2016 March 20

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Albany Pine Bush
Delmar, New York

March 2016
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Questions? Need an updated map? Email me andy@andyarthur.org.

Good evening. I think today was a pretty good start for the first day of spring. I walked over 10 miles when you include the walk on the Albany County Rail Trail, Albany Pine Bush and the evening walk. Some more sun would have been nice but we are avoiding yet another snow storm, but we got some of the clouds and the air pressure has dropped down to 30 bars even. Despite the clouds, it is still 38 degrees with calm wind. It feels fairly mild outside, especially if you have a sweater on. By the time the Waxing Gibbous Moon, getting close to full, sets tomorrow morning at 4:35, it may be clear enough to see it. Although, I think most of clearing will occur shortly after sunrise. 11 hours and 45 minutes of darkness tonight.

Tomorrow the sun rises at 6:54 AM with the skies clearing out for a mostly sunny day. Seasonable weather expected with a high of 44 degrees. A little warmer, maybe 47 degrees and continued sunny weather for Tuesday. Should be a nice start to the week. Not quite summer, but it will be summer before you know it. Tomorrow marks 10 weeks until Memorial Day. The average high for Memorial Day is 73 degrees and an average low of 52. Darkness takes over on Memorial Day around 9 PM. Not too bad in the grand scheme of things. Perfect weather for enjoying the black flies.

Ankle is a bit sore after all the walking but I got to see a lot of interesting places. You see a lot more walking then driving. Holt Preserve has some nice trails and broken views of the surrounding lands. The Albany County Rail Trail was a nice hike, but I wish I had gotten down a little further to get into the gorge. That said, I think I will have plenty of time to explore the trail in the future when I am not so pressed for time. The trail certainly gets nicer as you head deeper into the gorge. We had a good turn out at the Save the Pine Bush Hike. Pictures to be uploaded over the next few days. All and all a pretty good weekend.

Got my kitchen cleaned up, went grocery shopping for week, and washed my truck. Did my wash yesterday at my folks house and got them put away. Pretty much ready for next week, took a sleeping pill, and plan to get a very good night sleep.

I’m hoping that I have Good Friday off but it’s a bit hard to say with the budget. If I have Good Friday off, I would like to go tent or lean-to camping at a local state forest. It would be a fun way to spend the last weekend of March, especially if it is quite mild. I will be on call next weekend, so I can’t get too far off the grid. Also, I need to fix the lights in my truck cap, which some of the wires have pulled lose on.

Sleep well. It’s been a good weekend and we should hopefully have a good week going forward if all goes well.

As we head into the 1 pm hour, we are right at the freezing point or maybe a degree above it. Overcast skies, with some of the clouds pushing in from the storm that is riding up the coast. Air pressure is at 30.18 bars and falling as the low pushes off. The latest models have Albany with a 20% chance of snow showers which is up a bit from earlier. We might reach 40 degrees this afternoon but don’t expect it to go beyond that with the clouds. Sunset is at 7:08 pm.

Went for about a two hour hike this morning along the Albany County Rail Trail. Hiked from my place off Elm Avenue to where the rail trail junctions Adams Place, then took the rail trail about two miles, about a quarter mile beyond Rockefeller Road, down to where the trail overlooks the Normans Kill. I would have liked to hiked down to the Normans Kill bridge, a but time wouldn’t allow that as I needed to be home by 12:30, so I could have lunch and freshen up before the Save the Pine Bush Hike. While the suburban parts of the trail are kind of boring, when you get into the Normans Kill gorge, the trail winds a bit more and it’s pretty scenic. The trail being a railroad grade, is a nice easy grade, making for good walking. Lots of yuppies and dog walkers on the trail, but it’s wide and blacktopped after the Delaware Avenue overpass. East of Adams Place, there are no at grade road crossings which makes for quick hiking and gentle grades, I my obese self, made an average of 3.2 miles per hour. My morning walk totalled a little over 6 1/2 miles, which ain’t bad. Plus I have the Save the Pine Bush Hike in one hour.

So don’t forget about the Save the Pine Bush Hike today at 2 pm. Cloudy maybe, but I’ll try to make it worth your time. Occasionally the sun peaks out. The hike is going to be at the East Blueberry Hill Trail Head, near Kiddie Academy and 13 Columbia Circle in the big sprawling office campus where years ago I worked a temporary job. Hopefully people will show up, otherwise it will be a nice solitary hike.

Good morning folks on this quite sunny but cold Sunday morning, which happens to be Palm Sunday and the first day of calendar spring. The mercury reads 24 degrees but with a northerly breeze, it feels more like a raw 16 degrees. The rest of the day will be mostly sunny with a high around 43 degrees, about 3 degrees below normal. Sunset tonight is at 7:08 pm which is a little over 1 minute later than yesterday. Seasonable warm for mid-March returns on Monday under partly sunny skies, and it gets back to above slightly average warmth for the second half of the week with more rain in the forecast.

I hope your enjoying your first day of spring. Not only is Easter next weekend, we have only six weeks remaining until May Day, when the average high is 65 degrees in Albany and darkness doesn’t prevail until nearly 8:30. Spring’s warmth will be on us shortly. Probably in a little over a month with the mild spring, Albany will start to green up pretty well.

To clear up any confusion, there are 12 hours and 12 minutes of daylight in Albany on the Vernal Equinox, aka the first day of spring. The 12 hours of daylight and darkness occurs sometime before the Vernal Equinox, due to refraction because the sun appears as a ball of light so part of it appears on the horizon before the whole sun does. Equal day and night occurred in Albany on March 17, down closer the equator it occurs either in late February or early March.

Happy Birthday to the late Fred Rogers of Mr. Rogers, the popular kids program on PBS, that I loved to watch. Will you be my neighbor, the program famously asked, as the train went through his wall to a magical community. Mr. Rogers was born today in 1928, and he passed away in 2003.

Happy Birthday also to the Grand Old Party, aka the Republican Party which was born today in 1854, providing a check on the once pro-slavery Democratic Party after the Whig Party stopped existing. With Donald Trump as their presumptive nominee for president and increased division in the GOP, it will be interesting to see how much of a future the party has.