Monthly Archives: December 2009

Fri 18 Dec 09

I pulled into Grand Rapids last night 35 hours after I left Yakima. 35, including all gas/food stops, and the two hours of sleep I snagged at a truck stop in Nebraska. Almost up to 211,000 on the odometer after the drive. It was a bafflingly trouble-free cross-country winter road trip.

My car was covered in a thick layer of frozen rain when I took off Weds at about 9 am, but the roads were okay around Yakima. Zero precipitation the whole way other then a few snowflakes on the passes in Wyoming. The interstates were dry or lightly wet the entire way (a couple spots of compact ice in NE Oregon). The only construction I hit was a rolling slowdown in Iowa that I was through in five minutes. No Chicago slowdowns. No car trouble. Not a single wrong turn even without an atlas or gps.

I guess if I had to pick out something that went wrong, it would be that my windshield washer sprayer was frozen for the first hour or so. And the bright sun reflecting off the wet pavement in Oregon was little irritating.

Tue 15 Dec 09

Well, Yakima, like everywhere else around here got winter-blasted last night and today. 8″ of snow, or something like that, with more potentially on the way. That might be a normal Michigan December day, but not ’round these parts. The plows are none too efficient and they hit the slippery stuff with gravel instead of salt. My drive home from work was treacherous enough for my blood, so no road trip yet. I hate winter.

Mon 14 Dec 09

It looks like I’ll be holding tight for a bit. I had been thinking of scooting east on Wednesday, but I’ll have to see how the icy apocalypse plays out. Here’s the headline today on

Winter storm will pummel the Northwest

Heavy rain and snow plus fierce winds will make traveling across the Pacific Northwest quite miserable through Tuesday.

The Northwest is about to be struck by a fierce storm rolling in from the Pacific. heavy rain will fall along the coast and in the valley areas while the mountains become blitzed with heavy snow. Over the next few days 1 to 5 inches of rain are possible with the heaviest amounts falling in northwest Washington and the northern California coast.

Snowfall of 1 to 3 feet should pile up in the mountains of western Washington, western Oregon and northern California. An avalanche watch has been issued for the mountains of western Washington overnight with warming temperatures loosening the existing snow pack and new snow falling on top of it.

I’m surrounded by a ring of angry purple. (Or maybe something different if you’re looking at this picture a couple days later and it’s updated.)

Fri 11 Dec 09

I was a walking cliche as I packed up my office on Thursday, walking out with my one box of stuff and my one potted plant. I’m not the only one though. The whole office is moving from one building to another next week. So chaos and emptying cubicles all around. I’ll be working in the new office for a couple days at a temporary workstation before hitting the snowy road later in the week.

The forecast for my departure day looks pretty rough at the moment, snow, sleet, and freezing rain for WA and parts of the bordering states. East of that though, it actually looks decent. I just need to escape this pocket of bad weather and it looks like I could hammer from there. Unfortunately that pocket is about 8 hours of driving on a normal day.

I can either head northeast or southeast from here, so it seems like one of the two routes would be driveable. Or wait a day or two I guess.