Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Mild March

At the end of December and beginning of January I was going on about how mild the start of the Winter season was, but I haven't mentioned it since.  Partly because it's kinda boring and partly because virtually the whole rest of the country has had quite a tame Winter as well.  A couple of numbers popped up concerning March that I though I would share though.

Here in Aspen we broke the record for the least amount of snowfall ever, in the history of all time for the month.  Well, all right, at least since they started keeping records in 1934.  We officially had 6.09 inches for the month - SIX of which fell on the 1st and 2nd of March.  That's 98.5 % of the total in the first two days.  In other words, it essentially hasn't snowed here in a month.  

Conversely, last year we had 37 inches of snow in March.  Big difference.  Okay here's the kicker.  I have family in the Portland, Oregon area and in chatting with them throughout March I realized how good we had it here.  The Pacific NW was pretty much the only area in the country that was having 'worse' than usual weather.  And here are the March numbers for those poor chaps ... 7.73 inches of rain!!  Yep, they had more rain than we had snow.  Granted, they broke their all time March rainfall record, but still,  my brother was considering building an Ark in order to get his kids to school.


Chilblains suck
I experienced a couple of benefits from the mild Winter here.  First was that my chilblains were virtually kept under control.  For those of you who don't know, chilblains are swelling and itching that occur on extremities when they get too cold.  I don't know exactly what the difference is between chilblains, frostbite and raynauds ... but it makes no difference to me.  The only thing that is important, is to keep my fingers and toes as warm as possible.  Simply put, this was easier to do this year.

The other benefit was to my Sprinting.  The Launching Pad where I sprint was snow free for all but about 2 sessions.  Although I can sprint with snow on the ground,  I have to be a tad bit more cautious.  In other words, I still get the benefits from sprinting whether it snows or not, but when I get solid traction on the ground I can give it Full Throttle.  Thusly, my top end performance has not only been maintained, it has actually improved because there has been no 'off' time since last Winter.  Nice.

Lastly, a benefit to come.  Because of the scant snowpack, we will be able to hike up in the mountains earlier this year.  Quite a bit earlier.  And there is nothing like a beautiful hike at high elevation.  It tends to put everything in perspective.

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