First Sunrise of the New Year

My friend Tim and I thought we'd take a stab at photographing the sunrise from Kerry Park on New Years morning, since it was forecast to be clear. Despite having stayed up til 1am for NYE, we decided to go for it since we both had open mornings. We met at a park and ride and headed off to the viewpoint.

Clear skies, while beautiful, especially in the winter in Seattle, having some clouds is always nice, especially for a sunrise to reflect upon. There were a few low clouds over the Cascades to the east, but not enough.


My Social Networks

I've been integrating more with Twitter lately and I realized that there are several layers of self-censorship (self-control?) depending on which social medium I use. Currently, there are 5 or 6 major components to all the social networks that I currently use, in no particular order:




Hoar Frost Columns, beautiful sunrise

This morning we had our second lowest temperature of the year, bottoming out at 19F. I went out with my iphone and handy macro lens to snap a few pictures of the frost leaves and found that most of the dirt under the plants was covered in hoar frost columns! 



Textbook Puget Sound Convergence Zone

Living in the Seattle area has always meant having interesting weather. One of the most unique weather features of our area is the Puget Sound Convergence Zone. Weather from the north (often "modified Artic air" or "Frazier River Valley air" or just cooler canadian air) meets warmer, southern air. The two air masses are channeled between the Olympic range to the west and the Cascade range to the east and when these two air masses meet, it usually happens in an area just north of Seattle and just south of Everett, or often generalized as the "Snohomish/King County Line". What a perfect location for a weather buff like myself to live! Here is a very simpified explanation of what usually goes on to create a PSCZ:




December visitors

Two new visitors this week:

Chestnut-backed Chickadee (blurry):


I had to rely on the fine folks at the Flickr group Field Guide: Birds of the World group to identify the Pacific Coast Bushtit that I spotted above my feeder on December 2:


My own mystery object

[Solved: it was a reflection of a light source inside the house, filtered through the flats of the blinds.]

One of the RSS feeds I follow is Latest Worldwide Meteor/Meteorite News blog which mentioned an observation from Tacoma of a North-South meteor sighting around 6pm on December 3. I figured this might be something my WeatherCam might have captured, as the time fit within the capture period of my daylight camera. Though the odds were slim, as my camera only captures a frame every 20 seconds.

While there is a faint contrail (aligned with north-to-south), there was no brilliant of obvious sign of a meteor streak, unfortunately. While some bolides are known for leaving a lingering trail, the contrail that visible falls within the standard YVR (Vancouver) approach, and lasted much too long to be a bolide contrail (which tend to disappate rather quickly). The contrail starts at around 5:45pm and passes overhead and out of view at 6:02pm.

However, while I'm watching my video, I notice a bright object appear, then disappear. I first thought this might be a lens flare from the lamp in front of my house, but it was on at full illumination before and after the object appears and disappears.



Snow Birds

Our dose of snow hasn't stopped our local avian denizens from foraging. They succeeded in finding the sunflower seeds and cracked corn under the snow.





SnOMG 2010

Its not surprise that Seattle goes to absolute crap in the snow. The combination of snow, a snow that melts, then a deep freeze (thank you Canada) turns our hills, overpasses and interstate freeways into absolute hell zones. A friend of ours had a 12 HOUR COMMUTE. He got home at 4am. Rear-drive articulated buses don't do well on ice.

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Missile Theorists: Where's your proof?

After a 24 hours, it became widely evident to most news outlets that the "mystery missile" of November 8, 2010 was caused by an airplane contrail. However, there was always a bit of vagueness as to what flight or what kind of airplane caused the contrail. The Pentagon didn't reveal anything other than the fact that it WAS a contrail of some sort, and the FAA never said anything at all other than it was a normal event.


In retrospect, the week in review

This week, the week of the "mystery missile" non-event in California, turned out in a way that I could never have imagined. What started out as mild curiousity turned in to a desire to put to rest a "mystery" that was so obviously unmysterious to me.


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