2018 January 04

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Beebe Hill State Forest
Delmar, NY
Delmar, New York
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Map: Punkeyville State Forest
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Winter

January 2018
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Questions? Need an updated map? Email me andy@andyarthur.org.

Good evening! Cloudy and 15 degrees in Delmar, NY. Breezy, 22 mph breeze from the northwest with gusts up to 38 mph. The current wind chill is -3. Cold and it will only get colder as the night progresses. I’m glad I don’t have to go anywhere until tomorrow morning, and when I head out tomorrow, it will be based on the real-time bus information and with a face mask on. Tomorrow will be like North Dakota or Alaska. 

Tonight will have a chance of snow before 1am, then a slight chance of snow showers after 1am. Patchy blowing snow. Mostly cloudy, with a low of 3 degrees at 6am. 12 degrees below normal. Maximum wind chill around -16 at 6am; Blustery, with a northwest wind 17 to 22 mph, with gusts as high as 38 mph. Chance of precipitation is 40%. Total nighttime snow accumulation of 1 to 2 inches possible. In 2017, we had mostly clear skies. It got down to 19 degrees. The record low of -24 occurred back in 1904. It will be frigid but not record breaking. 

Tonight will have a Waning Gibbous Moon with 86% illuminated. The moon will set tomorrow at 10:04 am. The Last Quarter Moon is on Sunday night with mostly cloudy skies. The Blue Moon is on Tuesday, January 30th. The sun will rise at 7:25 am with the first light at 6:53 am, which is 3 seconds earlier than yesterday. Tonight will have 14 hours and 49 minutes of darkness, a decrease of one minute and 3 seconds over last night.

Tomorrow will have patchy blowing snow. Mostly cloudy and cold, with a high of 7 degrees at 1pm. 24 degrees below normal. Maximum wind chill around -17 at 6pm; Breezy, with a west wind 16 to 21 mph, with gusts as high as 37 mph. A year ago, we had mist in the morning, remaining cloudy in the afternoon. The high last year was 29 degrees. The record high of 64 was set in 1950. 8 inches of snow fell back in 1891.

Cold winter weekend on tap. Saturday, partly sunny and cold, with a high near 2. Wind chill values as low as -30. Blustery, with a northwest wind 18 to 21 mph, with gusts as high as 34 mph. Sunday, mostly sunny, with a high near 14. Typical average high for the weekend is 31 degrees.

Today they closed down all of the Assembly and Senate offices starting at 12:30. I had some work to do, so I stayed until one. Went out and got a drink, then headed home. Roads seemed pretty bad but what do I know, I don’t drive the bus. Didn’t seem that bad upstate but I guess with everything closed downstate, I wasn’t going to get much done at any rate. Made it better for my colleagues that have long commutes. The blowing snow may have caused whiteouts later on, I don’t know. 

I finished mounting the LEDs in the fixtures and making some upgrades to thicker wire for the controller I built. They work well although I’m thinking of cutting the strips slightly shorter and resoldering so the wires fit neater in the fixature. I also have an issue to address relating to one three set of LEDs malfunctioning. 

In four weeks on February 1 the sun will be setting at 5:09 pm, which is 33 minutes and 36 seconds later then tonight. In 2017 on that day, we had snow, mist, mostly cloudy skies and temperatures between 40 and 22 degrees. Typically, you have temperatures between 32 and 15 degrees. The record high of 65 degrees was set back in 1989.

Looking ahead, Independence Day is in 5 months.

Only 140 days remain until the start of Memorial Day Weekend!

U.S. to end policy that let legal pot flourish, sources say

"Attorney General Jeff Sessions is rescinding the Obama-era policy that had paved the way for legalized marijuana to flourish in states across the country, two people with knowledge of the decision told The Associated Press. Sessions will instead let federal prosecutors where pot is legal decide how aggressively to enforce federal marijuana law, the people said. The people familiar with the plan spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss it before an announcement expected Thursday."

"The move by President Donald Trump’s attorney general likely will add to confusion about whether it’s OK to grow, buy or use marijuana in states where pot is legal, since long-standing federal law prohibits it. It comes days after pot shops opened in California, launching what is expected to become the world’s largest market for legal recreational marijuana and as polls show a solid majority of Americans believe the drug should be legal."

"While Sessions has been carrying out a Justice Department agenda that follows Trump’s top priorities on such issues as immigration and opioids, the changes to pot policy reflect his own concerns. Trump’s personal views on marijuana remain largely unknown. Sessions, who has assailed marijuana as comparable to heroin and has blamed it for spikes in violence, had been expected to ramp up enforcement. Pot advocates argue that legalizing the drug eliminates the need for a black market and would likely reduce violence, since criminals would no longer control the marijuana trade."

Good morning! Happy Thursday. Light snow and 18 degrees in Delmar, NY. There is a north-northwest breeze at 9 mph. The current wind chill is 2. 

The roads are somewhat greasy heading downtown, the bus driver is going with due caution. It seems like today’s snow is particularly slick, so be careful if you are motoring. Alas, it’s only going to get colder and snowier as the day progresses with extreme cold tomorrow through the weekend. 

Only 75 days remain until the first day of calendar spring!

Today will snow. Areas of blowing snow after 1pm. High of 23 degrees at 3pm. Eight degrees below normal. North wind 9 to 18 mph, with gusts as high as 31 mph. Chance of precipitation is 80%. Total daytime snow accumulation of 2 to 4 inches possible. A year ago, we had mist in the morning, remaining cloudy in the afternoon. The high last year was 44 degrees. The record high of 64 was set in 1950. 8.8 inches of snow fell back in 2003. I don’t expect to break that record today as the Nor’Easter is tracking the coast. 

The sun will set at 4:36 pm with dusk around 5:07 pm, which is 57 seconds later than yesterday. At sunset, look for light snow and conditions and 23 degrees. The wind chill around sunset will be 9. Breezy, 18 mph breeze from the northwest with gusts up to 31mph. Today will have 9 hours and 10 minutes of daytime, a decrease of one minute over yesterday.

Tonight will have a chance of snow before midnight, then a slight chance of snow showers between midnight and 1am. Areas of blowing snow. Cloudy, with a low of 3 degrees at 6am. 12 degrees below normal. Maximum wind chill around -16 at 6am; Blustery, with a northwest wind 16 to 21 mph, with gusts as high as 33 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%. New snow accumulation of less than one inch possible. In 2017, we had mostly clear skies. It got down to 19 degrees. The record low of -24 occurred back in 1904.

So winter is back. Not that it ever went anywhere. In recent years with the warning climate, I’ve forgotten what a real Albany winter is like. Whether or not you believe in science, I can you both based on the records and personal experiences  that in recent winters they haven’t been so cold and snowy. Whether or not you believe the Mercedes drivers doctors in their white coats, chain smoking cigarettes will likely lead to premature death. But they are so pleasurable smoke. I mean, who doesn’t like burning fossil fuels and all the cheap energy services they provide us, even if they are killing us slowly just like every drag on the cigarette. 

Lately I’ve been following more of the bushcrafting, prepper, off-grid and homesteading groups to learn more about their communities and learn more about sustainable living, away from the plastic, abstract, fake and generally unsustainable society we live in today. I guess centralized services are more efficient on a per capita basis but they are sure ugly too. 

A lot of the prepper types are definitely really southern, very suburban and conservative. Most probably live in large suburban tract housing, McManisons and the alike that are deeply tied to the grid, and urban services like garbage and sewage removal. I laugh when they are bitching about the shock of losing municipal electric and the heat provided by the electric baseboard heat or electric powered gas furnace. But how can you be a prepper if you struggle to survive a few days without electricity supplied by vulnerable power lines from a large, highly technical coal burning fossil plant? A prepper lifestyle should prioritize conservation of energy and sourcing of it from fuel sources that aren’t dependent on vulnerable wires and centralized facilities. I know I would be screwed if we lost power for a long time, although I guess I could use my propane heater temporarily. Wood and solar heating eventually though, and maybe stored on site propane for hot water and the stove. The woodstove could heat should I run out of propane. That said, I’m not worried about SHTF right away as modern society is fairly wealthy, and while it might be fracture critical in its infrastructure, we have a lot of money to rebuild and different regions of the country are unlikely to be impacted the same way by a disaster. Wasteful yes, but survivable for now, probably. 

There are 5 months until Independence Day when the sun will be setting at 8:36 pm with dusk at 9:10 pm (Daylight Savings Time). 

Map: Punkeyville State Forest

Map: Punkeyville State Forest

The 518-acre Punkeyville State Forest was purchased in 2012, making it the newest state forest in the region. It received its name through a contest in which students from Forestport Elementary School submitted potential names. Punkeyville was an early name for the area that is now Forestport. This was also the site of a commercial trout farm years ago. Some of the rearing ponds and raceways are still evident. There are no developed facilities except for the roads that cross these lands.

http://www.dec.ny.gov/lands/107771.html