Archive for the ‘Weather’ Category
Back to the weather . . . yesterday was remarkable for its rainbows. Huge, double, and long-lasting, they must have had everybody in the county with a cell phone out snapping pictures. Here are mine . . .
This one is a morning rainbow, in the west. It was glorious. If you look closely, you can see it was doubled.
The dark clouds rolled in during the afternoon. There’s a little bird in this shot, looking rather worried. He didn’t need to be; we got only a brief shower.
Then the afternoon rainbow. It was a clearly defined double.
All in all, it was a great day for rainbows. Today is a great day, period. There are riders going in every direction, enjoying the sun. Tomorrow the clouds are supposed to increase, with more rain in the forecast. We’re ready for it. I hope.
And more, and more, and more. We need every drop, but it needs to be coped with. The tractors have been running all day, draining pens and grading roads. About the time the crew gets caught up — it rains again.
One result of all the rain is the appearance of the Headless Dog Monster. This rare species loves to bask in front of a fire — even if it’s not real. Its name happens to be Peaches.
The little stove was a Christmas present from David. The dogs are enjoying it as much as we are. It’s certainly got realistic flames.
I can hear the tractor running now. We’ve got about four days, according to the forecasts, before it rains again. Sigh. Well, it’ll all be worth it when spring comes!
At least, it was running for a while in the last couple of days. Runoff from the massive rain gave us a preview of what we hope will be a good year for the Kern River.
Day before yesterday, it was running fast and high.
It always runs slower in the little backwater near the house, but there was a lot of debris in the flow. Even the dogs were hesitant about taking a dip. (You can see the main channel in the background. It was moving fast, and also carrying a lot of trash and debris.)
The next day, though, the same spot looked quite different.
The invasive water hyacinth had backed up behind brush and trees downed in the big fire a few years ago. This was the first time there had been enough flow for it to be a problem. There was a lot of water hyacinth.
Xena, as our Official Warrior Princess, checked it carefully for alligators.
There is, no doubt, much more backed up at the weirs downstream. It’s a mess.
Meanwhile, though, most of the horses were taking advantage of the brief break in the clouds to nap in the sun. Here are a couple of examples.
There’s more rain coming, but it doesn’t look like it’s going to be quite as powerful a storm. I didn’t think, a few weeks ago, that we’d ever be hoping for a break in the rain. We are now, but a brief break would be fine. Just so Mother Nature doesn’t turn off the waterworks for too long . . .
Or so it seems today. The last day of 2016 was marked by rainfall. A lot of rainfall. Snow in the mountains, too. In fact, the news said that we had set a record for December — an all-time record.
Last year, which was supposed to be a record-breaker, was pretty much a bust for us. Maybe this year will make up for it. We’re already close to the normal precipitation for the whole year.
Anyway, it was sure pretty outside this morning, and so great to see the snow in the mountains.
There was surprisingly little water on the ground. After the last big rain, the crew did a lot of tractor work, which no doubt helped. Still, in the above photo, you can see the tracks left by the feed truck this morning. It was deep, but they made it!
There wasn’t a lot of run-off in the river, either. It was gone by the time we got down there (me and the dogs, that is. If you look closely you will see a doggy tail.) except for a lot of mud.
There is more rain predicted for mid-week, and yet more for the weekend. It makes for a lot of work — muddy roads, wet pens, leaky tackrooms, and some enterprising horse turned on a hose and flooded his area — but it’s worth it. It’d sure be nice to have water in the river again this spring.
I woke up yesterday morning to a beautiful mother-of-pearl sunrise. Naturally, I got out with my camera . . .
A lot of places in the US — and even California — this wouldn’t be a Big Event. In Bakersfield, though, we are used to endless unchanging skies throughout the summer months, and beyond. I’ve seen afghans in which a strip a day is added, in the color of the sky for that day. They are beautiful, in many shades of blue, peach, gray, gold, and pink. Here, you would have pretty much a solid grayish blue blanket. There’s not much variety in our summer skies, except for a sullen orange night and morning during fire season. It’s been fire after fire this summer, and it’s not over yet.
Still, perhaps this short-lived change is a sign of times to come. Eventually. Well, there are back-to-school ads all over the place. That’s a sure sign that fall is coming, isn’t it? And fall can be lovely here — and great riding weather!
I haven’t been blogging much, because it’s just too hot. Too hot to be outside, too hot to do much of anything — though the really dedicated riders are managing. They come very early, though. They have to; it was in the nineties by ten o’clock. And the predictions are for temperatures to get hotter yet — up to 111.
So I’ll do what I often do in situations like this — post an old picture that makes me feel cooler. Here’s one from January 2013, when a hard freeze broke some water lines and gave us a crystal landscape.
Yes, that makes me feel a little cooler. Maybe I’ll go stick my head in the freezer for a while . . .
Last night we had the first storm that could be called worthy of El Nino. It was a genuine thunderstorm, with continuous rolling booms, near-continuous lightning, and everything. It rained hard; and every time it seemed as though it couldn’t possibly rain any harder — it did.
Here are the first signs of the storm rolling in, yesterday morning.
And here is the same view, this morning.
We’ll probably have to dig a small ditch to drain the large puddle/small lake in the arena, and then rip it deeply. It’ll be a little while before it’s usable again, unless we get some seahorses in.
As usual, the horses weren’t especially bothered by the storm. They seldom stay under their nice shelters, though, but go out and stand with their rumps to the driving rain. They don’t seem to like the sound of the rain drumming on the roof.
Some dogs are panicked by thunder, but none of ours have ever seemed to be bothered. That’s good; I’d hate to have them run off in terror. It’s a big river bottom out there.
Today, it’s unsettled, with clouds coming and going, but no more rain. I’d bet we got more than half an inch, but the official statistics may not agree! They seldom do, one way or the other.