First Snow (Nov 7) fell under my feet

Nov 7, 2012 – Some hint of a beginning of winter for inland Northern California…

Cold ground this morning.

From Intellicast, for Humboldt County, CA’s interior:

Winter Weather Advisory
CAZ003-004-076-090045-
/O.CON.KEKA.WW.Y.0015.000000T0000Z-121109T1200Z/
NORTH COAST INTERIOR-UPPER TRINITY RIVER-MENDOCINO INTERIOR-
842 AM PST THU NOV 8 2012

…WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 4 AM PST
FRIDAY ABOVE 3000 FEET…

A WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY ABOVE 3000 FEET REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL
4 AM PST FRIDAY.

* SNOW ACCUMULATIONS…3 TO 6 INCHES ABOVE 3500 FEET. LOCALIZED 
AMOUNTS OF 1 TO 3 INCHES DOWN TO 2500 FEET TODAY AND TONIGHT. 

* TIMING…SNOW BEGINNING TODAY WITH SNOW SHOWERS CONTINUING
THROUGH THURSDAY NIGHT.

* LOCATIONS…INTERIOR DEL NORTE…INTERIOR HUMBOLDT…INTERIOR
MENDOCINO…AND TRINITY COUNTIES.

* HIGHWAYS/PASSES IMPACTED…PASSES ALONG HIGHWAYS 36…3…162
AND 299 WILL BE IMPACTED AS SNOW LEVELS FALL TODAY.”

Just the beginning?

On a side-note, on a couple occasions this summer, I have uttered a prediction that this winter might very well turn epic cold and snowy for both Northern California and Western Europe.  Not exactly scientific, as I base that whimsical prediction solely on one anecdotal suggestion more than anything.  The key ingredient is the fact that last time the Greenland ice cap had a major thaw, such as seen there this past summer (2012), was in 1889.  Well, given the Arctic might have a much bigger influence on climate (and its inherent weather swings), the winter that followed was very unusual too, as illustrated by this historical record from Shasta, not that far from here as the crow flies:

The Hard Winter of 1889-1890″ by May H. Southern. The Covered Wagon (Shasta Historical Society), 1966, pp. 9-11. [emphasis and comments is mine]

EXCERPTS FROM THE DIARY OF MAY H. SOUTHERN as Published in The Searchlight April 7, 1932.

THE BALMY SPRING WEATHER now prevailing in this section following the winter storms which brought bounteous snowfall to Shasta County and the rest of northern California, makes Miss May H. Southern of the Shasta Historical Society reminiscent. She declared yesterday that last winter was as mild as a zephyr when compared to that of 1889 and 1890.

Miss Southern was a Southern Pacific telegrapher stationed at Sims on the Shasta division that winter. Excerpts from her diary follow:

“Winter set in October 20, with heavy rains.  [in 2012, the first truly significant rain began on October 21]   October 30. Train service irregular, landslides numerous, large forces clearing track. By the middle of November unusual amount of rain would have caused great damage by high water if there had been any snow on the ground.

“December 10. Crests of mountains mantled with deep snow. Lower levels white with a promise of what was yet to come. Torrential rains caused washouts and slides, travel unsafe and uncertain. Next few weeks brought terrific rains all through northern California. Railroad bridge at Cottonwood greatly damaged, delayed trains three days. Great damage to bridges and trestles around Colusa, Chico, and Marysville, one-third of the 242 miles of track between Cottonwood and San Francisco washed away or badly damaged, several persons drowned.

January 15, 1890. Bumper crop of snow began arriving–snowing furiously, like twilight, two feet on the ground this morning. Train 15 crept northward in the teeth of the fiercest snow storm that ever roared down the Sacramento canyon; stalled at Tunnel 11, mile and a half north of Sims; 116 passengers on board, Vice-President C. F. Crocker’s private car ‘Mishawauka’ attached to rear. Snowed incessantly for over sixty hours, fell so fast and furiously the river covered over; reached a depth of eight feet on level, much deeper in drifts.

“Food in diner and Crocker car soon exhausted. Pullman porters carried food on their backs from Sims to feed women and children. My mother started to bake bread day and night as long as flour lasted. Brakeman in Crocker car with pneumonia.

“Problem of heat serious, wood water-logged and buried under snow, coal and candles soon exhausted, darkness made more dismal by howling of panthers, coyotes, and other night animals driven by the snow to seek food lower down. Deer often seen bounding into river pursued by a panther.”

Food becoming scarce, my father slaughtering stock and killing off chickens, complaints of passengers loud and long, cursing the country, the company, and Mr. J. Pluvius. Wires dead, cut off from world. Linemen coming in speechless and half frozen. [...]“

READ more at SOURCE: http://www.siskiyous.edu/library/shasta/documents/hardwinter.pdf

But it’s likely to be its very own unique winter this year.  After all, the eastern US already has a winter, which wasn’t the case then.  For the eastern half of the US, the winter of 1889-1890 remained unusually warm (see here).  Western Europe had one of the strongest winters on record, and there also was a ‘Russian Flu’ pandemic (see here).  

7:30 pm – And here’s some snow falling down tonite:

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One Response to First Snow (Nov 7) fell under my feet

  1. Pingback: Global Cooling ahead? (w/ Global Annual Average Temperature Anomalies, Ocean Heat Content mystery, Solar Cycle 24-25,…) | Not All Alleged Is Apparent…

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