Spring Fever

That is my excuse for not writing Sunday and yesterday. I got ready to write on Sunday, but with temps in the low 60’s and loads of sunshine, I just could not find the ambition to be inside and write an entry. I actually got as far as sitting down to write yesterday, but the same thing happened, along with a bit of writers block, so I decided to put it off another day. Today is a pretty nice day in its own right, but I should not keep putting this off, so here I am.

After all the beautiful spring weather we have had the past 4-5 days, it seems strange to think back to the last time I wrote and how we were just getting into the big storm that hit the northern Midwest from the 13th to the 16th. Our snow actually persisted through Tuesday and by the time all was said and done, totals from it were 22″ at our place and similar amounts in much of the rest of the region. The snows from that storm did two things: First, it put me over the 300″ mark for the season. Something that back in mid-February I thought was pretty out of reach. Secondly, it put my depth at 45″ on the ground Tuesday, which was the deepest depth of the season as well. All pretty amazing feats given the fact that it happened the middle of April. Even in this land known for very snowy winters, it is unusual to have that kind of a storm in April come and even more unusual for it to come with us still having 3 feet on the ground.

Another interesting thing was how long it took for us to get into the main snow with the storm. Areas to our south had been getting pounded for 2-3 days before we started to see any real accumulations. Some areas a little to the west-northwest of Green Bay picked up 36″ of snow before we had even seen 3″. It did intensify over us as we went through the evening and overnight hours Sunday and by daybreak Monday morning, we had picked up around a foot of new snow, enough to have to fire up Big Red and give the driveway and parking area a clearing.

Schools had been canceled for Monday back on Sunday afternoon- in anticipation of the snow and the winds. We had winds of 20-30 mph with higher gusts and some of my friends that live in the more open areas up here had 3-5 foot drifts to contend with Monday. So the early cancellation of school was a great idea. It snowed pretty steadily up this way Monday and into Monday night and we picked up another 11″ of snow or so and the look of things on Tuesday gave the appearance that I had not touched the snow the day before, but I swear that I did clear the driveway and brushed the snow off the truck on Monday.

These big late season storms sure can mess with ones mind. Even though we had been exceptionally cool for March and April prior to the storm, which had keep a lot of snow lingering until the storm hit. There had been some melting and it was at least trying to look a bit like spring around here. However, the look of things on Tuesday looked very much like the middle to end of January.

No matter the time of the year, the driveway and parking area needed another clearing, so I got going on that and had ours as well as the neighbors driveway done by mid-morning and then let the pups out to inspect things. One of the more amazing things about that last photograph is actually what you cannot see. That would be Grace’s swing set, which was under the snow in the background of that last shot. Between all of the snow that had fallen for the season, plus the snow that was put there by Big Red’s blower, it was around 8 feet deep and completely buried the swing set.

Another thing that disappeared due to all the snow this winter was my view out the shop windows. Much of the reason for that was due to the fact that when the shop roof clears, it piles up just outside of the windows, but none the less, the snow was level with the roof eave, which is about 9-10 feet there. Since those pics were taken, both the top of the swing set and the view out the window have re-appeared.

Another crazy photo op presented itself on Thursday, as Grace and I were coming home from the hardware store in Calumet. As we passed the football stadium, I noticed that they had cleared the track that goes around the field. However, the true depth of the snow there had not been made clear until we reached the east end of the track, where a vehicle was sitting. My jaw dropped at how deep the snow was there! There were some shots put out on social media of the track, but they did not go as viral as I thought they might. At any rate, here is the view of the track and vehicle parked on it and here is what the start of track season in the Keweenaw looks like. That last one is courtesy of the Calumet High School Facebook page.

As wintry as the weather was early in the week, it was equally as spring-like by the end of the week. We hit the 50’s and had loads of sunshine and even warmed to 63 at our place Sunday and 64 yesterday. There has been a dramatic snow loss in the past 4-5 days, but with most of the night time temps dropping into the 20’s, the region has been able to avoid any serious flooding so far. When I took my snow core sample last Tuesday, it had 6.6″ of moisture in it, meaning that if you melted all the snow on the ground, it would yield 6.6″ of water. My core sample taken this morning is still melting, but it will be interesting to see how much moisture has already left the snow pack.

Gracie enjoyed the snow-day and the snow itself, but was also busy working on a project for school. Its her first really big project and she has been working very hard. They each have to do a biography of someone and create a poster board, as well as give a speech. She is doing her report on Thomas Edison and it has been fun to watch her work on it. With her poster board done and it being the warmest day of the season so far, yesterday afternoon was spent in the great outdoors, which included Gracie riding her zip line. Kind of hard to see her in that shot, as her feet were barely above the snowcover, but she is in there!

With the snow depth still at a solid 2 feet in our woods, none of the larger woodland creatures have returned. The deer are still held up in their winter yarding areas. The bear are probably still sleeping, or are just now waking up with the warmer temps we have had. I did see a coyote run through the neighborhood the other day and just yesterday, Nora snapped this shot of this bugger heading across the street. My apologies, but Nora did not stop to ask it why it was crossing the road. So that will have to remain a mystery!

So I guess that about gets you caught up with the events of the past 9 days. I will be sure to keep my eyes out for the emergence of the waterfalls up here. Many of them are not even reachable right now, but the few that can be driven to are still largely frozen over. With the forecast looking like more 60’s by the weekend, maybe even a 70 by early next week, that should get them flowing pretty good.

Goodnight from the Keweenaw..