Saturday, December 20, 2008

Snow on the Mountains

As I write this, the snow is falling outside, a winter snowfall warning is scheduled to descend on the lower mainland. I have been here for about 18 hours, having taken the overnight Greyhound from the Kootenays. Winter has not released its steely grip from the interior of BC, with winds and cold. The snow, therefore, has been minimal. Not such a happy time for the skiiers and snowboarders. During last night's journey, I travelled through most of southern BC, a total of 13 and a half hours, with only a smattering of sleep. There was much going on. Highlights included a fellow being arrested in Nelson, some very interesting travellers, and the temperature so cold on the Coquihalla that the front windshield of the bus froze. Brad, the bus driver who got us from Kelowna to Vancouver safely, said that the lowest temperature was minus 34. Yikes! I was glad that I brought along my blanket.

Tomorrow's plan is to go to Victoria, though there is some question whether that will happen as they too have a winter weather warning.

Snow, it seems, have quite the attraction for mountains. Some of the ski hills have snow depths of 10 and 12 feet in the midst of the winter. That means that some trees are well and truly buried under the white stuff. And they get winter much quicker than us in the valleys.

In October, I saw some of this evidence. When I was coming back from San Francisco, I got a beautiful view of snow having arrived. From my plane window, I saw two mountain tops. Later, I deducted that I had seen both Mt St Helens, the volcano that erupted in 1980, and Mt Rainier, which is the volcano that can be seen from Seattle.

Here are the both of them...

In the foreground is Mt St Helens.

Here is Mt St Helens as we moved closer... If you look carefully, you can see the other side is non-existent, the effects of that eruption over 28 years ago. The month of May. The same week my marriage disintegrated.

Even later, we went over top of Mt Rainier, which has plenty of snow...

The next morning, I travelled from Spokane to Nelson, amidst the beautiful fall colours...

That feels like an eternity ago. I am going to look at the snow falling outside now, and then to sleep for tomorrow's adventures.

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