I actually have been sitting here for around the past 30 minutes trying to come up with a title to this weeks entry. The obvious theme is the fact that little has changed. However, I was struggling with the best word(s) to use. So I went back through the previous entries for some guidance and it did not take long at all for me to realize that I should avoid the word “steady”! A little bit of help, but not quite what I was looking for. A bit more sitting here and then I decided to just start writing the actual entry with hopes the title would come to me. At that very moment, the title came, so here I am!
The biggest event up here for me in the past 7 days has been the arrival back home of the girls. They got back Tuesday, safe and sound, from their trip and it was great to have them home. The remainder of the week was spent in a fairly relaxed mode. I had my regular work to do, but other than that, we all just sort of took it easy and enjoyed their spring break.
The weather was rather unspectacular. We did pick up around 4″ of snow Monday and then things were quiet for the rest of the week. Cool temps prevailed through most of the week as well, with the exception being Thursday when we had a one day warm up to 52 degrees. Along with the sunshine, it gave a little taste of spring, but was quickly shut down by temps only in the 20’s Friday. There were thoughts that a fairly large snow event would hit on Saturday, but it decided to jog just to our south and impact the southern/eastern UP, as well as central MN and northern WI with it’s 5-10″+ snows.
This time of the year, a storm like that always brings about mixed emotions, as I still love a big snow as much as I would any time of the year, but it also just delays the arrival of bare ground by a few more days. I did have plans to play in the new snow, but after awaking to just a dusting and light snow falling Saturday morning, the riding was called off and the crew that was to ride ended up meeting for lunch instead.
It did end up snowing the rest of the day and the final total by sunset was 3.5″, but still not enough to make the concrete snow much fun to play in. It was a pretty quiet night last night and then today we got into some lake effect snow. Around midday, a small-scale Bayfield Bomber even set up and gave us a brief period of heavy snow. Between the lighter lake effect in the morning and the burst of heavier snow around midday, we ended up with another 3.5″ for the day today. I suppose there is probably enough fresh snow on top of the old to make for some OK riding, but with tomorrow being a work day for me and no plans made to ride with anyone today, I stayed in.
Going forward this week, it looks like a little bit of fresh snow from time to time, but again the heaviest snows look to pass off to the south of us. Not just a tiny bit, but around 200 miles. In a bit of a “twist the knife” move, Mother Nature is going to hit some areas that saw the least about of snow (vs. average) this season with one, possibly two. So if you are reading this from places like central WI and northern MI, be prepared to see some snow. Perhaps as much or more than you have seen all season!
In a way, I feel a bit of redemption, as those areas were really the main stand outs for not being in the ballpark on my seasonal forecast. If both snow events do strike as indicated, then my ideas presented in my seasonal forecast put out in October were pretty close to what happened this season. However, having two big snow events in April be the main mechanism for central WI and northern MI getting close to average snows is kind of like having your opponent score the game winning goal on themselves to give you the win.
Anyway, back to things up here. The locals are growing more and more impatient with the lack of melting we have had so far this spring and while I am the only one with any real concerns for the growing potential for some bad flooding from the melt- once it finally does come, I suspect that there will be more and more up here joining me in that concern. I am not so much concerned for our house flooding. We have no basement or even crawl space and the buildings are all up at least 1-2 feet higher than the rest of the ground around us. So our chances are quite small for flooding, but not zero, but there are a number of places up here were it does not take too much to flood in the spring and with around 4-5″ of water locked up in the snow right now, the chances for that only grow with each passing day and no melting.
The other downside to having so much snow still on the ground is that it is hard on the animals of the woods. There has been a pretty regular stream of chickadees to the feeder the girls put up and we took a drive to Jacobsville on Friday and I have never seen so many deer hanging out down there. I will admit to not getting down that way a lot in the wintertime, but it was not only Jacobsville where the deer seemed to be more plentiful. We met up with friends for dinner in Eagle Harbor on Saturday and the deer in town were also more numerous than I have ever seen. There were even a few using the frozen harbor as a pathway for transportation. I hope they do not keep that up too much longer, or trouble is bound to find them.
I suppose a few of you might be wondering why I say it is not good for the animals of the woods right now, but yet I talk about so many being seen. That is because the deer “yard up” in the lower snow areas in the winter and will forage there because the lower amounts of snow make it easier on them. However, by this time of the year, the snow has typically melted enough to allow them to spread out a bit and find new areas for food. With all of this snow, they are all still in the same confined spots and the food sources are growing more and more scarce. Its not a good sign when you see they have been eating things like pine trees, as that is typically one of the last things on their list of choices.
I guess the good news for them would be that in about 2 weeks, the snow should be mostly gone. That kind of rapid melt could lead to flooding, but that is not a concern to them. Just finding food.
I guess that about covers it for this one. I suspect that it will be another week of not much to talk about, as the weather looks to be fairly tranquil and little in the way of snow loss is seen. Perhaps a good week to finally get into the shop and start making sawdust!
Good night from the Keweenaw..