"I dream of a hard and brutal mysticism in which the naked self merges with the nonhuman world and somehow survives...Paradox and bedrock."-Edward Abbey

27 January 2015


Some shots of the river. The blue ice is always captivating...

Although there have been some cold days and some snowy days, by and large, the month has been rather warm. A meteorological prophet whose gospels I read has dubbed it June-Uary. As the direct sunlight has returned, chasing away the long dark, the temperature has warmed. The last two days have had highs in the very early sixties. Last evening, as I arrived home from obligations, I caught the scent of mud. Of thawing.

It's not unheard of to have a January thaw. Although, I cannot recall smelling mud so early. Catching that scent in early February is shocking. I have been recording the weather-highs, lows, and conditions-for about four years now. Yesterday, I noted my first smelling of mud this year. The reason being, people's memories, even and especially when it comes to weather, is short. I want to be able to document when the first omens of thaw appear. Geekery aside, it is part of the human affliction-both as a merit and a flaw-to seek out patterns.

With the day's high being sixty-two at ninety-one sixty, I did not bother with a jacket of fleece vest whilst on walkabout. All those layers were in my pack. The trail I wandered featured mud and mushy snow. Like my layers, I carried microspikes and snowshoes, but neither were needed. The sun was hot upon my face. Part of me rather enjoyed it.

Mount Pendleton as seen from across the valley. From behind my house, of course, it is far bigger...

Some rock I may find myself scrabbling once the snow melts...

There is a rumor of snow, scant, though it may be, in the next day or so. Nothing major. None of my meteorological oracles speak to a big change in the pattern in the next ten days. Of course, foretelling the weather involves aspect of chaos mathematics, which makes predictions dubious beyond just a few days. Still, as I breathe in the scent of mud, I catch myself wondering if the prophets with be calling the next month July-Ruary.   


  1. I am not a fan of warm winter days. Just doesn't feel right! I like the cold and snow :-)

  2. I can tell you, though, when you live somewhere that winters are long, dark, and can be rather cold, odd as they may be, the warm days can be a pleasant respite.

  3. Still too warm in my part of the planet. In the 70s over the weekend--Saturday got to an astoundingly horrible 78*. It's January, in the mountains. The issue here is drought. No rain is a very bad thing when one is surrounded by tinder dry wilderness...

    Love that first photo...and the glacier-blue ice. Very cool... ;D

    1. Thank you.

      Luckily, the snowpack for the state is still around ninety percent. Of course, that could change easily. I don't mind the warmer days, as long as we have the moisture too. If it means keeping my mountains from catching fire, I'd endure six straight months of blizzards.

  4. Having been gone from my little town for two months, I don't feel qualified to answer, but I'll attempt....
    I confess to like these warmer winters, right up until the time they become the norm. Then it's a big confusion, what will happen what will not.
    Hope you all kids do better than we did, and with more foresight.

    1. The winter of 2012 was so warm it was pretty well autumn turning into spring. I didn't mind it, but the wildfires that spring and early summer were grotesque. As I mentioned to Terlee, I'd deal with blizzards and cold as long as it ensures we don't have the wildfires, or, at least not on such a catastrophic scale.