The temperature all day has been sitting around -44 all day, the good news is there hasn't been any wind, so the actual feel outside isn't that bad BUT there have been some interesting effects of that type of cold we never saw in our previous travels.
First, everywhere else we have been has been Tundra, which is a desert climate with very little humidity, however this location is in the meteorological shadow of the Rockies meaning it has a very high humidity relatively. The practical effect of this fact is when it gets this cold the community sits in a constant ice fog and with no wind moving things around it hangs over the town like a veil. This fog also keeps most of the smoke from the local wood stoves from rising and leaving town, as well as the smoke from the diesel generators at the hydro plant. On the plus side 95% of the cars and snow machine's in town wouldn't start today so their impact was minimal. The smog factor in town today was high.
Second, this cold weather disabling machine affects all machinery today. Meaning the water, trash and sewer trucks all failed to operate today as their engine's wouldn't turn over. Effects are obvious.
Third, due to the fog hanging over town, Internet and satellite services were spotty at best, so no TV and limited Internet.
Fourth, School was optional today meaning it was open but attendance wasn't taken so many people stayed home to look after their kids.
Such is life above the circle.
However, it did keep reminding me throughout the day of the Black fog of London in '52, when 12,000 people died as a stagnant fog hung over London for days trapping the cities pollutants tight to the living surface's of the streets. Guess we can't blame that one on global warming, but if it happened today, guess who would get the blame. Luckily, our is predicted to move on around noon tomorrow.
Yesterday, the cold had a very negative affect in town, a local elder was riding his sled back from the store and apparently something to do with the clutch had frozen up and the sled lurched and stopped suddenly causing some severe injuries to his hand including a compound fracture to his thumb, Get Well soon Peter. Everyone in town will especially miss Peter as he runs the only "restaurant" out of his house, meaning you call him and tell him what you want to eat and anywhere from 30 minutes to 5 hours later he brings it to your door. And it is a full service restaurant, onion rings, full turkeys, fresh fish (depending on the day he may have actually caught it that day), moose, caribou, if he can find it he'll cook it for you. Its also some of the best cooking I've had since I came to the north.
Tuesday, January 15, 2008