Wednesday, January 28, 2009

It's a Chinook

One of the unusual phenomena about living in this part of the country is our Chinooks. This is something that the rest of the world just hasn't experienced, and they have no concept of what it feels like.

Every winter, we (seasoned citizens) look forward to these infrequent events. It can simply be described as "relief". Winter seems to drag on and on here and any break in the constant cold and snow is so very welcome.

On Tuesday this week, it was -22C when I left for work. By evening, when I went to bed, it was -8C. And the next morning, it was 0, going up only to +4 in the afternoon. It wasn't quite the extremes some of our Chinooks have brought us, but it will do. We won't quibble!!

A Chinook happens when the winds come over the mountains from the west. As they come down the slopes, they pick up a lot of speed, and get quite hot. Quite suddenly, the temperatures will zoom up accompanied by a lot of wind. The snow seems to dry up so fast -- there is no melting -- but we will take this respite in any form it comes.

Some people have intense migraine headaches a day or so before it arrives. Most of us find the fluctuations in temperatures are a little hard on the body, and some of us suffer from a few colds at these times. But that is a small price to have a break in winter! When we see that beautiful Chinook Arch, we just can't help but smile. There is a noticeable bounce in everyone's step.

It only lasts a day or two, and then we return back into the deep freeze. Ah, well, it was nice while it lasted! There'll be another one soon enough.


Alwen said...

It got up to 0 C (32 F) here today and we had sunshine. Blue sky, looka that!

knitguyla said...

I thought I learned every Winter-related weather word when I lived in Buffalo. This one is new. Hope you enjoyed it!