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Old 11-29-11, 04:49 PM   #1
Seattle Forrest
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Climatologically, The Worst of Winter is Over!

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Originally Posted by Cliff Mass
Yes, you read that right.

The last week or two of November is climatologically the worst period of the year by many measures.

...

PS: I know "official" winter starts on December 22 and ends in March. The point is that calendar winter is really quite different than meteorological winter in many parts of the country...and we are a good example of that. Around here the end of February could really be considered the end of winter....sun is much stronger, far less weather systems, chance of flooding goes to near zero, etc. And the grass starts growing again on the west side of the Cascades. When I have to mow my lawn, winter is over..period.
The last few years, the worst winter storms came around Thanksgiving. December and January were cold, but not brutally so. This year we have some help from La Niņa. Let's hope Cliff is right.
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Old 11-29-11, 06:20 PM   #2
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Old 11-29-11, 10:32 PM   #3
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I have always considered winter to run from 45 days before winter solstice until 46 days after winter solstice, which puts the solstice smack in the middle of winter. The leaves tend to fall around the start of my artificial season, I harvest the last of my garden goodies around the same time and I generally find myself hunting around for my cool/moist gear about then. On the back side, flower buds are starting to burst out in early February and I am often riding in wool knickers, wool T-shirt and one light long sleeve shirt by then.

Another advantage of this half-season shift is it puts midsummer on summer solstice, where the Bard meant it to be.
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Old 12-03-11, 05:43 PM   #4
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The two weeks or so that we're experiencing right now is about as good as winter gets for me. I love clear cold winter weather. And it's not even that cold now.
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Old 12-04-11, 05:34 AM   #5
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I don't know if the worst weather is behind us but it certainly has been great riding weather in Western Washington with a promising forecast for the next week or so.
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Old 12-07-11, 11:00 AM   #6
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Let's hope Cliff is right.
When you have that deep a voice, pretty much everything you say is right...
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Old 12-08-11, 05:44 PM   #7
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I agree that this weather has been great. I just bundle up in my wool and am cozy for the ride home. I like it as much as I like the warm summer weather. There's just less traffic/tourists/peds to deal with this time a year which makes it even better!
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Old 12-08-11, 06:56 PM   #8
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I'm enjoying the DRY, but don't bet on the worst weather being behind us.
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Old 12-10-11, 10:27 PM   #9
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Last two years at this time, i was peeling off wet layers when I got to work seems like every day.
I'm getting spoiled by cold and dry.
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Old 12-15-11, 05:07 PM   #10
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This has been a pretty good season to be a cyclist. Cold and dry is a million times better than still pretty cold, and wet. And Cliff Mass seems to be right, at least so far.
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Old 12-15-11, 05:16 PM   #11
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It is all relative...

Left YEG on Tuesday morning and it was clear and -14F and am now enjoying the fact I can stroll down to the market wearing wool knickers and a sweater while some of the locals are bundled up in Parkas.

Currently 40F and overcast and the forecast for the rest of the week is promising warmer temperatures... the higher humidity does bring a little added chill factor but we are all about warm woolens and do not keep the house that warm.

Just cooking dinner brings the interior temps up a fair bit here so he kitchen is a nice place to gather.
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Old 12-15-11, 05:20 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
This has been a pretty good season to be a cyclist. Cold and dry is a million times better than still pretty cold, and wet. And Cliff Mass seems to be right, at least so far.
Always say I will take our extremely cold and dry over the cold and wet of the PNW... that and clear skies and sunshine.

Don't really care how crappy the weather here might get as even more than nice weather, being able to be with my wife trumps whatever mother nature might toss at us.
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Old 12-15-11, 08:05 PM   #13
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Bleh, I want the rain back. Down here in Eugene, the barbarians burn unseasoned wood and don't give it enough oxygen to burn properly. The result is horrific particulates. It feels like what I imagine late nineteenth century London was like. The only reason we don't violate the federal particulate standards every non-rainy day is because the local air pollution board has cleverly hidden the detector a great distance from the houses of the burners.
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Old 12-16-11, 11:02 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by B. Carfree View Post
Bleh, I want the rain back. Down here in Eugene, the barbarians burn unseasoned wood and don't give it enough oxygen to burn properly. The result is horrific particulates. It feels like what I imagine late nineteenth century London was like. The only reason we don't violate the federal particulate standards every non-rainy day is because the local air pollution board has cleverly hidden the detector a great distance from the houses of the burners.
Have you spent time in Oakridge during the winter? It will give a whole new perspective on our air quality. If you go don't forget your respirator.
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Old 12-16-11, 02:33 PM   #15
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Have you spent time in Oakridge during the winter? It will give a whole new perspective on our air quality. If you go don't forget your respirator.


Yes, Oakridge has worse air than we do, but that doesn't change the fact that ours is bad. The reasons for the foul air are the same in both cities: people who burn don't know how to do it without making copious amounts of soot. Sadly, many dirty burners take great pride in their fires, so there doesn't seem to be any way to approach them about improving their technique.
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Old 12-18-11, 08:11 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
The last few years, the worst winter storms came around Thanksgiving. December and January were cold, but not brutally so. This year we have some help from La Niņa. Let's hope Cliff is right.
I've been in Seattle since October of '93. It seems to me that in January and/or February we have several weeks of cold clear weather. Now at first you'd think that that would be a good thing, but it always seems to be accompanied by high winds much of the time and the sun is blindingly bright. I don't look forward to it. I'd rather have my usual steady light drizzle and dark low clouds than have a blinding winter-time sun and high winds.
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Old 12-26-11, 05:48 PM   #17
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I have lived in Plain Washington for 63 years. Here, winter starts around Thanksgiving time. Most years we will have snow on the ground by then, and it will stay until the first to the middle of April. This year, I have been going down valley to the Dryden area and riding up until last week. If it clears off a little I will be back on the roads. With the snow and slick roads, it is a little hard to comute by bike from here to Dryden.

Most years, by the middle of February, winter will be on the way out, although we can get some nasty snow storms up here in the mountains.

The days are getting longer, summer is on the way!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 12-26-11, 07:28 PM   #18
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I wish the last two weeks had been clear and cold here - been mostly FOG, FOG, FOG and cold. But, still rideable.

Really dreaded winter after I bought my bike in April. Really didn't want to see summer end - and I am a winter kind of guy. But I have found that I can have FUN riding in awful weather. FUN wins!
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Old 12-28-11, 09:53 AM   #19
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wtf, so warm today... im over dressed with just a rain shell and a long sleeve shirt (i got some pants on too )
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Old 01-03-12, 10:32 AM   #20
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Yesterday, I hiked up to Talapus Lake from exit 47, the Pratt Lake Trailhead. There was no snow on the trail for about a mile, and very little up at the lakes. I've seen more snow there in June.

At best, winter is going to come two or three days at a time and mostly pass us by this year, like summer did last year.
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Old 01-15-12, 12:29 PM   #21
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:-\
Here's me whining: how come Ballard has no snow yet Shoreline is covered? This info via the DOT traffic cameras. Ya, I am addicted to my bike. One day without riding and now must wait for the ice under the fluffy stuff to melt. I learned the black & blue way the importance of avoiding ice on the roads.

Waiting...waiting...waiting...
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Old 01-15-12, 07:02 PM   #22
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We have about 5" here. I don't have to go to work until Tuesday so if this keeps up I'll put the knobbies back on my old Rocky Mountain tomorrow. It's bound to be safer than riding my motorcycle. :-)
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Old 01-15-12, 07:22 PM   #23
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Winter here just started today... temperature took a nosedive and what was brown is now covered in white.
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Old 01-15-12, 07:25 PM   #24
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Funny... came from the PNW where it was just hovering around freezing and got back here where it was about the same temperature and whereas I was comfortable in Portland was cooking here due to the drier climate.

Testing things by riding in the same clothes I was riding with in Portland when it was much colder here and was way too warm and had to strip off a layer.

Humidity plays a huge role in things.
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Old 01-16-12, 02:14 AM   #25
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Seems like most of Seattle to the north and south of me has snow, but Greenwood is clear. Icy on my walk to the grocery store a block away around 10PM. Off from both school and work tomorrow so I guess I won't have to brave the icy commute at 0630 until Tuesday.
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