Sunday, March 23, 2014

Post March Break

I wanted to get some pictures of the lay-of-the-land around here.  We got another bit of snow, and again, the ground is covered and the temperatures are still below freezing.  I was out for a run today and made my way down to the lake.  There is ice as far, as far as the eye can see.  It is quite something.  At any rate, winter is still in full bore, but the days are getting so much longer.  More often than not there are blue skies and lots of sun.  So it isn't terrible, but just lots of snow.

We never really got up-to much during our week off from school.  There was a few trips outside of Huron County, but not really any over nighters, or prolonged stays in a particular spot.  I got off and visited a few buddies. Shelly took off and hit some jewelry making sessions in the city.  Molly and I went swimming 2 or 3 times, then watched some local hockey tournament stuff.  And altogether we went out for a few meals and some walks.  That was about it.

This past weekend some people from my work, Shelly, and I hit the lanes for a Big Brother/Big Sister bowl-a-thon fundraiser.  It was really fun.  We bowled out of the Lucknow facilities and despite a number of gutter balls, there was a couple of spares, and a strike or two too.  The cause was great.  Lots of people supported it.  They raised close to 10K dollars by the time it was all over.  I might have got a new personal best with scores of 160, and 130 for the second game.  This was the team minus Shelly, I think she was taking the picture:

 A grainy picture of Shelly's form:
So upcoming - I got a new set of tires of the motorbike.  It was awesome to see them on the doorstep when I got home from work on Friday.  I  ordered them from a place just outside of Hamilton and just shipped them to the house.  My bike is stored at Culbert's Bakery.  Apparently someone saw an orange KTM out last weekend down at the beach.  Despite the fact that my bike runs amazing in cool weather, it isn't great riding weather whatsoever.  Evidently Evan Culbert thought otherwise and took it out for a spin.  It must have been him.  There aren't many of the around.  Besides it seems like something he'd do as he is an ambitious and eager rider....  Next time he takes it out it'll be to the shop to mount the wheels.

Hockey is wrapping up.  It has been a great year and our last game is tomorrow night against an Exeter team.  I have had lots of fun playing.  Running is just starting up.  Someone asked me today how it has been going.  I guessed that I have run 12 times, maybe 15 since January.  So, ya, I am a bit behind.  I think I am going to race on Mother's Day.  Last year I ran 35 minutes and 20 seconds maybe for the 10k.  I have a bit of work to do, but I might be there....  Maybe not....

Monday, March 3, 2014


So a few of us hit the railroad tracks this weekend for a trip to Chicago.  Basically the main goal would be to get to the Outdoor Classic hockey game at Soldier Field.  Considering we had tickets, that wasn't an issue.  In fact, the majority of the trip was planned and paid for well before Christmas.  So it was long in anticipation, but well worth it.  Boy, what a great time.

It was a quick and easy trip for the most part.  We got on the Amtrack in Port Huron.  Once in Chicago we were able to walk over to the hotel.  Most of the sites to see and places of interest were also in walking distance from were we stayed.  Chicago was a great city with plenty of excitement.  It was cold though.  Very cold indeed.  But there would be an added surprise, the forecast called for 6 inches of snow that afternoon and evening.  I guess it snowed 4 inches over the course of the game.

We sat pretty far up, but surprisingly it wasn't that bad.  I could read the numbers on the players shirts easy enough, but the lettering of their last nights wasn't as clear.  The play was microphoned, and you could hear every cut-of-the-skate, shot, pass, and thump against the boards.  The game took a bit longer however as rink rats frequently had to clean the ice with shovels. 

Other than the game, there was lots of walking around and checking out the highlights of the city, plenty of pinting and pub time, and lots of interesting eats and local restaurants.  But cold.  Cold and windy.

The train is an easy enough way to get there.  It makes for a long ride home though because it leaves later in the day, but you don't have the hassle of parking a car and getting caught in traffic...  Stuff like that. 

And as for the game...  The Blackhawks beat the Penguins by a score of 5 - 1.  There was about 63,000 people at the game.  The 50/50 ticket was a split of $86,000 - no, I did not win, but did have 3 losing numbers in it.  The big screen splashed the temperature at one point and it indicated it was 15 degrees = fahrenheit (2 fehrenheit with the windchill).  I mentioned that they said it snowed 4 inches during the game.  Our tickets were high up there, the cheapest in the building, and they were $130.  But hey, it was lots of fun.   It is something I may not get to do again, though I would get back to Chicago in the summer with much warmer weather.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Family Day

So in Ontario it was a holiday today.  Family Day.  There are a few other provinces that recognize this day - so what the heck, might as well spend it with the family.  (Or just part of it.)

It was a beautiful bluebird day.  Sunny blue skies.  Cool at ten below.  Warm sun.    So I grabbed Andrew's sled and hit a few trails on ye trusty Yamaha.

All the trails are open to the public this weekend.  Andrew doesn't have a trail permit, so I was lawful to go all about if I so wished.  But not knowing my way around Kinlough Township, I decided to stick to the fields of the in-laws and the land they own.  I knew I wouldn't get lost.  I knew that if I got stuck I could leave the machine and retrieve it another time.  I just felt a bit safer.  I have next to none/zero skills on tracked winter vehicles.  I also knew there was a lot of  snow in the fields so it would be fun blasting through fresh powder.

And it really was a fun day out on the sled.  I did get stuck towards the end.  I was going down a trail and was 500 m or so from the main road.  I was heading back through Pearson's.  Anyway there were felled trees across the trail and the sled was just too heavy, and the trail to narrow to meander/weave my way past.  I put it in reverse, but just dug myself deeper in trouble.  It would be time to hand-bomb this 500 plus pound monster 180 degrees.  I wasn't too disappointed actually.  It was a nice day.  I inched it bit by bit, and wouldn't you know it but in 20 minutes or so I was turned right around.

Sitting on a few feet of snow.  The snowmobile only dug down about 6 to 8 inches I'd say.

The felled trees got worse past the first two ones you see here:

The rest of my family - they hung out in Goderich and had a few visitors.  I was only away for a few hours.  Molly and I took off for a wagon ride and found our way over to a buddy's house for an hour or so.  Shelly was just out picking away at some errands and actually got a few herbs planted indoors, to be put outdoors later in the spring.  I could really use another day off, but I shouldn't complain.  I have had a number of snow days off, and a few days of not feeling well last week.  So ya, got to get back to the grind and finis the pull till March Break.

Drove past Shelly's first car on my journey today - I took a picture mostly because you can see the layers of snow in the roof.  This is what back-country adventurist dig and look for before descending a line.  I am not sure how well it will show up in the photo, but live, you can really see the various layers of snowfall and how it compacts and presses on top of itself.

The best family members somebody could have:

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Some Redundancy

Yes, a bit of a repeat post - but the same ole same ole has been going on around here.  We had another few days off with inclement weather.  We posed for another few pictures to show and give a bit of perspective.  Keep in mind it hasn't actually snowed that much, it has just been incredibly windy.

The pictures are quite small, but you'll  get the idea:

The fluorescent yellow school sign is a few hundred metres from the school.  We stopped back over at Glen's Hill Road to take a few pictures of the snowbank there.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Today Was the Quad

Went out to work today - although it was another school bus cancellation day so that means the students weren't there....  Not all the staff were there, but there was blue bird skies and dry pavement the whole way for the most part.   County workers have definitely had their work cut out for them over the past 96 hours.  Undoubtedly there is still poor weather to come being that it is only the first of January.

So keep in mind my two friends here are standing on a 3 or 4 foot high snow bank, not the road, and the face behind them is another, or nearly another one of them - So that would be over 13 feet high easily.  This was at the corner of County Road 1 and Glen's Hill Road - on the west side of the highway.  The faces/sides have definately been machined with a significant, majorly significant snow blower to cut them back off the road.

Without any luck I have been trying to add a 15 second video I took as well...  However it doesn't seem to be working.  I am sure you get the idea though.  But as for how it towered over me:
 I am about 6 feet tall with my thicker soled winter boots on...

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Snow Days

We haven't hit a consecutive record, I believe that it is 5 days in a row, but we just hit the trip today.  The major problem on the highways is the drifting snow and getting things cleaned up from the high winds and moderate snow fall.  I guess the drifts were getting to be well over six feet high.  There are hundreds of cars that are abandoned or stuck.  All the roads in Huron County were also closed. 

But I have been keeping busy for the most part.  I have found the town's library to be a great spot to work away at a few things that need to get done.  It is close, quiet, the computers work well.  It isn't home...  Molly still goes to daycare on days like these.  It is open and staffed.  She likes going... 

Shelly has found a project inbetween the work she is getting done for school and such. 

Hockey got cancelled tonight.  There are still a few roads closed....  Lots of shovelling happening... 

Monday, January 6, 2014

Sock'd In

We are really snow'd in around here....  Each day over the last week we've got 20 cm here, 15 another day, and another couple 20 cm snowings.  It is all fine in Rossland, BC, but it does create a bit of a hassle around here.  Basically we've have 50 or 60 cm over the past few days, plus it has been fairly windy so there are drifts close to a metre in height.  Needless to say things are pretty quite.

On the weekend we got out snowmobiling.  Reg has a reliable sled that is just right for pulling a wooden toboggan around the field.  It was really quite fun.  The kind of fun that would have made me shell out two grand for such a ride myself.  However, it was just that the day was just right for that kind of activity.  Usually snowmobiling isn't as pleasurable; too cold, too windy, not enough snow, they break down quite often, and such.  That wasn't the case on the weekend.  Shelly did try to cross county ski around the field, but the snow was much too sticky and it made gliding near impossible....
The cover got blown off, and this was the result in about 24hrs...

At any rate, there was a tonne of cancellations and road closures.  Brookside was, of course, closed.  That was the third inclement weather day of this school year.  We did snag two before the seasonal break.  I did a lot of shoveling, went for a quick little run, and just poked away on some school stuff throughout the day as well.