I conducted a solo sunrise service this Easter morning. Well it was me and the cows. While doing calf check the sun came up directly over Lookout Mountain. A bit frosty but a bright beautiful Easter Sunday morning. HE IS ALIVE!!!
Amen, Webfoot. We are in the country blessed with dry wind and plenty of it, I'm hoping someplace gets enough rain to summer all the pairs that will be sold here. We have avoided fires here locally, so far. Seems like forever since the spring of '19 when we nearly drowned. I keep remembering Soap's quote; This too shall pass.
A serious wind came up last evening. Once it settled the rain was heavy all night long. The ground here is the wettest I have ever seen it. Looking in a newly dug six-foot-deep trench, the ground is saturated the entire depth. Water is standing on the normally dry hardpan at the bottom of the trench. This is a great start for spring and hopefully, we will have frequent rains during the summer. Our sandy loam soil can dry fast with desert winds, but we are off to a good start and the unirrigated pastures and rangeland are greener than I have ever seen. Horse Heavens does indeed have a heavenly look to it this spring.
Rain rain and more rain. It has been raining all night and all day and in the last half-hour a flash flood. Water is washing down the road like a stream. Record-breaking rainfall since fall. Rain is great, but sure wish we could share some with the dry areas. If we have a wet May and June, putting up hay will be a trick. Our first cutting is just two weeks away. Every year brings some extreme to challenge ranchers and farmers it seems.
It rained all night here. It is a beautiful sunny day with just a hint of a breeze. Beautiful. I too pray that drought areas get rain soon. Dos Arroyos needs rain and I bet even a gully washer would be welcome and he would be glad to change his name to Tres Arroyos.
It is raining and raining hard again today. I have never seen anything like this in the 46 years I have been in Eastern Oregon. I have a feeling we are in for a lot of rain through June. Certainly better to have more rain than less. I may have to break down and get a raincoat which is a rare site here in desert country.
I was dragging the field the cows had been in. It was a harrowing experience. Came in for lunch. The weather guessers said rain in the afternoon. They were right for once. Neither one of my tractors has a cab. So I guess the dragging will have to wait for tomorrow to finish. I saw where Portland had the wettest April on record. MC is closer to Portland than I am so she is getting all the benefit.
After I got rained out yesterday I tinkered around waiting for the guy from Idaho Power who was supposed to come. He brought some info about the big power line that is supposed to come through here. he said it snowed at the last place he had been. Showed me a picture where there was a couple inches of snow. Said it fell while he was there. In the Baker Valley! Later I went over to Baker to church. Sure enough they got snow yesterday in Baker. I guess they didn't get the memo that it is now May.
I got 0.35 inch yesterday. On Saturday I got 0.25 inch. Thursday was over a tenth. Grass is wanting to grow. But it sure has been cool. Moving the tarps on the irrigation in the mornings has made for cold fingers
Got another tenth a few days ago.Have a chance for some more.We usually get storms around "Cinco de Mayo".The bad part is there could be softball size hail with it and that is the start of tornado season here.I'm to the point one would be welcomed if I got a couple inches of rain with it.That's how dry it is here.
We missed a big chance for rain yesterday. We were supposed to have thunder and lightning and all we got was big black clouds and wind. Disappointing.
Cowboy State daily weatherman, Don Day, was quoted here about why the wind is blowing so much 'everywhere'.
So, has this winter/spring been windier than average?
Day says the answer is yes, but it has been the last 5 weeks of wind that has pushed people over the edge — not so much the wind between November and February.
He reminds us that March/April on average is one of the windiest times of the year in this region.
Day offers up a logical explanation: “Back to why it is so windy – I know folks are tired of me saying ‘La Nina’ but La Nina (which has going on for more than two years now) is a major culprit in our high winds. La Nina is when the subtropical Pacific Ocean (along the equator) is cooler than average, especially for long periods of time. It has nothing to do with climate change, it is the colder water that helps induce the high winds and dryness. It sounds counterintuitive but colder water in the subtropical Pacific usually means warmer, drier, and windier weather in western North America.”
I’ll let Don Day have the last words when it comes to all this wind:
He says: “When this state and region get hit with high winds it is usually from two types of patterns.
“First, strong west to east jet stream winds that run perpendicular to the Continental Divide – this causes the wind to be squeezed through the mountain gaps (i.e. Elk Mountain, Muddy Gap, etc.) causing strong wind events. La Nina helps to form very fast-moving jet stream winds. This is one reason for the drought, storms, and fronts move through fast, not having time to drop good amounts of rain/snow.
“Second, intense winter/spring storms that move on top or just north of the state. This pattern (the blizzards in ND/MT) has been responsible for the high wind. When strong low-pressure systems form in the region and pass to our north, the big difference in air pressure bring intense wind that can go on for days. This is common, especially in the spring. So, this spring, the high number of intense storms moving through the Pacific NW, MT, ND, NE WY brings very strong winds to the rest of WY, UT, CO, NE, NM, TX, OK.
“This spring the number of these intense spring storms is higher, which is ultimately good news for our friends to the north (moisture), while the rest of the region gets pummeled by the wind. When storms pass to our south (CO, NM) we don’t get the high winds.” He concludes: “By this time next year, La Nina will be gone but I can guarantee you someone will walk up to me and say: ‘I swear this is the worst year of wind I can remember. It’s been awful!’”
If you want to know about the past winds, go find a very old rancher and start talking about how bad the wind blows these days. You may hear something like this.....
"Well, I tell you young lady back in 29 I saw the wind blow cows over from the neighbor's several miles away. I couldn't ID the brand because the sand in the wind-scoured it right off. Poor things were hairless as a Chihuahua puppy dog."