1-20 & 1-21, 2010

Thursday January 21, 2010

9:30 am update-

It has been a few hours since my last visit, and the latest forecast model runs again look very different than the last one. The NAM has gone from rain all weekend to a big blanket of snow. BUY! The GFS moved a little in the right direction, but could be better.

I am off to Lakewood/Townsend by truck, and should have pictures later.

Read on..


Overnight Report-

Greetings and welcome!

Work kept me off of the trail yesterday. In fact, it will be a long night too. I will show you guys what I have been up to later in this post. I will also be out and about checking conditions later today.

The weather forecast has me cringing. The models are flopping and none of it is really good. This would be a good place to use my free spin and try again.

The GFS that gave us hope yesterday is a soaker today. It has us in light or moderate rain from Saturday morning until Sunday afternoon. About Sunday afternoon, a dry slot develops in the center of the storm, cheating us out of the snow on the cold side of the storm. It will eventually hit about Monday with snow, but by then the main energy of the storm is on the Atlantic coast of Canada. (It can only get better.)

The NAM that was dark yesterday shows a little hope. Instead of a scenario like the above, it is keeping NE WI close to the temp that would have us at the rain/snow line. That usually works out very well if you are close but on the right side.

The HPC forecast looks ugly. They have the low tracking from the Twin Cities east over Iron Mountain. Usualy we want that about Chicago to Sheboygan heading northeast. The HPC outlook would put us in the rain for the weekend.

While my guidance is stacking up heavily against my optimism, I am sticking to my guns for now and thinking that this is all a little dark. Maybe it will rain all weekend. Maybe it will be 6-9″ of snow and people chased away by the rain forecast will miss out huge on great trails, great events, and big scenery. None of that would be good.

The weekend storm is a big slow moving low that has a lot of unusual dynamics. The models frequently struggle with storms like this and they don’t seem to be handling it well at the moment. My recommendation is to sit tight. If we start having some continuity among the forecasts and it lasts a few runs, maybe I will be an easier sell.

I would not bet my weekend on it if this said 4-8″ of snow, and I am not sold on a washout either. It is just a forecast, 84 hours out, and those can change, especially in this scenario. Just sit tight and let it play out.

As you can see I am trying stacking multiple reports onto a single page. The idea is to keep comments from getting flushed every 24 hours. Most are relevant for days. At the moment I don’t like it, we will see how it goes.

Work called me away yesterday and it looks like I will be a busy guy for a while. I am pretty adamant about getting out on the sled today and maybe some time in the blue room too. I tried that all work thing in December and didn’t like it. I do really have my hands full at the moment though.

While it isn’t ready, and major revisions will be coming, I will give you guys a sneak peek at the project that I have spent so much time on (and will continue to).

It is an on-line store that sells glow in the dark exit signs and emergency pathway marking stuff. It is a revolutionary new coating that puts these products head and shoulders above the competition, and well above standards.

It is really cool stuff in that it absorbs ambient light and uses that instead of electricity. If the lights go out, the exit signs, pathway and hazard markings, and evacuation routes all have glow in the dark pathway marking guiding the way. The minimum that it stays visible is 90 minutes, some coatings go many hours, depending on the application.

It works very well, and will soon be in most hospitals, government buildings, and most public buildings and work places. In the interest of disclosure, I am invested in the store end of it.

This is one of my favorite pictures, the two hallways in the dark picture. There are no lights or windows. The best part is, this is early generation stuff. The new coating is even more amazing.

I have a lot of hours into the store, especially in December. That is where I was, and why I missed events, didn’t work on sleds, and am in general so far behind right now. Now you know the rest of the story.

Well, I am off to get back to work. The sooner I get done, the sooner I get out of here and out onto some trail conditions.

Have a good Thursday, and thank you for visiting!


Wednesday January 20th, 2010

Greetings and welcome!

I took a ride in the truck at sunset to get gas in Athelstane. I got a look at the trail crossings along C, behind the Silver Cliff Town Hall and along I. Generally I came away with the impression of March trails. There was a good base in most areas, and some snirt and sun burned spots too. A little snow would go a long way, but there is a good base. I saw that the Iron Snowshoe and the Near North clubs had both groomed in the past day.

If you are willing to put up with a little dirt and snirt, a hard packed base with some icy patches, and pick where you ride, your reward would be a lot of good trail in between the bad spots. If you are looking for paradise and a foot of fresh powder, this aint it. With the foot of powder it would be close though.

I am going to saddle up later today for a closer look, these are just my impressions between here and the gas station.

Because it was late in the day photography was difficult. I did manage to bring home a few though. These were taken at road crossings between Athelstane and Silver Cliff along Eagle River Road.

The weather outlook is getting sketchy for late week. The GFS and NAM are presenting very different ideas. The GFS is pretty friendly, keeping temps in the low 30s or slightly cooler. It shows a little rain late Saturday and snow soon after for Sunday and Sunday night. The track of the low is a little west of ideal, but not too bad.

The NAM and the TV weather guy have a little warmer scenario in mind. The NAM is showing a lot of warm air ahead of the storm, taking temps out of the freezing zone Friday and Saturday. The Saturday 6am NAM plot is showing the 0C 850MB  line about 200 miles south of Hudson Bay. In the case of the TV weather guy, he had the low tracking SW to NE over the western part of the state. That would bring mostly rain.

The NWS is a little more cautious, keeping temps in the low to mid-30s and using a rain or snow wording.

Personally I am comfortable with the GFS, and a little rain followed by a nice blanket of 3-6 or 4-8. I do have to acknowledge that based on the goofy AO based blocky pattern, the path of the Christmas storm, and our recent weather that the other scenario is plausible. Until I see more I am leaning toward the GFS view.

I want to encourage you to go back and read the comments from recent reports. A lot of times relevant comments and trail conditions reports come in and because I have already updated with a new post they get pushed down and are not as visible. I am considering doing a whole week’s worth of posts under one title to address this. For the short term I have added a Recent Comments box to the right hand column.

There are a lot of good events coming up this weekend.

January 23rd-Chute Pond Vintage Riders 2nd Annual Vintage Snowmobile Show and Ride Everbreeze to Schoolhouse and back.

Paul Bunyan Riders Sno-Fun Weekend in Lakewood January 23 & 24th

10th Annual Radar Run on Waubee Lake January23rd at the Beach Club

January 23rd-Chute Pond Club Breakfast 8:00 am, Ride, Beer Barrel at Kitty’s Grill & Bar on Chute Pond

That is about it for the overnight report. Have a good Wednesday and thank you for visiting!