I was a bit (well, a lot) skeptical about whether we’d end up with a storm of the magnitude the weather folks were predicting early last week. We were to get 12-18” of snow. Uh huh … right!
In my area of south King County, we’d had a number of just wet little snow blizzards that melted about the time the flakes hit the ground. What I didn’t know, was that the worst of the storm was just laughing at me … waiting for me to go back into the house to finish my skeptical blog post.
For my area of the Auburn east hill, snow was late to arrive, but when it did, it was daggone serious. Now, remember you east coasters … we’re talking about the Seattle area here. We don’t get much in the way of snow. We may get a few inches here and there, close the schools for a day, and then melt off. There’s little snow equipment in the area, we live up/down on hills and the snow we do get is typically very very wet. None of that dry fluffy stuff that’s fun to ski … just Seattle “concrete.”
Thursday morning around 7am, the power went out. A quick look outside said that it had snowed a bit more. With accumulations around 8 inches or so after it’d melted off a bit. Bummer—I wanted SNOW!—and an adventure! At my house, situated on a small community well, septic systems, electric heat, it was going to be a cold few hours – outside was around 28 degrees or so.
But, expecting the best and dressing in layers, we were prepared! Flashlights, generator, a full fridge and pantry full of food, bottles of drinking water and a bathtub full of water for the necessary stuff. Bring it on. We were ready.
Fast forward to late Thursday … it’s raining. That’s what was predicted. It was going to rain off all of our accumulations. No problem. What the weather folks didn’t know, is that the rain was freezing. Encapsulating everything and accumulating a deadly layer of ice on top of the snow. And it just kept on accumulating. By the time the rain stopped and turn back to snow on Friday, we’d gathered about an inch of solid ice on top of our snow layer. Stuff is falling off the trees everywhere. (Nothing like laying in bed listening … creeeekkkk, screee, schuuuuuckkkkk, CRASH!) Outside, it’s a winter wonderland with ice coating everything.
But then the snow kept on coming … again! Now there was about two inches of snow on top of the ice! Yikes! I had no idea. Friday morning I decided to let the dogs out front to avoid the broken tree mess in our back yard … and immediately after stepping off the porch all four legs splayed out on both dogs. Getting purchase and standing back up was a challenge for them.
By late Friday we were able to actually make it out of our driveway and back to the world and what a mess it was. Downed trees, downed wires, cars in ditches; it was total destruction. No wonder we had no power. Lines were down on both sides of our private road, huge trees laying everywhere.
But real estate calls just kept on coming. My cell phone kept ringing with people looking for houses. So on Saturday I decided to go ahead and make a showing appointment and give it a go. Yikes, what a further mess. Now our feeder road was totally blocked off, with power line trucks guarding the road so no one could get in or out. Lots of yellow caution tape. (Yay!! Maybe they were working on restoring power!) With lots of talking, we were allowed to carefully go around all of the barriers and trees and off to my showing. Only to be stood up by the Buyers. Sigh … but it was a fun adventure!
Here’s a shot of my favorite shade tree during the ice storm … and after. What you can’t see here is the line of tree trunks that are now just sticks. There’s gonna be a lot of tree removal again this year. I’m thinking that Mother Nature decided pruning was necessary so decided to help us get a start at it. We were very very fortunate – no real damage, but sure a lot of destruction. (And I was mighty glad to take a hot shower on Sunday when the power was restored!)