Friday, April 07, 2017

Warmer Weather and Lots of Snow Brings Breakup to Anchorage

Breakup in Anchorage is when the temperatures start getting into the 40s or more and the snow and ice that are left thaw into puddles and small lakes.  Breakups in recent years have tended to mild and quick, unlike 20 years ago and more when there were deep puddles everywhere.

This year we had a cold, sunny March with lots of snow sublimating.  Then a foot of snow at the end of March.  Now it's hitting high 40˚s F during the day and all that snow means lots of homeless water.

This isn't too big a puddle, but the picture shows the snow that's left still.

Here's the driveway of a church parking lot.  We had to walk in the street to get around this puddle.  We used to wear 'breakup boots' this time of year, but we've had such mild breakups that I didn't even think about it when we went for this walk a couple evenings ago.

Here's a driveway that hasn't completely thawed yet.

 And here's a stretch of sidewalk/biketrail that's on the south side of the street, so it doesn't get much sun and it's still partly frozen.

I finally decided I could wait to get my bike out no longer, even if I did get wet.

Here's a parking lot lake.  (The car was out of the deepest part by the time I got the camera out.)

I went through the Helen Louise McDowell Sanctuary where breakup is still in the future, though the snow was soft and deep.  If you got off the narrow padded down snow in the middle of the path, your foot would sink a foot.  I walked the bike.

Here's the hidden sanctuary still looking very winter.

As I look at this picture I'm realizing that this is the part that has a boardwalk.  There was no sign of boardwalk.

Here's a bit of bike trail that was deep enough to make us detour the other evening.  But on bike it was fine, I have a back fender, but I still went through it slowly.  I also pulled out  The Cloudspotter's Guide to check on those cloud above the trees.
"Of all the common clouds, Cirrus must be the most beautiful.  Their name comes from the Latin for a lock of hair, for they are the delicate white wisps of ice that appear high in the heavens. . .
Cirrus are the highest of the common clouds and are composed entirely of ice crystals, typically forming above 24,000ft in temperate regions of the world."
Since Anchorage is not in a temperate region [yet], I don't know how high these might be.


  1. Stress Management and Other Things...Saturday, April 8, 2017 at 1:45:00 AM AKDT

    Steve-- I do not know if you want to publish this, you may remember me from years back, but I want to share something funny-- maybe just amusing about that snow. On the day of the foot of snow at the end of March I had to drive into Anchorage to see a surgeon about a lump in my breast. The conditions for driving were some of the worst I have seen. There were vehicles bigger than mine in the ditch. There were many. Some were fresh, the drivers still in their vehicles waiting for help. I was white-knuckled, realizing that cancer could eventually take my life, but on that road between Mat-Su and Anchorage, a safe arrival was a matter of skill and luck. The road could take a life or at least a means of family transportation in an instant.

    I saw a family in the U-Med district pushing a stroller. They had children and shopping bags and we're walking in the street as they could not walk on top of the berm. I was scared for them.

    I had the operation to remove the lump a day and a half ago and I am awaiting a pathologist's report late next week to find out if I have cancer. I am not scared-- I think that drive into town imprinted on me that cancer was not the greatest of my worries.

    1. Stress, Blogger put this into the spam file and I had to go switch it to here. I'm distressed to hear of your situation, but comforted by knowing what a good attitude you have toward it. My mom had breast cancer in her 50s and died at 93. My wife's also had breast cancer and there's been no problem for over 25 years.
      And let me also say that recently I was thinking about the early days of blogging when I didn't have many visitors each day, but there was a community of other bloggers who regularly commented on each others' blogs. It's good to hear from you again now. Let me know what happens. Sending healing vibes your way.


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