Snowmageddon in the PNW

Olychick

I know our snow and cold is probably laughable compared to the winters many of you have but it’s pretty unusual for us to have this much with the frigid temps. There are still widespread power outages, including my house. I have a woodstove and lots of dry wood but no water. There are so many hills in this area (including Seattle) and snow removal equipment is limited. It happens here infrequently (this much snow) but I’ve lived through some long power outages so am always prepared. I made coffee on my one burner propane camp stove and hummingbird food on the woodstove. Now to melt some snow to flush :-).

I feel really sorry for so many who aren’t well stocked, as well as the legions of homeless who have streamed here because of our usually temperate climate. I can imagine trying to survive in a tent right now.

Any others here in the NW?

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DawnInCal

Not the NW, but N. Cal is going to get hammered over the next 10 days if the forecasters have it right. It started snowing yesterday but it didnt start sticking until last night. As of now, there is an accumulation of two inches. By the end of the week we're looking at totals of 10 - 20 inches and up to several feet in the higher elevations.

We're stocked with food and have a generator to rely on if the power goes out. I'm fully expecting that to happen, as it seems every time there is a big storm like this, a tree falls on the power lines and takes out the electricity.

Planning to bundle up and go for a walk in the falling snow later. It'll be invigorating!

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Elmer J Fudd

For clarity, the more populated parts of California, the coastal regions and near inland areas, don't have snow now or ever. The hills around the SF Bay area recently got a picturesque dusting and this can happen at elevations above 2500 feet or so. Also, higher mountains throughout California, including in SoCal, have regular snow and there are many ski resorts. Some areas, like through the Donner Pass and peaks near Lake Tahoe and also Mammoth Mountain, regularly get snowfall amounts measured in the tens of feet annually. This runoff produces water for agriculture and a large population in an otherwise pretty arid area.

Dawn must live in mountain foothills or in the inland area up near Oregon. Down here in the flatlands, we get rain this time of year but not anything more dramatic.

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greenshoekitty

This is the first time in my 76 years that I have seen people heed the warnings , to stay home and the stores were full on Thursday. People buying food and stuff. Thought I was seeing the news reports from huracaine areas. Olychick I am over in Port Townsend, I have 6 ins. and as cold as yesterday was it was hard to get the temp in my house to 70. glad we are a bit warmer today. Only lost power Monday for a few hours. Stay safe all you out there.

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Bluebell66

I feel for you and others who are dealing with this right now, especially when it's so unusual. Fortunately, we have power, but many others in our state do not and have not had it for days due to ice. Our temps are in the 20's today and have been that and lower for many days before that. We are expected to have ice again this week. The hotels are full of people who lost power, so many have been in emergency centers set up in schools and churches.

We knew the ice was coming last week so I stocked up on food and water, just in case, so we are good for this week, too. Thankfully our power lines are buried so we are a little less likely to lose power.

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gardengal48 (PNW Z8/9)

I'm up on the Sound (Bainbridge Island) and as usual, the forecasters and media have made this storm out to be a much bigger deal than it really is. Because of topography, it depends on where one is located as to how much snow they actually received....the worst seems to be what is normally considered the "banana belt" here - the Sequim/Port Angeles area. As much as 15-24" but that's due to the northeastern outflow from the Fraser River Valley in BC as that is what brings high winds and Arctic cold air that can and often does turn to snow once it hits the marine moisture.

I only received about 4"......barely enough to be a bother. But it was wet and heavy and can easily break branches or bring down trees in areas that received more snow totals. And it's not like this was any sort of record snowfall!! We do get snow here frequently in winter, although usually not much and what we do get typically disappears quickly. I have lived here all my life and do remember some significant snow storms......December 1990: almost 24" in downtown Seatte in just over 8 hours. And because of very cold temperatures, that hung around for several weeks. Again in December 1996 - more than a foot. November 2010 - 18". And the one they are comparing this to.....February 2017 - ~8".

But PNW'ers are not well accustomed to snow. And we tend to panic as soon as the first snowflake becomes visible :-) Schools, businesses and public places close, events are cancelled and everyone forgets how to drive. I just stay home where it is warm and safe and wait until it's gone!!

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sephia_wa

I'm here in Kent. I live about 2.5 miles from SeaTac airport. We got 8.5". Flights were cancelled yesterday. The problem with snow in this area is that it happens so infrequently that the city isn't prepared for it. We don't have lots of snow plows or truck sanders. My city alone only has one. And we also develop ice - black ice. The street can appear clear but there will be a layer of ice. It got down to 15 degrees at my house overnight. Other parts of the country get way more snow than we do but are more prepared for it. Another storm is moving in today supposedly around 3pm, and then again Mon and Tue. I'm fortunate in that I can work from home. And shelters for the homeless are opening up - lots of churches are opening their doors. This area just isn't prepared to handle snow. This amount of snowfall doesn't happen often.

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Olychick

I know some areas in the mountains of California have had extreme amounts of snow. I heard one story of a resort where they were trapped for many days while crews cleared 8 miles of road so people could get out. And another area in Yosemite I think where employee housing was destroyed by falling trees. My friends live in Mammoth Lakes and they had something like 10 feet of snow fall in just a day or two. I guess well get more snow today and Tuesday, so more power outages I suppose. I’m so greatful to the power crews for working so hard to restore our power asap.

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greenshoekitty

gardengal, The one at thanksgiving (2010) was the one I lost 4 rose bushs. our ground does not stay frozen that long very often. I won't be surprised if we were to lose power as the wind is really getting strong now.

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Lindsey_CA

The man who thinks he knows everything piped in with, "For clarity, the more populated parts of California, the coastal regions and near inland areas, don't have snow now or ever." as well as "Down here in the flatlands, we get rain this time of year but not anything more dramatic."

Elmer, I'm guessing you live at sea level, because when I was working in downtown Sacramento (elevation 30'), we got snow. And where I live in unincorporated Sacramento County (elevation 120'), we've gotten snow. No, it doesn't last for more than a couple of hours, but it HAS happened. So don't be telling people that we "don't have snow now or ever" because that's not true.

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maddie260

I live in Marin county. I've seen snow here! It hasn't been often, but it's been wonderful!

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Elmer J Fudd

I don't consider Sacramento to be coastal nor "near inland" to coastal regions nor proximate to "the more populated parts of California". Do you?

Sacramento, at a distance from the moderating effect of the ocean, has much more extreme weather than here, especially in the summer. And regular stretches of day after cold day of tule fog in winter.

Did I leave out anything important?

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mayflowers

Portland and east of the city got a few inches of snow but we only got flurries west of Portland. Grocery store shelves were picked clean. I went to the store this morning and the checker told me the check-out lines on Friday went all the way to the back of the store.

We're supposed to get some snow tonight and tomorrow. I'm ready for spring. Our crocus are already blooming.

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patriciae_gw

We live out in Skagit County and the big concern for us is always the power. We don't normally get the cold blasts from the Canadian Frazier valley, for us wind storms are typically warm. How do you keep your pump house warm when it is 15 degrees? We use light bulbs so if the power goes out we would be in trouble. So far so good as we haven't gotten the wind. Keeping my fingers crossed. We have a generator but don't run it at night. This is supposed to go on for at least the next week.

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gardengal48 (PNW Z8/9)

We get snow almost every year - not always very much but it does come down here pretty consistently. So "infrequently" and "not prepared" are not very valid assessments :-) WSDOT was aware of the pending storm over a week ago and has been in intense preparation ever since. There are over 150 snow plows and sanding/deicing trucks in the Puget Sound area so they do their best but freeways and major roads are first on the list followed by major congestion areas - bridges and overpasses, around hospitals, airports, ferry terminals. Secondary or side roads don't rank very high so they may never get around to your neighborhood :-)

It is the population that is not well prepared, not the services!! Although we knew well in advance this snowstorm was coming, those last minute dashes to stock up on groceries and the traffic jams arising from commuters who beat feet to get home before the worst hits are pretty indicative of those who choose to ignore any advance warnings.

greenshoe, 2010 was kind of a fluke :-) It was not predicted to take that sharp a turn that fast. We went from record high temperatures (74F) to record lows (19F) in just over 24 hours!! I remember that I had to run an errand in Bremerton that day and when I left home in the morning for a max 30-40 minute drive, there was not a trace of snow!! A couple of hours later, it dropped something like 30 degrees and snow was coming down in buckets......took me 3 and half hours to get back home and I was lucky as I had 4 wheel drive. The road was littered with those who didn't :-) Was without power for 4 days and power crews couldn't get to problem areas to fix.

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blfenton

I'm in Vancouver and we dodged a bullet with that snowfall. We're supposed to get a little bit of snow this afternoon. The big weather story was the outflow winds and although yes. the rest of the country laughs at us, it is about 10C cooler than normal. We should be about 8-9C and we've warmed up to about -4C right now but forecast is for colder tomorrow

Th outflow winds have caused a lot of power outages and some marina/boat damages.

I was just listening to our noon news and tongue-in-cheek, Seattle is asking BC for some snow shovels. :)

Stay safe you guys.

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Olychick

It really can become a mess quickly! We have so many reports of potential weather that is continually catastrophized, that lots of people either panic or have become complacent at the next big disaster (like a 2” snow fall, or 25 mph winds, or freezing temps announced like we’re all going to die).

Not everyone can afford to leave their jobs early or take time off, or many have jobs where that’s not practical. Esp if it’s another false alarm.

As to being prepared, not everyone has the means for a generator, or the ability to operate one. Same with AWD, or a woodstove. That means you can be prepared for lots of things, but so much of the population isn’t able to prepare in that way. So a 3 or 4 day spell with no electricity or no ability to get to work, is a real disaster for folks.

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blfenton

Some metro areas are dealing with windchill temperatures of -20C (-10F) or lower and when you've lost your power because of the winds that's dangerous.

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sephia_wa

Gardengal, please cite the source of your information. You stated that there are over 150 snow plows and sanding/deicing trucks in the Puget Sound area. Or define the parameters of the Puget Sound area. My information came from law enforcement connections in several cities. Of course the major roads and around hospitals are dealt with but surrounding neighborhoods aren't. That's what I'm talking about. Those areas don't get sanded/deiced until the major areas are cleared. I'm at the bottom of a really steep hill and unless you have chains, you can't get up it. I have 8.5" inches. What about SeaTac airport? 200+ flights were cancelled Saturday. For being so prepared it's interesting that the airport was so impacted.

I'm a native Seattleite, and no, it doesn't snow every year. It does snow in Seattle infrequently and when it does, people aren't prepared.

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lukkiirish

Our forecasters tend to make every storm seem like it’s going to be much worse than it ends up being. The only exception this year was the Vortex, they were spot on with that. A lot of people took that prediction with a grain of salt and were not prepared when it hit. Here, it’s not at all uncommon for the schools as well as a large majority of offices to close during extreme weather.

If you can’t afford a generator but live in an area that may be prone to power losses, if used properly, a Keroscene heater can be a good affordable alternative. We got ours from Home Depot after we first moved here. We had to use it several times before investing in a generator. We just left a window open to ensure any of the pollutants from the keroscene were aired out. They can produce a lot of heat, our whole main floor was nice and toasty even with a window open in sub zero conditions. Just a thought.

Also, for those who are not used to a lot of snow, be aware that if your temps flexuate between above and below freezing, black ice can form on the roads, driveways and sidewalks. If you do have to drive, be careful, just because you don’t see the ice, doesn’t mean it isn’t there. Be safe everyone!


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murraysmom Zone 6a OH

I was living in San Francisco in February, 1976. I came out to my car covered in snow and had to scrape the windows. Being from Ohio, the 1" didn't bother me, but it was the talk of the town. :)

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watchmelol

It snowed across the Bay Area in 1976. San Francisco, San Jose and Fremont (all at sea level) were dusted with snow. Sometime in 90's DS got stranded for several hours late one night on his motorcycle at the summit in the Santa Cruz Mts. Elevation is on 1800 feet at the summit and pretty darn close to the ocean.

So no there is no don't have snow now or ever nor some moderating effect of the ocean.

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Elmer J Fudd

Yes I remember that event in 1976. about 43 years ago. You can consider that as a regular occurrence if you want, a few inches every 40 or 50 years is "never" to me. It has also snowed in Los Angeles, I remember that when a kid. Also "never".

Snow on the Hwy 17 Summit? Yes, there was even a dusting this past Tuesday about 2000 feet and I saw it as I was driving over in the morning. As I said, a dusting of the surrounding high elevations.

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Lars

I was living in San Francisco in 1976, but I never stayed there for the winter. I generally spent January and February in Mexico, and so I missed any snow that happened there.

I can sometimes see snow on the San Gabriel Mountains from my front porch:

It was still warm enough at my house to go to the beach, however. I'm very close to the ocean, and so it never gets below about 42° here; average low for January is 50°. I don't have to go far to see snow, but I do have to go up in elevation. There are several peaks over 9,000 feet in the San Gabriel Mountains.

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DawnInCal

Well, the sun came out and melted the two inches of snow, the walk was indeed invigorating due a brisk wind, threatening looking clouds have rolled back in and I am about to resume my indoor painting project as it is no longer fit for man nor beast outside. I also picked up the ingredients necessary for making a cheesecake. Baking is a great indoor activity when the weather is being less than pleasant.

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Olychick

It started dumping new snowing and got breezy a little while ago; ugh, I'll never get my power back on soon, I'm sure. I was hoping to be snowed in and get caught up on my Christmas baking, lol. I sent i.o.u.s for future treats when I couldn't get my baking done and sent before Christmas. Thought I'd do it for Valentine's Day instead, but not without power. Boo!

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greenshoekitty

I know 150 plows in an area sounds like a lot, but it is a large area, and as having a late partner who was a county employee, I will tell you that is not enough to do the jobs that need doing.



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patriciae_gw

We prepared for as much as we could when we built. I don't have a lot of bells and whistles in the house but we have a small generator and a Generator transfer panel. We went small because it uses less fuel. Ours runs the lights and fridge, freezer, TV, that sort of thing. No electric heat or oven, dishwasher etc though if we wanted to buy a bigger generator we could run that through the system. Our community is at the very end of the electric feed. 89 customers. If I call and it is under 89 I know it is just us and we are always last. If it is over it is going to be the other side of the river and we will get our power sooner. Last time three days and the land line out for 17 days. You would think we were on the moon. It is the pump house that preys on my mind. Fine as long as we run the generator and the lights work. Sigh. I am getting old. This year we rewrapped all the pipes and connections. I hate this sort of thing.

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Anglophilia

Best thing I ever did for myself was to install a whole house generator that runs on natural gas. It runs EVERYTHING in my house except the lights in my grown daughter's old BR, and my electric clothes dryer (no problem - only do laundry once weekly and have lines in my basement if a power outage lasts that long). I will buy a gas dryer when this one dies. I wanted both my HVAC systems to be able to run, and both refrigerators and all the lights inside and outside. Our power outages can last 5-10 days and come often enough (though less often since I installed the generator!) that it's well worth having it all work.

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DawnInCal

I just came across this news report that the NorCal sea level coastal towns of Eureka, Arcata and McKinleyville received snow this weekend! These communities are located in Humboldt County in N. California about 100 miles south of the Oregon border. The last time Humboldt County beaches saw snow was in 2002-03.

For those who are interested, here is a link to a slide show and the news article.

https://www.sfgate.com/weather/article/snow-beach-California-sea-level-Eureka-Arcata-13605020.php#item-85307-tbla-10

Olychick, sorry the forces of nature are keeping you from getting your holiday baking done. Maybe you should wait until the 4th of July!

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DawnInCal

For anyone who lives in an area where the electricity goes out for long periods of time, a generator is one of the best investments one can make to make life bearable during a power outage. They range in size from being able to run a few lights and the fridge to big enough to run the entire house. I realize not everyone can afford a generator, but for anyone who is in a position to do this, I would make it a priority when planning/preparing for weather or natural disaster related events such as snow, hurricanes, tornadoes, wildfires or earthquakes.

And...right on schedule, the power has gone out at our house because of trees on the lines.

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nancy_in_venice_ca Sunset 24 z10

I sympathize with the PNW having to deal with the snow.

Los Angeles would be in complete shut down if we had an inch or so of snow. We don't drive well in the rain, and probably even worse in the snow.

I heard predictions (second hand) that a strong rainstorm is expected Wednesday in Los Angeles. More mud slides and debris flows will be coming.

Lars' photo of San Gabriel Mtns with snow is what I saw this week traveling east on Venice Bl in West LA.

Photographers are taking shots for this year's crop of postcards of LA.

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yeonassky

I live near Vancouver BC. Right now we are getting a nice dusting of snow. Perhaps three inches and still falling.

Of course it's Sunday so not much road traffic. Monday people will be driving in it or at least in melty snow and perhaps icy conditions. Quelle catastrophe.

We are already having more accidents than ever on our highways roads and freeways. Whenever there is even a hint of ice or snow things blow up.

I wish I could get a generator as we seem to be living in an area that loses its power fairly regularly. :-(

Yes I agree everybody stay warm and cozy and don't go out if you don't need to.

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Olychick

I bought a little generator quite a few years ago. I'm always nervous that it won't start because it sits for years and the gas gets old, etc. But it's a Honda and just like all my Honda equipment, it started up on the 2nd pull. I'll take it in for a tune up/oil change when this is over and replenish my 5 gal gas cans with fresh gas. I just have to remember to use it in a vehicle once a year and refill the cans to keep it fresher. I can't recall how many watts it is, but I just wanted to be able to run the refer and freezer. I don't know if I can run them at the same time, so I alternate. I also packed a bunch of tupperware containers with snow and filled the fridge with them, as well as lots of containers of water that I kept putting outside to chill/freeze then back into the fridge.

Oh, my power just came back on! As soon as the hot water gets hot, I'm in the shower, woo hoo! But we probably have a foot of snow now. More predicted.



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Elmer J Fudd

" Los Angeles would be in complete shut down if we had an inch or so of snow. "

I looked it up, it happened in the '62. I was there but a preteen at the time. If I recall correctly, there wasn't much but it was widespread. Maybe an inch or a bit more, it didn't last long.

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Elmer J Fudd

Eureka is pretty far north from a Bay Area perspective. It can be a 5 hour or more drive. Los Angeles is not much farther and I suspect LA is a shorter drive from the South Bay than Eureka. The ocean there has a moderating effect but it's often damp and foggy like the nearby Oregon coast.

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lukkiirish

Oly, I’m glad the power came back on, that’s a lot of snow!

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yeonassky

Snow is now up to my smaller dog's chest. We had to run warm water on her to get the multitude of snowballs out of her fur.

We were glad to see the snow plow coming down the street. Some people were trying to get ahead of the snow and were out snow shoveling. Our snow shovel broke. Hopefully we can buy one tomorrow.

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Olychick

Still snowing here. All the clearing I did of the porch steps and around the birdfeeders for the ground feeding birds is completely filled in again. Shoveled again this morning so I could spread some seed, but it's snowing hard enough that the cleared areas are covered again. Sigh...it's going to be a long day.

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maifleur01

Just a comment about showers. If you have a gas hot water tank unless it is connected to electricity you have hot water. Several were amazed when this area had a storm that knocked out power for many for over a week to find this out.

Friend in Port Angeles posted that the snow in their area now has a layer of brown on top. Source not know but volcanic dust, residue from wood smoke, or pollen have been suggested.

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patriciae_gw

Well you do if you have water....One of the miseries of living in the boonies is when the power is out so is the water.

Weird about PA.

I am watching Varied Thrushes coming to our suet feeder. They are ground feeders(problematic) and at first could not figure out how to get food out of the thing-the cake was almost gone but it is full now and they are standing on the top. Good to go in the short term since they all eat it from the top down. The other birds don't mind hanging. We have three kinds of woodpeckers at the moment.

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Olychick

Yes, if you have electric hot water or an electric pump on your well, you have no hot (or cold) water when the power is out. We have a community well and could easily put a generator on it to have at least cold running water for a few hours each day, but some people have special septic systems that require electricity to run them and apparently they will be ruined if anyone uses them when the electricity is off. So instead of just being vigilant about not running their own water, they refuse to agree to let the rest of us turn on the pump when the power is off....

My power was on for 24 hrs and is now off again. It snowed all day, so I probably have 20" of snow or more. It's up to my knees when I venture out to the bird feeders. But I'm cozy with the woodstove, all my devices are charged and I probably won't need to start the generator for the fridge/freezer until morning, if it's still off. I feel so, so sorry for the power company workers trying to stay ahead of all these outages. And very appreciative that they keep showing up for work.

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lukkiirish

Holy Moly, that’s a lot of snow! Do you have a garage? When our power went out one winter, we put all of our perishables in the garage and they did fine. Even when the power is on I leave our bottled water out there to keep it cold.

We have a new storm heading our way tonight. Lots of ice, sleet and snow. Oh Joy!

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blfenton

It's snowing here and has been for a couple of hours and it's supposed to snow all night and not stop until the afternoon. I really hope the forecast is wrong. Like Seattle, we really do not do snow well.

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Olychick

I do have a garage, but it's detached and downhill from my house. I can just put things in the cooler outside, but don't really need to with the generator unless I run out of gas. Now I'm worried about 2 ft of snow on the roof with rain on the way. That's going to be a lot of weight, but my house is 1980's vintage post and beam construction, so I'm just going to have to hope it can hold it all. No way for me to remove it. Think I'll sleep on the first floor tonight tho, lol.

What area do you live in Lukki? I don't mind the snow as much as ice when it clings to trees and they start coming down. So scary at night to hear them breaking. Even the little ones sound like giants falling

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joyfulguy

If three or four long-term residents go together, they can buy a portable generator between/among them for a small investment. Maybe one somewhat larger than if financing personally. One at least would need to have space to store it.

Less hair-pulling/standing on end than if one or more had a well-stocked freezer.

Sharing would allow almost 6 hours of power each, if among four. Usually at least a few wouldn't be going to work during an extended power outage so could haul the generator from house to house.

Let"s not fight over who pays how much for gas, O.K?

ole joyful

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lukkiirish


I’m in Michigan, about 20 miles north of Troy. At the moment we’re in the middle of an ice, sleet, frozen rain and snow storm. (Try saying that fast 10 times!) Which is the worst!

We had an ice storm last week as well and ended up with over 1/4 inch of ice on our long driveway. DH has broken his arm and is no longer in remission so to say I have no time to deal with a 150 ft driveway in bad weather is an understatement.

Last week however, a client told me about an app called LawnGuru which offers all kinds of “on call” or contract services for lawn care and snow removal. I gave it a try before the ice storm last week and had them salt the drive. They were out to do the job within a couple of hours which was great, but the next morning the drive was still covered in ice. I thought it was a bust until I started to work on cleaning it. I put the shovel under a piece to pull it up, and all the ice started breaking up and sliding down the hill. To my delight I had the ice off the drive in 20 minutes with a minimal amount of effort. I was tickled. While the neighbors were still chipping away at their ice we were driving to my DH’s doctors appt.. It was worth every penny and I’ll be using them moving forward.

My point is, is that they or a similar app may offer the snow removal from your roof. If you don’t see it in the services offered, reach out to their customer service. I was told they are super responsive.

I saw some pics of the aftermath of snow on tv. The weather is so unpredictable right now, that running out of fuel would be my biggest fear, you may want to stick stuff out side just to reserve it.

here is the drive while I was cleaning it, all of that is shattered ice.


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Olychick

Wow! That service sounds great. I don't think anyone could get to me, though because of the road I live on. I was awakened at 5 a.m. by the power coming back on. Such gratitude for workers out all night restoring it! It warmed just enough that the snow is off all the trees, the roof seems to be fine - it didn't rain hard that I know of, so the snow is slowing dripping away. No ice or sleet falling. Whew! Luckily, I am retired so have no place I need to be so am just going to sit tight until nature clears the driveway. Although I drive an AWD so could likely get out, but live at the bottom of a 2 mile long hill with hairpin turns, so until I hear it's been plowed (low priority for our county) I won't have to go anywhere. I guess it's snowing again north of here.


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nopartyghost

Could I have some cheese with my whine? Still snowing north of Seattle. I don't have to go anywhere so staying home & off the roads as residential streets are a mess. The snow now is the heavy wet stuff & trees and shrubs are suffering under the weight. We have about a foot of it & I am waiting impatiently for it to start raining, melting all of the snow. 36 days until spring.

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lukkiirish

Oh Geeze!!! 2 miles and hair pin curves!!! And I thought our driveway was a bear! (I bet it’s gorgeous though!). Sounds like the worst may be over, I’m glad you’re ok and in a good place with it. No place like home I always say!!!

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lukkiirish

You sure can Noparty, pull up a chair and join in!!! I love looking at it, but am happy to be home as well!

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greenshoekitty

Snow is now melting and the propane truck came and filled the tank , so I shall stay warm. The down side of this is I don't have the bill from last month yet.

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nopartyghost

Photo from yesterday of part of my back yard. We live on a ridge & it's 2 miles down a road the state patrol closes ,until it can be treated, when it snows.


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DawnInCal

Olychick your road sounds just like ours! Its dowjhill all the way so not too much of a problem getting out; its getting back in that can be challenging. Part of the road has a cliff with a drop thats quite a ways down. Wouldnt you know that if the vehicles are going to start sliding thats where it always happens. More than once, I've found myself starting to go into a slide while saying, "nooooooo, not the cliff!!!" Fortunately, that part of the road was angled towards the opposite bank when it was graded, so the cars eventually straighten themselves out, but it's a hairy ride while waiting for that to happen!

No snow yet, but it's supposed to start anytime now. Expecting 8 - 12 inches by morning.

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yeonassky

Lukki so sorry your DH is no longer in remission. So glad the salt made your job simple. Will keep that in mind for the next snow storm.

It is still snowing here. The news said we could get up to 25 centimeters around 9" in total. We're about a foot and a half beyond that. It's trying to bury my littlest dog on our walks as pictured app post. She loves it . She is now leaping around like a deer.

My dog walks for clients are canceled for some unknown reason ;). Woohoo snow day. Now all I need is Buffy the vampire slayer reruns. JK I'm doing paperwork... sigh.

Stay safe everyone the roads can be treacherous!

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Olychick

Lukki, I missed the "no longer in remission" part of your post. I, too, am sorry to hear that. Keep each other warm!

Glad you found someone to help you with the ice. Sometimes that's the best for us, finding the help we need.

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lukkiirish

Thanks, we found out two weeks ago. It’s scary but the doctors are very optimistic. Multple Myeloma is like a chronic disease in that it can be controlled but that doesn’t help so much when you see your loved one in so much pain. :c(

I’m still on cloud nine about finding that service. LOL

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DawnInCal

I'm sorry too, luckiirish, but glad to read of the doctors optimism and that the disease is manageable. Hope he feels better soon!

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morz8

Sephia, when we had our 2007 storm, we shared a generator with neighbors Just a little gas type, it wasn't a whole house like my sister has just a few minutes SE of Seattle. I would run my refrigerator, then freezer for a few minutes, and a few times a portable heater just to take some chill off the kitchen. Charge phones. Then DH would take next door and run the neighbors freezer so she didn't lose food she couldn't afford to replace. And so forth.

At the end of that storm, a friend told me he had stopped to think what he could have done to take better care of his family and that was BIG generator. He bought one. It's never been unpacked - now 12 years later. And during the days after storm, one could not be bought. There were none and any place that sold them had a waiting list.

We have very deep wet slush everyplace today, raining on top of snow. We left here Saturday and bravely drove 3 hours to Portland to move my 92 yr old mother to what I hope is better and nicer assisted living - in Vancouver, it's the facility I had wanted for her when she first sold her house 5 years ago...their own pool, several levels of care. Snowing hard around Battle Ground/Ridgefield Saturday. My sis and her adult son were stuck in Seattle with the snow and couldn't help as planned.

Sunday I packed Mom's apartment, movers went to Plan B with a smaller truck better on icy roads, and got her things across the river to Vancouver where I did my best to get the new apartment cozy, put together, pictures hung etc before she saw it. Came very close to making it but put a new definition on the word 'tired'.

I was fine tuning some things and trying to help her gain some confidence in a new place, planning to spend all day yesterday when DH started getting concerned about roads. He said, we either need to check back into hotel, or leave, it doesn't sound good our direction. We decided to leave and return next week, spent our last hour in 4 wheel drive coming home but got here before nightfall so not too hair raising of a trip ;0) I haven't left the house today, no urge to go out in this at all. My mailman got in my drive today, apologizing for skipping yesterday with deep snow. I live within city limits ;0)


Editing to add - when I heard from my sister this morning (who is feeling way too guilty about not being able to come help this weekend)

We expected loss of power, woke up to live wire down in our
woods, three foot flames in the brush. Too much excitement. Fire
truck turned back, road blocked and they can't do anything until PSE cuts lines off.

Maple Valley, almost to Seattle


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Olychick

Wow Morz8 that is quite an adventure, both to Portland and back at home (at your sister's I guess). Glad you made it safely and hope your mama likes her new digs. My little inconvenience at having to keep a fire stoked, a generator running, the birds fed and live without a shower seems like just a blip in my life - which it is. I would gladly share my generator for people to chill down their refer/freezer, but the houses are too far apart here and the snow too deep to be hauling it around - plus I don't really have enough gas to supply the neighborhood. Several people here have whole house generators that flick on immediately when the power goes out. It's a little discouraging to be sitting in the dark and look out at their Christmas lights, lol.

Lukki, that is good news about your husband's doctor's optimism. Is medical marijuana legal where you are? Some people really swear by it for cancer pain control.

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DawnInCal

The long awaited snow finally arrived with a vengeance on Tuesday night. The power went out not only in my entire county but in many other North State locations as well from north of Chico (approx 1 hr, 40 min north of Sacramento) all the way to the Oregon border. There was no radio, mobile internet or cell phone service until today because the towers that provide these services were unreachable due to the heavy snow and their backup power sources ran out of fuel. There were also some parts that failed or were damaged.

Verizon finally brought in a Snowcat today, which made it possible to reach the towers, do the necessary repairs and refuel the generators. Cell service was restored about 30 minutes ago. A situation like this does make an argument in favor of keeping an active landline.

The other internet providers were also down; the only people who had internet were those with satellite internet and who own a generator so they could produce their own electricity. If we had been at home, we'd fall into this category.

We are not at home; this isn't our first rodeo and knowing what was coming, we opted to stay in town, but our neighbors report that there is three feet of snow at their house, which based on past experience, translates into four feet at ours. Several large trees came down across the road. One of them landed on the power lines and snapped a power pole in half like a toothpick.

Yesterday, utility workers using a snow plow were able to reach the tree that was laying on the lines and remove it. They were suppose to come back today to replace the broken power pole and fix the lines so hopefully electricity will be restored in my area sometime this afternoon/evening. We hope to go back home in about a week or when the snow melts enough to make the road passable. We figure we'll be walking in part of the way and that there will be trees to cut up and remove from the road before we can drive in.

While many are complaining about the length of time it's taking to restore electricity/phone/internet, I have nothing but admiration, respect and gratitude towards those workers who are out 24/7 in cold, wet, dangerous and difficult conditions doing their best to get our services back up and running. On Monday, I'm going to take a big plate of chocolate chip cookies over to the local office as a thank you for all their hard work.

What a wild ride that was!

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lukkiirish

Just coming back to this, thank you for the kind words. We haven’t looked into the pot aspect of it, but it was just legalized here during the last election. With the meds he’s on, I’m not sure it’s a viable option but I guess I should look into it.

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Olychick

Wow, Dawn, I hope things are soon back to normal. Staying in town wasn't an option here because the hotels in town didn't have power either! School was cancelled all this week because the school buses can't manage to get around on the secondary roads until they are plowed. Mine was finally plowed, but I had a terrible time getting back into my driveway, even with an awd German car. I got stuck halfway, had to back down and get a running start and hope I didnt' slide into the trees on the side of the driveway. Sheer determination got me back up to the garage. It's a longish driveway, not that steep, but a rise up from the road and hard to get a straight shot at it. There is still probably 6" of snow around my yard, compacted, slushy. But it was mostly sunny today and everyone I ran into was really happy, probably just to be out of the house!

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DawnInCal

Olychick, we have a small house in town that we stay in during things like extreme weather. There is a generator here that runs most of the electric, so we were quite cozy while the power was out. The power here has been back on since Thursday, but is still out at home. Latest update from the power company is that the electricity will be restored to our area on Wednesday.

We realized today that we have a freezer full of food that is probably going to have to be tossed since it will have been ten days since the power went out. The freezer is in the garage, it's full and it hasn't been opened so it's possible the food is still frozen or partially frozen, but we don't want to take the chance. We are going to try to get back up there before the electricity comes back on to see if it has thawed out. If not, it'll be safe to keep.

Our neighbor looked up the road towards our house today and tells us that he could see at least three trees across the road. We will have to cut those up before we can drive from his place to our house so the first time in we will have to walk the 1/4 mile distance. We'll get the chain saw, walk back and cut up the trees. Depending on how many are down and how big they are, it may take us a few days to get that job done. I'm thinking that the reasons so many trees came down in this storm are that the snow was wet and heavy, the ground is saturated and that many of the trees are diseased or weakened from the bark beetle infestation that is a result of the extended drought California has suffered for the last few years.

As mentioned in my last post, I made chocolate chip cookies today for the crews that are working on restoring the power in terribly adverse conditions. The cookies are also intended for the office staff that is dealing with the public, many of whom are not very nice due to their frustration of having to wait for days to get their power back on.

I'd post a photo of the cookies, but the internet is still too slow for posting pictures. There are either 8 or 9 dozen - I lost count. That ought to do the job. :-)

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Olychick

Oh my goodness, I'll be slower to whine about our power outage in the future! I think in 2012 it was off for close to a week and it was getting pretty old after that long. I thanked my lucky stars that I'd purchased a little generator, so I didn't lose my freezer food. If I remember correctly, it was quite cold out and so I just moved the refrigerated food out onto the porch in coolers and didn't lose any. This year, before the water quit flowing, I filled a bunch of mason jars with water and stuffed the refer full to the gills, then I only opened it to get milk for my morning coffee, so it stayed cold for a long time. I only hooked it up to the generator a few times to re-chill it all.

The yard is still blanketed with snow, but it's off the trees and melting off my walkways and driveway. I never did shovel it off...too much work and I wasn't expecting anyone to come by because my road was impassable. I have some chainsawing to do, too, but just broken ornamental trees and limbs that fell. It can wait until the snow is gone. Yours sounds like a mess and a lot of work. Ugh.

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socks

Los Angeles County has a homeless population of about 40,000, and a parade of heavy rains and nighttime chill have been impacting them especially those with other existing health problems. There may be hypothermia fatalities as in other years. Nothing like the extreme weather you are all experiencing, of course. It’s a tough winter across the country. Be safe everyone.

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Olychick

Socks, I thought of this each and every day I was trying to stay warm with a house, a wood stove and generator. How lucky I am to not be sleeping in the woods, or a doorway. Our community really pitched in to get people off the streets (even more than usual) and opened even more emergency shelters for folks. It's never enough and I'm sure people suffered greatly.

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socks

I think about this too, Olychick. Grateful for a good roof and heat. Oh yes, there are only about 10,000 beds available. Many live in their cars, RV's, etc., but others under bridges and often in drainage zones which is very dangerous. The authorities insist that those in flooding areas move. We have a few cool but sunny days ahead of us, and that will be appreciated by everyone.

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Elmer J Fudd

What to do for the homeless population is one of those problems without an obvious solution. I appreciate that many of these folks are "there" because of tragic life events, drug addiction or mental illness, often a combination of these and other things too. In my area, there are also able-bodied appearing people among these masses about whom one might assume that they're there as a lifestyle choice.

Many cities have found that when they expanded facilities and services, that caused a bigger problem because it served as a magnet for more homeless people to come.

Any suggestions?

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Olychick

One of my pet peeves is allowing mentally ill people to "choose" to live on the streets. Or drug addicted people. Both of those groups are defended as having a right to make that "choice" for themselves (to live on the streets, refuse treatment and/or shelter). While I know it's complicated because treatment doesn't work until one is ready to make that life changing choice to not use, I think allowing/facilitating harmful, life threatening choices by impaired people is a failure of our society.

People who are impaired by mental illness or addiction and refuse shelter/treatment, are making IMPAIRED "choices". We don't allow impaired people in other aspects of our society to make certain choices. We don't allow Alzheimer's patients to roam the streets because they "want" to or are frustrated, angry, whatever about being forced to live in a facility. We provide secure, safe places for them. I cannot see a difference between that and those impaired by mental illness or addiction being provided with safe and secure living situations. We don't hold impaired people accountable for certain and many actions, yet we allow them to make "decisions" that threaten their health, welfare and lives.

I know it's complicated and controversial, I understand it's a slippery slope, but I think what we are (not) doing now is inhumane. If forced shelter, medication, treatment is considered inhumane, as well, I'd rather we fell on that side rather than what we are doing (not doing) now.

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patriciae_gw

Olychick, I understand your point. We have gone too far from where we came from to reach where we are today. There has to be a kinder and gentler way to deal with these problems.

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Kathsgrdn

I'm no longer on the West coast but froze my behind off there. It's cold here but I was hoping for warmer weather out there. Flew yesterday into Chicago and was worried about the snow and flying out. We got delayed and then not-so delayed and flew out after deicing was done. I was wondering how long it took before the ice built back up after deicing as we sat on the runway for a long time afterwards waiting our turn to take off. Hope you all are staying warm out West and elsewhere.

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DawnInCal

We're now hearing that the power won't be on until Friday. I've offered our neighbors the use of the shower at our house in town. They have a generator, but it's not big enough to run their hot water heater.

For those who remember the tamale or spaghetti sauce threads, we will probably have to toss them all along with the beef, chicken and seafood that is in the freezer. I hate to waste the meat, but it really pains me to lose the sauce and the tamales. Ugh!

In the big picture,it's a small thing as I have much to be grateful about, but it still pains me to think about tossing all that food. On a lighter note, the cookies were a hit.


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marilyn_c

I remember those tamales. I love tamales....it pains me too. Sorry about losing the stuff in your freezer.

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DawnInCal

Thanks, Marilyn. Were going to attempt to go up to the house on Wed. We'll have to walk in for the last 1/4 mile. Today is seven days since the power went out, but may be we'll get lucky and the food will still be frozen. The freezer is in the garage, and cold as it's been, I suppose it's possible.

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Elmer J Fudd

That sounds awful, Dawn. Your house must be in a very remote area, or you have a small power company, or maybe both? Down here, other than for houses in isolated areas, PG+E for all its faults usually can get power restored in hours and in rare cases, in no more than a day or so.

Electricity companies do tend to band together and "loan" repair crews to one another when a particular area is hard hit. Are you seeing crews from other companies around?

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Kathsgrdn

A tree was down and knocked out power to our motel in Monterey when we were there. I was really expecting it to be back on when we woke up the next morning, but it wasn't. We got up late morning the next day and the guy at the front desk said they hadn't even started working on it. I was really surprised. He didn't sound hopeful so we moved to another motel about a block away that had power.

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Elmer J Fudd

I think you've said you're a nurse and so would know the term triage. With outages, the power companies use that approach and tend to work first on the line breaks that affect the greatest number of customers. The onesie-twosie outages are dealt with last.

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