Random Morning Thoughts
I’m taking an Intentional Peer Support class in The Dalles this week. More on what that is at some other time. But I will say that the people taking this class are from all sorts of backgrounds, have a pretty high level of self-awareness, have struggled a lot in their lives, and have come out of their struggles unique and interesting and engaging and with a lot of wisdom. Not only that, but these folks aren’t pretending to be anyone but who they are – they’re being very real and genuine. That part’s important.
During the class yesterday, the instructor put up a PowerPoint* about a self-doubt cycle: “I learn to act as if I don’t think I’m (bad/weird/crazy/etc) – People say they like me – Because I feel like I’m putting on an act, I think, “You wouldn’t like me if you really knew me” – I feel split in two…” I looked around the room while this slide was up, and all these interesting and unique and strong people were nodding their heads.
It was a “holy ****” moment for me. I see all these people as pretty damned cool, and they probably think I’m pretty cool too, and we are all trapped in this cycle of thinking people wouldn’t like us if they knew us. But in that room, we’re being really real. And we like each other.
All those nodding heads got me thinking – we’re all in the same self-doubt boat. But people still want to be our friends. They want to spend time with us. And believe it or not, the more we let them in and show them the doubting parts, the more interesting and complex and loveable and un-leaveable we become. I can’t prove this to you. But I can tell you from experience that the more I let people in, the more they soothe and quiet the parts that think, “You wouldn’t like me if you really knew me.” Try it out. Just a little bit at time. You’ll be surprised, and maybe your version of my instructor’s PowerPoint* will become quieter too.
*PowerPoint reference in memory of Matt Klee
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We’re continuing to see an open door to Pacific weather systems, and that does not leave us with a good setup for either east wind or west wind through the Gorge. Expect light westerlies this morning, maybe bumping up to 13-16 briefly after noon and before 5pm, when the skies will open up. Tomorrow starts with light wind and stays that way in the central Gorge. Strong gradients in the desert might give us a period of up-and-down, gusty 23-26 at the far east beach (Arlington, Threemile, Boardman) tomorrow afternoon. Expect westerlies at 8-11 on Thursday.
Looking ahead to the weekend, so far out that the models aren’t reliable at all (they get less reliable the more “stuff” is happening, and there’s a lot of “stuff” happening), it’s looking like a monster low will move eastward across the state (I think it’s the remains of Hurricane Ana), giving us a big shot of west wind east of … Mosier? The Dalles? Maryhill? Somewhere out east will be windy on Saturday if this actually comes to pass.
Out on the coast, you will see this: Today, S 40-50+, combined 14@14. Tomorrow: S 40-50, combined 17@12. Thursday, SW 20-25, W 10@12, W 6@8.
Mt. Hood Snow
It doesn’t look very snowy on Mt. Hood, but it does look really rainy, so I thought it was a nice time to switch to the snow table, rather than the wind table. The snow level today will be 9000-10,000′, and we’ll see 4-6” of rain by Thursday morning. Neat! Wind today will be SW 30-40. Tomorrow brings more rain on Mt. Hood, but of a more showery nature, for 1” or so, tapering off in the afternoon with a few sunbreaks possible. The snow level will be 8500′ as the weather system moves through, dropping to 6500′ overnight after most of the moisture has fallen. We might see a dusting of new at the resorts. Or maybe not. Wind will be SW 40 on Thursday. Friday starts off partly cloudy with the freezing level around 6500′. As the next system hits midday, the snow level will rise to 9000-10,000′ with SW wind at 30-40.
It’s still a poopy-doopy setup for Gorge wind, and as you may have noticed, I’ve given up on the wind table for the season. It’ll be back next summer, don’t you worry. And I haven’t given up on the wind. Just on the table. But for now, it’s all text, all the time for the wind forecast. We started off today with an east gradient of .05 and east wind in the teens at Rooster. Don’t count on those easterlies lasting a long time today, as a weather system will swing the gradient onshore. We’ll see less than 10mph in the western Gorge, but the far east beaches (Arlington and further) will see some up-and-down, gusty, rainy west wind maxing out at 24-27 this afternoon. We might see some gusty 15-18 at Maryhill, but I’m not putting money on that. Is it worth the drive? Hmmm… you’re going to have to make that call. Tomorrow looks a little more promising.
Tomorrow sees today’s weather system head east, and that will give a little more oomph to the wind. Expect light wind in the morning, picking up after noon to gusty 11-14 in the western Gorge. Doug’s, Rowena and Maryhill are up in the air with gusty 15-18 possible with a little better chance of 21-24 at Maryhill. Further east, at Arlington, Threemile, and the rest of the sagebrush beaches, expect up-and-down and gusty 25-29 after noon, lasting until dusk.
Friday starts out light and variable, but a big ol’ low pressure system approaching the Oregon coast will turn the gradient sharply offshore by midday, for easterlies (very wet easterlies – very rainy easterlies) at 25-29+.
Looking ahead to the weekend, the timing of that low moving onshore is shifting around, and that’s shifting the wind forecast around. As of this morning, it looks like we’ll see very strong west wind Saturday night into Sunday.
As you may have gathered from reading the snow and wind forecasts, it’s going to be rather wet around here for the next couple of days. Expect rain today, becoming heavy in the afternoon and heavier than heavy overnight. Want to stay dry when you play? Better get out early or head east. Temps will be in the low 50’s early and upper 50’s in the afternoon. Rainbow chances are less than 10% today.
Tomorrow starts off with heavy rain as this pesky atmospheric-river-driven system moves east at its own pace (slow). Temps will be in the low 50’s early and the low 60’s in the afternoon. By afternoon, as we see showers rather than downpours, we’ll see sunbreaks. And that will give us rainbows. 98% chance tomorrow afternoon. And a 63% chance of a colorful sunrise. Best chance for dry time outside is Friday afternoon.
Friday starts out cloudy and dry, probably with a low inversion cloud, but possibly with all sorts of clouds at all levels. Get outside and play before noon, because that’s when the heavy rain will start. Temps Friday will be in the upper 40’s early and low 60’s in the afternoon. Rainbow chances are 17%.
White Sprinter Van of the Day
Road and Mountain Biking
Ok. Someone give me a trail report. I’ve been in The Dalles for the last couple days and have no idea what’s going on out there. I do know that today’s incoming system is going to shut down Post for a day or two due to mud, so be aware and ride with care.
Road riders, do not forget the Travel Advisory Process open house at 5:30-7:30 at the Parkdale Ranger Station on Wednesday. If you want Vista Ridge to stay paved, please be there. And if you’d like to help rally the troops to write letters (I won’t ask more than 2 hours per week of you), please contact me.
River Levels / Fish Counts/Cheezburger Update
The John Day Dam is reading 65-71kcfs. The Dalles Dam is putting out 72kcfs. There are two river-wide logs on the White Salmon: one just below Cave Rapid on the Middle and one below Cave Wave on the Lower. The White Salmon is around 1.7′. The Hood is at 3.4′, so not high enough yet. Yesterday’s fish counts were not up when I got up this morning, much earlier than expected because a power outage yesterday reset my alarm clock and woke me up at 5am. Columbia River temp is 64 degrees.
Events – email me if I’ve missed any outdoor-related events
This week contains Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine Day, and Cascade Acupuncture has free mini acupuncture sessions all week long to celebrate. You do have to make an appointment. Today is the Travel Advisory Process meeting at the Parkdale Ranger Station (5:30-7:30) to give input on keeping Vista Ridge paved. After that, Columbia Center for the Arts hosts world-renowned mushroom photographer Taylor Lockwood (7:30, $5).
Coming up on Saturday, it’s the American Meteorological Society’s winter weather conference at OMSI, where a bunch of experts read tea leaves and consult genies in order to provide a long-range forecast for this winter. If you want my forecast, I can tell you that it’s El Nino, which means that anything at all can happen. As you’ve noticed we’re already following the predicted El Nino trend of warm and dry (NOT – just wait until this afternoon, when we’ll blow this month’s average rainfall out of the water, so to speak). The Hood River Saddle Club has a rummage sale on Saturday to raise money for the new equestrian/hiker only trail they are building. Finally, the Hood River Running Club has a wedding-themed fun run in Post on Saturday at 8:30, starting from Family Man. And then Saturday afternoon is a costume-karaoke fundraiser at Dirty Fingers, raising money for the new Seven Streams descending trail, the Kleeway.
Have an awesome day today!