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Winter is icumen in,

Lhude sing Goddamm,

Raineth drop and staineth slop,

And how the wind doth ramm!

Sing: Goddamm.

Skiddeth bus and sloppeth us,

An ague hath my ham.

Freezeth river, turneth liver,

Damm you; Sing: Goddamm.

Goddamm, Goddamm, 'tis why I am, Goddamm,

So 'gainst the winter's balm.

Sing goddamm, damm, sing goddamm,

Sing goddamm, sing goddamm, DAMM.

 

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Ish, if you have been sailing and taking pics in those bee-ooti-ful places, you deserve a little winter. :D

There is a season, etc.

January 20th, baby!

Hey. I'm sick of it too. Mrs. Bull and I goin' to the beach for the month of January. Bringin' some grandkids.

 

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The foul weather forecast for 12/31 did not materialize.

After shunting the next 1/3 ton of wood pellets to its convenient staging area for use, I decided that the sun shiny, 52F degree day could not go to waste. I implored my wife to drop whatever chore she was working on and we went out for a short motor sail. I don't live behind a lens so I didn't take any photos. Just use your imagination.

First, the tide was quite low so I cruised by High Island to witness its crown peeking from the water. High Island sunk years ago. It's only an island during the winter. The usual mallards have been replaced by bufflehead ducks and other winter water foul. We observed 2 adult bald eagles fishing.

Next, we'd heard of a sailboat that broke loose and was secured by the Natural Resources Police. They did a poor job of it and we found an un-masted, 33-35 foot racy looking boat solidly aground in the river. It appeared to have broken free from its temporary mooring. I suspect the mast was removed for maintenance before it broke free. The boat seemed similar in shape to my Tartan with the bow, sheer, rudder and reverse transom but the coach roof had a single, long, smoked plexi window. I'm not sure what it was. I'll try to get a photo later. Whatever it was, it was no ratty Catalina or typical liveaboard-gone-walkabout.

Finally, we observed a sailboat anchored with laundry drying all over the lifelines. It seemed anchored and occupied. I was curious as to whether these were hardy cruisers or the floating indigent. We watched an inflatable returning from shore with a dog aboard. It turns out that it's a very nice couple sailing an Albin Ballard with a dog and cat. They have a solid fuel stove onboard for heat. The boat was equipped with wind vane steering and seemed ready to go a long distance but the hailing port was up near Baltimore. The husband was Australian.  I don't really go out of my way to make friends but I'm kind of kicking myself for not offering an email address to this couple. They seemed very pleasant and capable.

1/1/2021 is cool, wet and miserable but tomorrow is forecast to be 60F and fairly sunny before the next round of rain. I'm definitely going out.

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38 minutes ago, Ajax said:

Finally, we observed a sailboat anchored with laundry drying all over the lifelines. It seemed anchored and occupied. I was curious as to whether these were hardy cruisers or the floating indigent.

That sounds like me....I always have my laundry out.  Even in some..."higher end" venues.  :P

 

 

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Today was great.  Perfect wind,  flat water.  I wore a wool sweater,  no jacket.  Buffleheads and surf scooters abound. I posted a photo of the grounded race boat elsewhere. 

I'm hopeful that I can get a lot more sailing in this winter. 

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On 12/31/2020 at 7:56 AM, bmiller said:

Winter has had its icy grip on my area for awhile. Yesterday just a few miles away at Antero reservoir it was -50f. My town was warmer, just 5 below. 

Yeah I'm over it. 

our winter has been freat so far..5-10 degrees C above longterm highs, 10-15 degrees above long term lows

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On 1/2/2021 at 7:14 PM, Ishmael said:

It rained all day. A bunch of ferry sailings cancelled because of strong winds. Not a great sailing day, unfortunately.

waterfront.jpg.043022aef495ec196d09e41cb204df98.jpg

 

Is that a music shell for performing music on the lawn?! Used to be one here but much larger. We’d walk a few miles as kids to watch the old men play John Phillips Souza pieces in the summer. 
 

It was destroyed and waterfront condos were built in its place

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28 minutes ago, Sail4beer said:

Is that a music shell for performing music on the lawn?! Used to be one here but much larger. We’d walk a few miles as kids to watch the old men play John Phillips Souza pieces in the summer. 
 

It was destroyed and waterfront condos were built in its place

That's the Sidney Opera House.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Winter isn't cumin in as fast as I thought.

We motored over to Sidney Spit a couple of days ago, caught a mooring ball, and had hot dogs on the barbie. 0-2 Beaufort.

spit.thumb.jpg.9821a4b529244896540998d1c53901be.jpg

Motored back to the marina, and just outside the breakwater we picked up a float and some rope. Did some back and forward and after some impressive noises we expelled a bright red foam float with no ID. I picked up the floating line behind the boat and pulled it off tight to the side and we made it back to our slip with no issues.

So this is what we found when we went out today. I sent down the Gopro and checked it out so I knew what we were dealing with. We got very lucky.

GOPR0082.MP4_snapshot_00_54_388.thumb.jpg.1481cf2b4b8f1890afbd14dcf52c7d56.jpg

With the aid of four extending boathooks, my wife, duct tape and luck, I managed to cut the line free, from the dock. Hats off to Dexter Russel line knives. Those things are magic.

poles.thumb.jpg.3fb453853d59a7aa84bd0c95fab34a53.jpg

 

 

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I think I'm going to install a shaft line cutter before I depart for Maine. I'll probably make some watermen mighty angry.

 

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I don’t see the need for line cutters. I dodge pots under power but rarely under sail. 

I may be justifying my parsimonious ways....but I don’t think I’d want to put my shaft, cutless and p-strut under the kinds of loads that wrapping and cutting a line would put them under.  I think all line cutters do is ensure that when you wrap things up it’s much harder to get off.  

Invest in a nice Myerchin fixed blade you can tie to a boat hook for the occasional pot that catches somewhere. 
 

 

 

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3 hours ago, Jim in Halifax said:

What's the water temperature in the Salish Sea this time of year? Didn't fancy a polar bear dip?

My wife swims year round now, (in the Strait, technically a part of the broader Salish Sea...Environment Canada’s marine forecasts still refer to Georgia Strait...) as of last November, and she doesn’t like cold!  Wears a good wetsuit, etc. of course.  

I really see the value of having some kind of basic cold water swim stuff on board - for maintenance, emergencies, whatever it may be.  (And very sharp knives...) Even recreational swimming —but I’ll leave that to her :-).  Not for me!

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1 hour ago, Jud - s/v Sputnik said:

My wife swims year round now, (in the Strait, technically a part of the broader Salish Sea...Environment Canada’s marine forecasts still refer to Georgia Strait...) as of last November, and she doesn’t like cold!  Wears a good wetsuit, etc. of course.  

I really see the value of having some kind of basic cold water swim stuff on board - for maintenance, emergencies, whatever it may be.  (And very sharp knives...) Even recreational swimming —but I’ll leave that to her :-).  Not for me!

You'd better get an Orca rider on her life insurance policy. She must look like a tasty snack.

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1 hour ago, Kris Cringle said:

Don't worry about the buoys, it's the granite bars lying a few feet below (foreground), that keep the Maine boat repair industry vibrant. 

775333002_Lobstertrapbuoys2020._.thumb.jpg.55df5e7b171a0c2d221c4e85d4ebbecc.jpg

Yeah...just when I'd convinced myself not to freak out about all the crunchy bits in your sailing venue.

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4 hours ago, Jim in Halifax said:

What's the water temperature in the Salish Sea this time of year? Didn't fancy a polar bear dip?

Where we are, it's close to the same temperature year round, about 10°C. No way I was going in there, plan B was to call in a diver.

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The rocks haven't moved, people just forget where they are from time-to-time. You just need to get comfortable that they are there. 

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When in doubt, go slow. 

ACtC-3co0CssRkpqLOLWvrunk3yjLXGF7hy70oZi

 

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12 minutes ago, Ishmael said:

Where we are, it's close to the same temperature year round, about 10°C. No way I was going in there, plan B was to call in a diver.

 

Yes - but it feels frabjous colder in the winter when you get out, b/c the air temp is much colder!  I’ll dive until October - after that I’m a wimp.  But I would dive in an emergency, if I had to (with suit!).

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51 minutes ago, Jud - s/v Sputnik said:

 

Yes - but it feels frabjous colder in the winter when you get out, b/c the air temp is much colder!  I’ll dive until October - after that I’m a wimp.  But I would dive in an emergency, if I had to (with suit!).

I have been half-assed looking for a wetsuit for jaunts like this. I do keep a mask and snorkel on the boat, if it's that big an emergency I'll take the hit. 

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12 hours ago, Ishmael said:

Motored back to the marina, and just outside the breakwater we picked up a float and some rope. Did some back and forward and after some impressive noises we expelled a bright red foam float with no ID. I picked up the floating line behind the boat and pulled it off tight to the side and we made it back to our slip with no issues.

With the aid of four extending boathooks, my wife, duct tape and luck, I managed to cut the line free, from the dock. Hats off to Dexter Russel line knives. Those things are magic.

There is a tool for that. Sharp enough to take off your arm without a lot of effort. Goes right on the end of your boathook. Just having it onboard has scared off all the lines, haven't hooked one since I got it. 

CH03_1.jpg.1fe3042100c9cc92d93ec620f7dba392.jpg

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1 hour ago, Ishmael said:

I have been half-assed looking for a wetsuit for jaunts like this. I do keep a mask and snorkel on the boat, if it's that big an emergency I'll take the hit. 

It is worth it.  I’ve got a hybrid drysuit- “bag” on the top (like a standard “bag” drysuit, thick neoprene on the bottom.  Rather cheaper a regular drysuit (they’re very pricey),  good enough for what I do, and b/c the top is a bag-type it’s less bulky than a neoprene 2-piece wetsuit.  (The challenge is storage: for storage, I built a special deck box that mounts on deck behind the mast for storing “wet” gear (and crab trap) - very hard to find room inside the boat to store bulky stuff like that, and I’d prefer not to have stuff like that inside anyway.)

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8 hours ago, Jud - s/v Sputnik said:

My wife swims year round now, (in the Strait, technically a part of the broader Salish Sea...Environment Canada’s marine forecasts still refer to Georgia Strait...) as of last November, and she doesn’t like cold!  Wears a good wetsuit, etc. of course.  

I really see the value of having some kind of basic cold water swim stuff on board - for maintenance, emergencies, whatever it may be.  (And very sharp knives...) Even recreational swimming —but I’ll leave that to her :-).  Not for me!

Where I take the dog for her walk, there is a sandy bar that joins an island to my road for a couple of hours at low tide. When the timing is right, we cross the bar and head to the island for some off-leash time. Heading across the sand a couple of days ago, we encountered a young lady (young enough to be my daughter) coming out of the water in a two-piece, à la Ursula Andress in Canonball..."What IS the water temperature?" asks I, trying hard to maintain eye contact. "About 7C" she replies. "It is my New Year's resolution to swim in the ocean every day this month". Since this encounter, I have been avoiding the sandbar at low tide. The thought of it makes me ache in more ways than one...

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Since the first eye-opening incident, I have been keeping my second-best wetsuit and set of snorkel gear on board.  There's a wide shallow space under the back of the quarterberth that isn't much use for anything else.  FWIW, I used to make a point of diving every month of the year in the Salish Sea, long before I could afford a drysuit.  It's much warmer than the Columbia in winter.  

For similar reasons, I try to never sail without a dinghy on board, even it's just an inflatable SUP in the sail locker.  

Last time I had a vacation to someplace warm, I was on a "sunset dinner cruise" thing and while getting underway, they snagged a neighbors mooring.  I thought "Oh shit! That's the end of this little jaunt."  But the owners kid just grabbed a mask and casually hopped over the side - had it cleared in about a minute.  Nobody got excited or raised an eyebrow.  Just like my Dad might have told me to get out of the truck and open a gate.  One of those moments that had me questioning why I even bother to live around cold water.  

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It's not all wine and roses here. We had ice on top of the salt water a couple of weeks ago. And probably again, in a few days. Crap. I was hoping to avoid snow this year. 

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It's tales like these that make me decide to stay where I am!

Water temp is now 22C, I go for an ocean swim every morning until May-June when it dips below 20. Gets down to 16-17 in late winter; I can manage that with a wetsuit if I need to dive the boat - for a few minutes only.

 

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12 hours ago, Jim in Halifax said:

Where I take the dog for her walk, there is a sandy bar that joins an island to my road for a couple of hours at low tide. When the timing is right, we cross the bar and head to the island for some off-leash time. Heading across the sand a couple of days ago, we encountered a young lady (young enough to be my daughter) coming out of the water in a two-piece, à la Ursula Andress in Canonball Thunderball..."What IS the water temperature?" asks I, trying hard to maintain eye contact. "About 7C" she replies. "It is my New Year's resolution to swim in the ocean every day this month". Since this encounter, I have been avoiding the sandbar at low tide. The thought of it makes me ache in more ways than one...

FIFM 

Fuck. Oldtimers disease is getting worse.

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Water temp off San Diego's Mission Beach is about 58 now (14.4C). As I get older the surfing wet suits I buy get thicker-presently using one with 4mm around the body and 3mm for arms and shoulders. Sure as hell when I go out there are people out there trunking, I have no idea why, except some could be tourists from Michigan.

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16 minutes ago, kinardly said:

Water temp off San Diego's Mission Beach is about 58 now (14.4C). As I get older the surfing wet suits I buy get thicker-presently using one with 4mm around the body and 3mm for arms and shoulders. Sure as hell when I go out there are people out there trunking, I have no idea why, except some could be tourists from Michigan.

My ex-dive instructor friend recommended 6-8mm wet suits for these waters. I have my eyes open for a used one, it would be handy to have. 

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23 minutes ago, Ishmael said:

My ex-dive instructor friend recommended 6-8mm wet suits for these waters. I have my eyes open for a used one, it would be handy to have. 

Might be overkill. How many hours do you plan on spending an hour under water where the suit is compressed? I use an old windsurfing  2/3mm wetsuit and a little warm water, if I use anything at all, but trips are very short. 

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I used to use the farmer john + jacket suit, so there would be two layers - like 14 mm - over the body core for diving. But you could also wear either piece alone for surface activities.

I may still have one in good condition stashed away - they shrink over time you know.  Or something. :huh:  But you really have to try them on, so best to buy local.  

S6026-2.png

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6 hours ago, Elegua said:

Might be overkill. How many hours do you plan on spending an hour under water where the suit is compressed? I use an old windsurfing  2/3mm wetsuit and a little warm water, if I use anything at all, but trips are very short. 

I'd probably go for a 4mm suit if one came up at the right price, but all the commercial divers here use drysuits even for minor bottom jobs so my dislike of getting cold underwater is deserved. If I had to do 10 minutes, OK. 

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9 hours ago, kinardly said:

Water temp off San Diego's Mission Beach is about 58 now (14.4C). As I get older the surfing wet suits I buy get thicker-presently using one with 4mm around the body and 3mm for arms and shoulders. Sure as hell when I go out there are people out there trunking, I have no idea why, except some could be tourists from Michigan.

Moved to LA in the 80s. Headed down to Santa Monica beach, water was freezing and pitiful surf - almost got on the next plane home!

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50F and sunny with a blustery breeze that settled down, yesterday. I went sailing after work.

The extra 30 minutes of sunlight now that we're past the solstice is just enough to make it worth going out. I did arrive back at the dock about 10 minutes after sunset. Although the air was 50F on land, it was more like 39F on the water.

The tide was way way, out due to the wind direction and being at neap tide. I would have been grounded in my slip if I hadn't moved to the very end of the dock. I still plowed a light furrow in the mud and only had inches of clearance for nearly 1/8th of a mile.

I uncovered the mainsail but never used it, just wanking along on the winter jib, making 4-5 knots. No other boats, lots of waterfowl diving, splashing, crashing into the water. The sunset and twilight were colorful and crystal clear, without a cloud in the sky as I tied up and the cove was blissfully silent.

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1 hour ago, Ajax said:

50F and sunny with a blustery breeze that settled down, yesterday. I went sailing after work.

The extra 30 minutes of sunlight now that we're past the solstice is just enough to make it worth going out. I did arrive back at the dock about 10 minutes after sunset. Although the air was 50F on land, it was more like 39F on the water.

The tide was way way, out due to the wind direction and being at neap tide. I would have been grounded in my slip if I hadn't moved to the very end of the dock. I still plowed a light furrow in the mud and only had inches of clearance for nearly 1/8th of a mile.

I uncovered the mainsail but never used it, just wanking along on the winter jib, making 4-5 knots. No other boats, lots of waterfowl diving, splashing, crashing into the water. The sunset and twilight were colorful and crystal clear, without a cloud in the sky as I tied up and the cove was blissfully silent.

You bastard!

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9 minutes ago, Elegua said:

You bastard!

Next time I need to bring a hot beverage or soup. That really would have made it.

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12 hours ago, Ishmael said:

I'd probably go for a 4mm suit if one came up at the right price, but all the commercial divers here use drysuits even for minor bottom jobs so my dislike of getting cold underwater is deserved. If I had to do 10 minutes, OK. 

Dry suits are the bomb. I bought a Kokatat to sail on a lake in China and have used it for everything since.  No one enjoys extreme shrinkage, but I really feel claustrophobic in thick wetsuits.  Booties and a hood help a lot. A pot of warm water for a shower after you get out feels great, too. 

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1 hour ago, Elegua said:

Dry suits are the bomb. I bought a Kokatat to sail on a lake in China and have used it for everything since.  No one enjoys extreme shrinkage, but I really feel claustrophobic in thick wetsuits.  Booties and a hood help a lot. A pot of warm water for a shower after you get out feels great, too. 

Hood is key.

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13 hours ago, longy said:

Haven't seem Hanauma bay that vacant in many decades

 

2 hours ago, Ajax said:

Is it vacant because of COVID?

 

My daughter shot that before it opened. The crowd size is limited due to COVID, but it's still pretty much a zoo. I haven't snorkeled there for ~20 years because of the crowds. I've found some spots on the North Shore and West Side that are better in many ways. Unfortunately those spots are a bit dangerous in the winter months. :-) 

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The US has had 2 mild winters in a row. Wait till the pendulum finally swings the other way. I'll bet the Great Lakes and East Coast get hammered. Maybe as early as next year.

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30 minutes ago, Ajax said:

The US has had 2 mild winters in a row. Wait till the pendulum finally swings the other way. I'll bet the Great Lakes and East Coast get hammered. Maybe as early as next year.

Dunno... last year I got out the long woolies in October and had to wear them until April.  Didn't seem very "mild" around here.  Although it wasn't ever sub-zero, conditions set up so that the snow and ice just lasted forever.  Didn't get the top off the Jeep until July, which was like, the latest ever.  

Yes, this year has been mild so far, but it ain't over. 7-day forecast has snow every day atm.  

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On 1/18/2021 at 3:27 PM, Jim in Halifax said:

Where I take the dog for her walk, there is a sandy bar that joins an island to my road for a couple of hours at low tide. When the timing is right, we cross the bar and head to the island for some off-leash time. Heading across the sand a couple of days ago, we encountered a young lady (young enough to be my daughter) coming out of the water in a two-piece, à la Ursula Andress in Canonball..."What IS the water temperature?" asks I, trying hard to maintain eye contact. "About 7C" she replies. "It is my New Year's resolution to swim in the ocean every day this month". Since this encounter, I have been avoiding the sandbar at low tide. The thought of it makes me ache in more ways than one...

Our first snow day this winter.

My wife is going swimming.

I have the diesel heater going on board as I begin finalizing wiring for new electric windlass install. The cabin thermostat is stuck on Fahrenheit, but it’s cold enough that the wire is plenty stiff to work with :-)  I think I’m going to pipe in another 3” duct off my heater chimney’s heat scavenger to send heat low, down to the main cabin floor. (I installed one already that blows hot air into the forward cabin.)

Enjoy the swim, ladies :-)

CDFAC1BF-4992-4E43-A404-058C439C557D.jpeg

FB99F0CD-A7A2-4170-A2E1-6025C8207781.jpeg

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4 hours ago, Jud - s/v Sputnik said:

Brutal, cold, wet, heavy snow. Classic West Coast cement. Ready for spring :-)

Juan de Fuca - totally different weather pattern down there!

I have a firm rule down here - first decent snowfall on Mt Wellington and I book a ferry ticket north.

Winter in Sydney or my country place in NSW is a lot warmer than here. I return in the spring.

FKT

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On 1/26/2021 at 8:20 PM, Fah Kiew Tu said:

I have a firm rule down here - first decent snowfall on Mt Wellington and I book a ferry ticket north.

Winter in Sydney or my country place in NSW is a lot warmer than here. I return in the spring.

FKT

2017 Wooden Boat show in Hobart, we went up Mt Wellington and it started snowing; mid-Feb, mid-summer!

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10 minutes ago, Fleetwood said:

2017 Wooden Boat show in Hobart, we went up Mt Wellington and it started snowing; mid-Feb, mid-summer!

Well yeah - there is that. Can be 36C one day and snowing the next.

Still better than 40C plus for day after day after day and damn near 100% humidity.

Now it's February, summer should be just around the corner... almost got the diesel heater sorted at last.

FKT

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On 1/26/2021 at 8:20 PM, Fah Kiew Tu said:

I have a firm rule down here - first decent snowfall on Mt Wellington and I book a ferry ticket north.

Winter in Sydney or my country place in NSW is a lot warmer than here. I return in the spring.

FKT

Wise

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56 minutes ago, Fleetwood said:

That's the dismal city, I'm in Sinny.

That's the summer shit-hole I was referring to.

I spent most of my adult life in Sydney. In winter it's nice, provided you don't drive anywhere and don't use public transport during peak hour. Fortunately I have a Senior's card and a gold Opal card...

Summer in Sydney - no way. Hobart is so much nicer.

FKT

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Whew, winter is icumin in, indeed. I'm glad I got some sailing while I could.

3 days of snow, ice, sleet and more snow. Not a lot of accumulation but a perpetual and thick icy coating.

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Fucking groundhog!

Pretty nice mostly sunny morning and the afternoon forecast even better.  Promised the dog a nice hike after I finish one more report.

Suddenly everything got dark, there's rain and hail blowing sideways, and the entire 10-day forecast has shifted down ten degrees since this morning.

WTF just happened?  

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Went skiing in upper peninsula of Michigan and took an afternoon off to go up to Lake Superior at Ashland. Here’s my daughter’s Instagram.

 

3EBB3F85-E4F7-409D-AAA1-A05BF1E60E3C.jpeg

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Sunday we should get very nice black ice on our local lake in East Central Illinois, which will make for great ice-boating on Monday.

 

Screen Shot 2021-02-02 at 2.53.21 PM.png

Screen Shot 2021-02-02 at 2.53.37 PM.png

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On 12/31/2020 at 6:56 AM, bmiller said:

Winter has had its icy grip on my area for awhile. Yesterday just a few miles away at Antero reservoir it was -50f. My town was warmer, just 5 below. 

Yeah I'm over it. 

LOL, 65 today Mr Miller...  You gotta move to this side of the divide...  LOL

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