mets game, left early only to miss the best part, and inadvertently stiffed a nice cab driver. Bright & early on Day Three we headed out toward Liberty Island – it’s hard to take a bad picture there, then went to Ellis Island. Bank on Manhattan, we went to World Trade Center Museum, which was emotional & grueling. Day Four started out with a trip to Times Square, after which we headed to the Empire State Building. The views of Manhattan were spectacular! Then we went to Yankee Stadium for a game.


Because it was Alex Rodriguez’s final game, there was a huge crowd and a big pre-game ceremony planned. The weather, on the other hand, had other ideas and the grounds crew got ready to roll out the tarp.

And not a moment too soon. We were just a row or two under the 2nd deck overhang, so we were relatively safe from being too soaked.

As the storm moved over the stadium, the winds started roaring (see the flags?) and the underside of the storm cell looked like movie special effects for “all Hell’s going to break loose.”

Despite the fact that it was something like 90 minutes before sunset, it got black as night with thunder rumbling constantly out of the clouds right overhead. Good thing we weren’t sitting right next to a humongous yellow steel pole sticking up in the air a hundred feet or so, right?!!

That sick yellow color on the underside of the clouds doesn’t make you feel better about the situation when 30 seconds before it was pitch black.

ARod was out there trying to be ceremonial. My concern was that he was out there with his family and a few dignitaries while the end of the freakin’ world was rolling in from the west. Don’t they understand what bad PR it would be for ARod and his family to be killed by lightning in the middle of this farewell ceremony?

And these dudes out there warming up? I can only conclude that they wanted to make sure that ARod didn’t get fricasseed alive alone by Thor throwing thunderbolts. Probably a team camaraderie thing. Or they’re really freakin’ stupid, I could go either way.

The skies finally opened up and they cut the ARod ceremony short. See, there IS a god!

The rain passed after a half-hour or so of downpour and the game finally got underway . We almost never leave a ballgame before the end, but we were exhausted and chose to bug out early. Someday I’ll get back to Yankee Stadium and take a more thorough tour, camera in hand.

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Snow To The North

I understand that snow isn’t that big of a deal to most folks – it happens at least every now and then. Even here in La La Land it’s right there in the mountains for several months of every year and you can see the snowy mountains from time to time, and there are ski resorts within a two or three hour drive of downtown LA.

But the snow level doesn’t always get as low as 3,000 feet. When it does, for a couple of days every few years, the lower mountains that surround all of our valleys and coastal areas can get several inches and look picture postcard like for a day or two

Looking north from Camarillo Airport, you can see the mountains north of Ojai, Santa Paula, and Fillmore.

Hines Peak and other smaller mountains in the area go up to about 6,300 feet, more than high enough to pick up some decent snow accumulations.

Beyond them, Mt. Pinos goes up to 8,848′ and can often have snow until late spring.

This morning at the hangar it all looked very scenic. Then an afternoon and evening of soaking rain came and I’m sure the snow will all be gone below about 7,000′ by morning. But for the Sierra and ski resorts up above 10,000′ it will be an excellent start to the ski season!

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Here It Comes

The holidays?

Well, yes, alright. There’s that. I can use the time off. But in about six hours, we’re going to get hit with this:

(Image from NOAA Hi-Def Radar app)

That should make the morning commute just…beyond description.

At least we’re not trying to drive a long way or get on a plane this weekend. Given the multiple large storms hitting the West Coast, Denver, the upper Midwest, New England, it’s going to be a good weekend to shelter in place.

Be safe out there, folks!

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Wind & Fire

The Santa Ana winds have started blowing again in Southern California. (As you no doubt have heard, in Northern California the winds have also been howling and the despicable and criminally stupid officials of PG&E have turned off the power to 1,000,000+ people for several days in order to avoid liability for any brush fires that might be sparked when their horribly poorly maintained system starts breaking and dropping  live power lines into dry brush. But I digress…)

My first reaction when I got home this afternoon was the “Hawkeye Pierce” go-to response for me – humor:

“Wind damage at our house – be strong, we will rebuild!”

This had been hanging by a cup hook but twisting in the 35 to 50 knot winds it had literally unscrewed itself and fallen. Hadn’t seen that before.

Yes, there were a couple of branches down in our yard. And on the way home I had seen three separate spots where streets or business driveways were blocked by fallen trees.

But our power was still on. This barely rose to the level of “inconvenience.” Nothing like everyone who was trying to deal with a multi-day blackout caused by bureaucratic incompetence, greed, and stupidity.

Then the fires started here in SoCal. (Fortunately, nothing near us. We had enough of that shit last year, thank you very much!)

Other areas haven’t been so lucky:

Welcome to California in the era of climate change.

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Purplish Sunsets

Some people have noticed a more purple hue to a lot of sunrises and sunsets recently. This seems to be due (“they” think) to dust and sulfur in the atmosphere from a volcanic eruption in Russia. I noticed it to be very prominent in the sunrises and sunsets when I was out in the desert last month.

Even in the last few days here in LA it’s still a visible effect.

Even when you stop down the lens to not blow out the exposure, it’s still there, although not as saturated.

Nice gradient you’ve got there!

What color is your sunset?

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