Category: Climate Weather

Frozen

It was very cold here in Alberta in late December 2017 and early January 2018. The overnight low temperatures were below -20C (-4F) for 7 days straight during the holiday season. The lowest temperature was -31C (-24F). January 2018 was briefly milder before sinking into another 4 day stretch of extreme cold. When it finally warmed up to a balmy -8C we packed the Jeep and made a dash to warmer climates for a while!

As Alberta was plunged into extreme cold warnings on Boxing Day…  Alberta was about as cold as Mars’ Gale Crater, the home of the Curiosity rover. Mars is subject to pretty violent temperatures shifts, and Curiosity regularly encounters temperatures below -80 C. But this week, the highest temperature experienced by the rover were -23 C. A Calgary Boxing Day shopper, therefore, might have found themselves getting into a car that was literally colder than a Martian spacecraft.
– Tristin Hopper, National Post, Dec 27, 2017 –

Snow Flakes, sharpened and color corrected

We spent a lot of time indoors in December and January. Inconveniently, it snowed regularly. I did a lot of snow shoveling, but only for short periods of time. It was just too cold. As for The Car Guy and the tractor – neither would start on several occasions…

Canada is one of the coldest countries in the world, having an average yearly temperature of about -5C. Viewed through this lens, it is no wonder that by the New Year we start to forget that we ever had summer…

By January it had always been winter.
– Annie Proulx, Shipping News –

How has your winter been so far?

Experimental – Snow Scenes

In this Experiment, I will coat the landscape with a heavy frost (duration: 2 days). Then, I will add a thick layer of snow (duration: 1 day). Next, I will illuminate the scene with approximately 32,000 (or maybe more) lumens per square meter of sunshine, and quickly photograph the results in sub-sub freezing temperatures.

I will run the photos through a ‘filter machine’ called Topaz Studio. The experimental results are as follows:

ice snow

Rose Hips coated with ice and snow – no filter

ice snow filter

Rose Hips with a spikey (spiky) filter

Rose Hips with a painting filter

Rose Hips with a flow filter

white brown

Tall Grass covered in ice and snow – no filter

Tall Grass with a spikey (spiky) filter

Tall Grass with a Line filter

Experiment Conclusion:

  • Filters are a great way to alter a photo and spend time indoors – out of the cold.
  • Winter has arrived a bit early here in Alberta. It is warm and dry in Arizona. While I am glad I had the opportunity to experience this ice/snow storm, I’ll be glad to finally head south for a few months in the New Year…

This week’s WordPress.com Photo Challenge is Experimental.

Windows – Watching a Fall Snow Storm

snow storm

A lacy pattern of ice on the window.

The first snow storm of the winter season, except it is supposed to be Fall…

Oh, the weather outside is frightful!
But furnace heat is delightful.
With the roads closed we can’t go,
Stop the wind, stop the cold, stop the snow!
– Margy, with help from the Christmas Carol ‘Let it Snow’ –

Topaz filter

The same photo with a crackle filter applied.

Here are some other Window posts I’ve done and a Gallery of Window Photos I’ve taken:

Reflections in a Window

Seeing Through Windows and Doors

Paths – Water on a Window

Cleaning Windows

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge is Windows (again).

Has the weather been unseasonably anything in your part of the world in the past few months?

Shadows on the Snow – a Mystery Shape

I call them Crystal Days. When the morning sun falls on the right kind of new snow, each snow flake glitters like a crystal.

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This photo was taken on a Crystal Day, mid December, a few years ago.  The overnight snowfall had turned our yard into a series of snow mounds, each sparkling in the morning sun. The snow pattern in this photo was particularly interesting. What had been a grid, was now a geometric series of hills and valleys, with each hill casting a shadow into the valley. Nearby objects added splashes of shadow too.

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Here is a closer look at one of the valleys. Now you can see the sparkles of the snow crystals on the hill surface.

Unfortunately, I can’t remember what was under the snow. Whatever it was, it had to have been a nearly horizontal surface. It was something in my yard and it was apparently familiar enough that I didn’t bother to take another photo that put this one into context. I didn’t even see the need to change the name of the photo from P1060359 to something a bit more useful. Drat…

Here are some more shadow photos. Click on any of them to open a slideshow.

If you have any suggestions as to what created my snow shadow mystery, please leave a comment!

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge is Shadow.

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Whatever Floats Your Boat – The Magic of Water

H2O – Water as Snowflakes
Autumn in Alberta. Like any other season here in the Foothills of the Rocky Mountains, the weather can be unpredictable. The first snowfall of the season can be early, or it can be late, but it is rarely welcome for adults. It often causes a delay in harvesting. It invariably results in highway accidents – road conditions deteriorate before  winter driving skills kick in.

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Our first snowfall was a few days ago. A foggy, snowy photo is not a cheery sight, so I made it more presentable by applying a ‘Colored Pencil’ filter.

H2O – Water as Ice
A few days later the sun returned and the garden was transformed into a wonderland coated with ice. You can see these photos at my other blog – Frozen Leaves Encased in Ice.

H2O – Water as Water
You could also wander over to my other blog and meet the incredibly cute Northern Cardinal that took a bath in my sprinkler: A Wet Northern Cardinal.

So why a new blog?
I could tell you it started, as these things do, with minor annoyances. Unaddressed, these became regular disagreements, then acrimonious arguments. When all parties were pettily pissed off, The Birds started tweeting their displeasure with being housed with Politicians. The Flowers unfriended all The Car Guys Vehicles. They all declared they were going to move out.

That is mere fantasy, of course. The simple answer is, I had enough material to create specialty blogs for the things that interest me the most.  So I moved a bunch of posts to a new home.

As moves go, it has been quite straight forward, though time consuming. The exiting parties wanted to take all their belongings with them, including all the nice comments that have been made about them. WordPress provides an ‘Export’ tool for that. Unfortunately, the export is hit or miss in the media department, so it has taken a bit of time to move the missing photos.

The Birds, Flowers and Insects  built their nests and beds at https://birdsbloomsbugs.com/.

Last but not least, The Quotations, fearful of forever being associated with the mundane topics of weather, pots and pans… and dreadful puns – moved to The Quippery.

Do you have more than one blog? If you were going to split your blog up, what interests would move to a new home?

All the water photos were my contribution to this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge which is H2O.

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