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Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Second Day of Spring.... SNOW DAY!

We awoke unexpectedly to several inches of snow that had fallen silently and stealthily overnight, and indeed was still falling.

My car was outside, and was going to need clearing before I could attempt to drive anywhere.

The trees all around were carrying a great weight of snow, so though they looked pretty the branches were sagging badly. The snow was almost vertical, and with no wind to shake the branches it was all piling on.

Pretty view down across the cul-de-sac, the trash cans left out overnight wearing caps of snow. Aaah.

Around 7:20am Beth headed off for work. Her car having been in the garage overnight needed no clearing, and the snow crunched gaily undertire.

Ugh. I cleared my car wiondows and hood and then tried to put it in the garage so I wouldn't have to clear it a second time, with the snow still falling. In fact I couldn't go forwards up the driveway slope at all until I'd cleared the snow in front of the wheels, and these skidmarks show how my front wheels were dancing around trying to get a grip. Hmmm.

Three inches at 7am had turned to four by eight, measured on our patio table, which is near enough to the house to be slightly shaded from driving snow.

Just before I measured this Beth came back home. She'd spent about 40 minutes slipping about on the roads at 20mph top speed, but with no snow cleared off even the major NW Expressway (the city owns just one snowplow), she wisely turned back as soon as she safely could. I decided to call in as well, as it was just too treacherous to risk a smash. The Manager I spoke to was still stuck at work from the overnight shift, as it was too dangerous to drive home!

Then it was time to check our trees and garden, and shake a few branches to to to ease their snow burden. As I looked out back I noticed our gazebo seemed a but shorter than usual.

Something wrong there. I put up the ladder to discover that the roof had caved in under the weight of snow. I had hoped I might brush it clear, but with the roof girders bent down like an inverted umbrella, that was going to be difficult.

Further investigation showed that the canvas roof had ripped at some of the seams and part of the roof had caved in. I shook down some snow, but the damage was done. We'll have to decide if we can repair this, or if we want to replace the Gazebo.

With the gazebo beyond help, I went round the cul-de-sac knocking snow off the trees to try to save their branches. Our neighbor Darren came out to head off to work, but he has a big 4x4 pickup and a different route, so we watched him slush off and had a chat with another neighbor before taking a turn round the block.

Too late for this tree, this big branch had broken off under the weight of snow. We heard a crack a couple of minutes before we saw this, but we think that was a different tree. Just to the bottom left of the basketball hoop you can see the light patch were the branch broke off.

On Lynbrook, our nearest bigger road, the snow was churned into tracks, but still very treacherous if taken too fast.

To prove our point, a large 4x4 pickup came past at speed and started fishtailing. We didn't get it on video, and luckily there were no other vehicles for him to hit, but he left these tracks.

This tree was split in two by the snow.

At least the children can enjoy snowdays, with most schools closed. These two had a superb snowfort going, and a wheelbarrow full of snowballs. Now all they needed was a target. Time to be elsewhere.

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