Friday, April 24, 2009

Heikki's Rage

You might have heard -- we had some crazy weather up here during this past week. After a week or two of good old fashioned warm weather, most of our snow and ice were gone, and things were looking up. Well, Heikki Lunta must have thought we were getting our hopes up a little too much, and he decided to drop a few feet of snow on us. Yes, feet. Painesdale got two of them.

Inspired by this, I have developed a partial classification of Keweenaw seasons. Beginning in January, we have:
  1. Winter: you know what this is. A joyous time of snowshoeing, cool crisp nights, and enjoying the lone snow-shoveler exercise plan.
  2. Fake thaw: About 1 week in late February. Just late enough to fake you out, give you hope that winter may actually be over, and topple snow statues. A cruel joke.
  3. Winter's revenge: The return of winter after the fake thaw. Its purpose is to crush your spirit and remind you that winter is not even close to over.
  4. Thaw: This is the real deal: the end of the main part of winter. Its main characteristic is the massive melt-off of snow and ice -- filling streams and making waterfalls appear out of nowhere. Note that nothing is growing yet, and there are usually snow and ice left on the ground.

  5. Heikki's Rage: Winter's last hurrah, when Heikki Lunta throws everything he has left in one final storm. This almost always happens in the form of a blizzard or heavy, wet snowfall late in April or early in May.

  6. Spring: About one week in which flowers and all kinds of plants finally poke their heads through the ground. Almost immediately becomes...
  7. Summer: About 3 weeks months of varying degrees of heat and dryness.
  8. Fall: One cool month at the end of summer. Pleasant.
  9. Indian Summer: or, Summer's Revenge: reminding you that heat is still your enemy. This is about a week of pure hell in early October, just after the new students have started to think "well this isn't bad at all!"
  10. Autumn: When the leaves turn, and everything is beautiful, cool, and earthy for a while. It lasts all too little time.
  11. The Blahs: That in-between time when all of the leaves are down (or brown), and mother nature is trying to snow, but it just comes out as rain. Neither autumn nor winter, this is the least interesting season of the year. But eventually, we give in, and come right back to...

  12. Winter (again).

We just finished Heikki's Rage, and are quickly moving in to true Spring. The 10 inches of snow -- 21 in Painesdale -- has almost entirely melted, and it was above 60 today, just a day later! We had a couple days of very difficult driving... it seems like the snow plows were all put away for the season! But I can see buds on the trees and crocuses popping back up out of the earth, so I have no doubt that the real spring will be here soon.


Anonymous said...

Great reading, Dave! The pictures are fun to see, too. Let's hope there isn't another Heikki surprise down the road! My fingers are crossed. JC

Summer said...


(Though I can't decide what's worse. Heikki Lunta's Revenge, or Construction Merge Arrows of Doom.)