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March 12, 2006

Carmel Valley Snow

Remember last month when my family had to cancel a ski trip because there was no snow in the mountains, and we were all getting over illnesses? We were all bummed out that we wouldn’t be going to the mountain this winter.

Then this weekend, the mountain came to us.

For more than a week, California has been in the grip of this arctic storm system that is straying far beyond its normal range, like an attack dog whose chain has broken from its post. The weather it brings has been just about as welcome. (Let’s just say there’s a reason that millions of us moved away from cold-weather climates to live in this state, and it wasn’t to be governed by the Terminator.)

So for the past three nights and early mornings, we’ve had heavy rainstorms and temperatures in the low 30s – which makes for truly miserable running conditions in my book.

I’m normally pretty resilient when it comes to running in our local climate. Cold weather by itself – fine. Typical rainy mornings in March – no problem. But for some reason the combination of the two has been too formidable an opponent for me to get out of bed and run in the morning. Or maybe I’m still shell-shocked from last week’s Napa Marathon.

The one upside of the storm system is that the precipitation falling at our house as freezing rain changes its complexion at slightly higher elevations. Each morning, we’ve awoken to the sight of snow covering the ridgelines on both sides of Carmel Valley.

While it’s not a complete aberration, it is pretty rare to see snow from our house. The last time it we had a measurable snowfall was three winters ago. Which, like I said, normally suits us just fine, thank you very much.

But this morning, we decided to make up for last month’s missed opportunity. We blew off church, loaded up the van and drove into the hills to play in the snow.

The snowfall wasn’t what you would call deep – in fact, it was probably laughable by any serious measure – but it was enough for us to have snowball fights, build small castles, and finally break in the winter clothes we bought this season. The kids came home and drank hot chocolate when it was all over, and it was a happy winter day.

But really…can we be done now? Can someone turn the weather machine off? I honestly can’t take many more of these cold, wet, dreary mornings. Give them back to Canada or Alaska or some other place where the people are more hardy and better equipped to deal with them. I don’t ask for much. Just give California back our usual early springtime and I’ll stop complaining, I promise.

Thankfully, I still managed to get a couple of mid-day runs in this weekend – one of which I’ll describe in more detail next time.


olga 3/13/06, 4:59 AM  

Yay for snowball fights!! Fun!
Spoiled CAians:) I want some sun too!

backofpack 3/13/06, 8:10 AM  

Though we don't get snow much, we get the cold and rain all the time! Right now, I'm waiting for early morning daylight and warmer temps during the rain. I'd be happy with about 50 degrees....

stronger 3/13/06, 8:14 AM  

A couple of weeks ago when it hit 65 degrees I was dancing- until someone told me the spring snow hasn't even arrived. At least I got sick on a cold snowy weekend as opposed to the 65 degree kind.

Kim 3/13/06, 8:51 AM  

I'm with you on being over it. So totally over it. And another front is moving in on us...
Enjoy the sun we're getting this am...at least we're sunny up here...but we're a little north of you.
Looks like you guys had a blast!
My sis was going snow-boarding on Mt Toro (on friend's private property) on Saturday...not sure how that went...if there was actually enough snow to not thrash her board...but she was gonna try.
I'm ready for some sunny days. That's typically the beauty of living here...we have foggy summers but beautiful sunny winters....
Hope all is well!

jeff 3/13/06, 4:37 PM  

haha...your tiniest one looks sooo cute in that outfit! very, very groovy, d.

angie's pink fuzzy 3/13/06, 5:15 PM  

ooo ahhh

the county closed the road up mt. lemmon, so we couldn't enjoy the few inches that fell on our mtns :(

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