Saturday, April 29, 2017

Winter rains are over!


March and April have been interesting months, storms have been getting progressively weaker, moving thru faster, and now it is over. The Sierra snowpack is awesome, reservoirs are even letting some water go for fear there won't be enough space to take in the melting snow. I read something about how some Tahoe ski resorts are thinking they can stay open all summer. I've taken almost 300 shots of the aerial festivities I've been treated to, edited them down to 15 - which is enough for two posts.

So in no particular order, here's the take:













 What are these odd horizontal strips about? I have no idea except to wonder.







Title for the above? "Orphan cloud"



Judy Garland would like this one.
I think Jeff Beck has done a marvelous rendition,
I'm sure you can find it on youtube.

Stop in again in a couple of weeks for part two of March/April images.




Sunday, March 5, 2017

To write 'It's been a wild month!' would be an understatement!



The shot above reminds me of fireflies i enjoyed back east:








There were many interesting skies to behold! Pictures are worth many, many words, especially mine, so let's get right to it.















I love to see the sky kissing the earth, gently.
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3/4 Sat
A quiet and rather sunny week, but forecast calls for 'scattered showers' over the weekend.

The daylight hours were what i have dubbed 'rainbow skies' - that is to say broken cloud cover, some sunlight, some rain, producing numerous partial and fast moving rainbows. I am happy to note that i will last longer than these, and am around and sentient enough to appreciate them.

I guess i must be constantly under 'scattered', because at 9 PM it's raining sideways - lightly so, but still 'sideways'.

The next AM there are signs it ain't over yet. I'll call this a mini-mammatus:


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mammatus_cloud
(lots of great images here!)

"Mammatus are most often associated with the anvil cloud and also severe thunderstorms. They often extend from the base of a cumulonimbus, but may also be found under altocumulus, altostratus, stratocumulus, and cirrus clouds, as well as volcanic ash clouds.  In the United States, sky gazers may be most familiar with the very distinct and more common cumulonimbus mammatus. When occurring in cumulonimbus, mammatus are often indicative of a particularly strong storm or maybe even a tornadic storm".

The shot above was taken around 9AM.
By 10:30, there was hail!

I hope the rest of March is just as interesting as February was!
My Canon Powershot camera is always within quick reach!


Sunday, January 29, 2017

A really wild week!


1/23

Unless you've been hiding in a cave, you've how wild and wacky California's weather has been recently. Not just rain but record breaking waves and surf. As usual, the most interesting skies come after the front has moved thru and there are still many isolated cells that come ashore and turn blue skies to dark grey, it rains for 10 minutes or so, and then the sun comes out. Monday the 23rd was just such a day, the rest of the week was similar.








Here's a very curious rainbow-like event, it lasted but a minute or two.



I have no idea what it is called, but it is something 'rainbow-like', since water droplets
are obviously splitting sunlight into a spectrum of color.

1/29
The last few days, very peaceful, a lull in mother nature's assault. But don't put that rain gear away! Mid-week it starts all over again.




Saturday, January 14, 2017

Be careful what you wish for -

It just might come true. We've been hoping for rain, and my, my, my, did we ever get it!


A few storms rolled thru in December, they started to put a big  dent in the drought.
There were several nice sunsets:
12/12



12/25





A nice detail, just to right of center.


1/7
All week we've been listening to predictions of a whopper storm hitting us over the weekend, 1/7-1/9. It's 'sposed to be a once-every-25-years' event. Here's three images that show what's coming:






Always check this one out:

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We are lucky to live in times with the technology we have - here are the the different types of sat imagery:


Needless to say there is incredible software that can crunch information and generate computerized predictions. It wasn't so long ago that all we had were rudimentary prediction tools and communications media, so people had pretty simple warnings, and disaster striking caught most flat-footed:

Galveston hurricane

Radio was a recent invention, only decades old.

"Starting in late 1894, Guglielmo Marconi began pursuing the idea of building a wireless telegraphy system based on Hertzian waves (radio). Marconi gained a patent on the system in 1896 and developed it into a commercial communication system over the next few years."

And 60 years before that:

California Megaflood: Lessons from a Forgotten Catastrophe
A 43-day storm that began in December 1861 put central and southern California underwater for up to six months, and it could happen again.

Saturday 1/7 started calmly enough... then about 10:30, a ferocious wind kicked in, the huge tree out my window 1/2 block away is writhing in the gusts. The rest of the weekend was constant rain.
It abated by nonday AM, but returned again on Mon. PM.
This rain has certainly soothed the drought in Nor. Cal., the drought has been declared officially over in the northern 40% of the state. but So. Cal hasn't been so lucky.
There were some excellent rainbows to be seen, but not in my neck of the woods - photographically, this storm was uninteresting for me.

So what havoc has this winter dealt our beaches and shoreline?
Here's an example:


If you look at a longer history in a geologic time frame, the Ca. coast has always been under attack, since the last ice age, when ocean waters receded. The ice age ended, oceans rose, waves carved the coastline we know now and love.


But it ain't over yet. I've walked many a mile along the beaches from SF to Half Moon Bay, i know well how soft and malleable this land is - VERY!
Once i was walking Drakes Beach at Pt Reyes w/ a friend who dared to walk right along the cliff wall, taking pictures. I joked that this might make a good TV ad for Leica cameras (which have a soundless shutter) - the beachcomber walks, trips the shutter a few times with some other kind of camera here and there, which makes that 'ca-chunka' sound. Then suddenly, the cliff gives way, buries him. A voice says  "if only he'd been using a Leica..." (no sound vibration to disturb the cliff walls, shake anything loose.)


To wrap things up, here's an interesting story: