Micro-news for CT 4601, Altadena, CA

Dodging the Station Fire

posted by Jeremiah 9/06/2009 06:04:00 PM

Our family's two-week summer vacation started the weekend before the Station Fire. We came home for two nights (Thursday 8/27 and Friday 8/28) before it was seriously threatening our neighborhood in northeast Altadena. The breeze delivered two days of clear skies and two nights of choking smoke.

Thank goodness the wind never presented the seasonal Santa Ana pattern that can happen at this time of year, with the characteristic hot gusting winds out of the north that fanned the local fires of 1993. The Station Fire has only been fanned by the gentle Foothills breathing rhythm that residents rely on to draw the day's hot air out to sea every night. The Stonehill anemometer chronicles this pattern of gentle south breeze all day and gentle north breeze all night. A look at the current 5-day readings illustrates the breath-like regularity of this pattern.



With our windows closed all night, we contemplated our vacation plans and decided that they were in some ways a blessing. So we voluntarily evacuated to escape the smoke and enjoy the second half of our vacation on Saturday 8/29, and monitored the email lists, web cams and blogs from afar all week. The steady flow of information made it possible for us to enjoy our vacation with one eye on how things were progressing online. At one point early in the week, we contemplated flying me back home to help defend the neighborhood should it come to that, but decided against it. Amidst the bounty of near-real-time information, these photos were among some of the most reassuring to me personally. They were emailed by Dan Gollnick, showing professional Hot Shot crews fortifying the perimeter defenses along the Altadena Crest Trail.









After having seen literally dozens of ominous photos like the brief selection posted below, the photos of the hotshot crews fortifying our defenses was a welcome sight.


Station Fire flaring up above JPL on 8/28/09 at about 8pm
Photo by Dan Finnerty


Station Fire as seen from the top of Lake on 8/29/09 at about 6am
Photo by Bill Westphal


DC-10 water bomber on 8/29/09 at about 5:30pm
Photo by Bill Westphal


P-3C Orion water bomber over Mount Wilson Observatory on 8/30/09 at about 6:00pm
Photo by Greg Garner


Martin Mars water bomber over Mount Wilson Observatory on 9/1/09 at about 4:00pm
Photo by Greg Garner


Martin Mars water bomber flying over on 9/1/09 at about 4:00pm
Photo by Greg Garner

In the local lore about the 1993 Santa-Ana-whipped blazes that destroyed many homes in our neighborhood, one of the biggest aspects of the stories is the near complete lack of professional support in the defense. Seeing these pictures, I imagined that the Gollnicks, who are the beachhead of Stonehill, must have found some level of satisfaction seeing professionals digging literally miles of "scratch lines" with 1.5 inch feeder hose laid the entire length.



We returned from vacation late last night. I took a hike this morning along part of the "scratch-line" that the Hot Shots had built. Not to over-dramatize things, but I couldn't help looking at the coils of 1 inch hose as unmanned foxholes in hastily-build fortifications somewhere in the Ardennes, facing an anticipated German onslaught, which by some stroke of fate passed over and raged to the east. A staged Forest Service bulldozer at the ready and sky cranes ferrying supplies from the rear to the eastern front filled out the sense of walking a fortification prepared for a battle that never came.

Living in a land without war or knights-of-old, wild-land hot shots are the knights-of-new, defending our kingdom against the flames of hell.


A "knight-of-new" Grayback Forestry Hot Shots of Grants Pass, OR on 9/4/09
SGVN/Staff photo by Eric Reed


For posterity, here is a list of the best wildfire links collected during the week:
Non-government sites:
  • Mashup map of MODIS satellite thermal data and the GeoMAC perimeter data
  • Industry-watch blog
  • Time-Life-quality photos of the Station Fire
National wildfire aggregate information:

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KCAALTAD1 Reporting

posted by Jeremiah 7/11/2009 11:31:00 AM

Bill Westphal (Wunderground call sign, KCAALTAD1) sent me his precipitation stats going back to 03-04.


Season PacRad KCAALTAD1 SHN
1999-2000 19.76" -- --
2000-2001 21.22" -- --
2001-2002 8.27" -- --
2002-2003 24.47" -- --
2003-2004 15.47" 14.72" --
2004-2005 62.56" 56.66" 61.61"
2005-2006 24.06" 22.37" 23.35"
2006-2007 6.81" 6.52 " 6.15"
2007-2008 26.04" 24.66" 23.64"
2008-2009 16.34" 15.77" 15.09"
--------------------------------------
(04+) Avg 27.16" 25.20" 25.97"


Bill calculated averages from all the data which I thought was a really interesting; I included averages from the 04-05 season to the present.

I added lines from both Stonehill stations to Bill's station. According to Google Maps, Bill is at 1640' and is approximately 1.25 miles WNW of here.

That puts him at the exact same elevation as PacRad, but he's on slightly flatter terrain (no canyon walls directly adjacent to him). I speculate that the shape of the terrain more than the elevation is causing Dan to average almost 2" more than Bill and me about 3/4" more than Bill.


View Stonehill Weather Stations in a larger map

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At 8/24/2009 4:36 PM, Blogger suvro said...

How do you get elevation information from Google Maps for a particular spot?

 
At 8/24/2009 6:15 PM, Blogger Jeremiah said...

You just have to read the contour lines carefully. It's not precise.

 

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Rain wrap-up 2009

posted by Jeremiah 7/01/2009 12:44:00 PM

The rain season of July 1, 2008 to June 30, 2009 ended with 15.09 inches recorded on the Stonehill News weather station. I also have made a habit of reporting what my neighbor at the top of Stonehill has recorded, going back to 1999. Here are the available seasonal totals:

Season PacRad SHN Difference
1999-2000 19.76" -- --
2000-2001 21.22" -- --
2001-2002 8.27" -- --
2002-2003 24.47" -- --
2003-2004 15.47" -- --
2004-2005 62.56" 61.61" 2.6%
2005-2006 24.06" 23.35" 3.0%
2006-2007 6.81" 6.15" 9.7%
2007-2008 26.04" 23.64" 9.3%
2008-2009 16.34" 15.09" 7.7%


PacRad consistently logs a bit more rainfall, collecting 750 feet due North and 100 feet higher elevation. We assume this is due to micro climatic differences, not calibration or placement problems. The fact that the percent difference is not consistent year over year supports this assumption.


View Stonehill Weather Stations in a larger map

Here are the previous wrap-up posts:
Rain wrap-up 2008
Rain wrap-up 2007
Rain wrap-up 2006

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More June Rain

posted by Jeremiah 6/20/2009 09:01:00 PM

For the third time this month we recorded June rain. 2mm today puts us at 15.08" for the season. The wind pattern was very unusual too.



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More June Rain Registered on the Gauge

posted by Jeremiah 6/13/2009 01:06:00 PM

The odd cloudy weather has persisted and today and yesterday the light drizzle brought our annual rainfall total up another 4mm (.16") for a nice even 15" this year.


Chart of June's annual precipitation to date as of 6/13/2009

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June Rain Registered on the Gauge

posted by Jeremiah 6/05/2009 01:01:00 PM

Despite the facts that we've had low rainfall overall, and that it's almost the end of the rain season, today's unseasonable sprinkles actually ticked the rain gauge up another millimeter (.04")


Chart of June's annual precipitation to date

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Rain season begins

posted by Jeremiah 9/29/2008 11:35:00 AM

Last night around midnight, I noticed an unexpected spattering of rain drops. It was not enough to register as rain on the gauge, but it would certainly have made drivers switch on their wipers.

This morning, we were greeted with amazing rainbow weather. I took this photo (click to see full size) and video (below) before leaving to drop off the kids. I wish I had taken my camera along, because there were plenty more gorgeous rainbow vistas along the way. By 8:30 enough rain had fallen to moisten the sage, and there was that wonderful fresh desert rain smell in the air.



We got a decent shower, in and out, over the course of the morning. So far we have accumulated the first 1mm (.o4") of the season. Listen carefully for the first inklings of distant thunder in the beginning of the video below (taken around 7:15am). At a bit past noon, we had a great peal of thunder, rolling along the hills from west to east, and lasting for much longer than normal; perhaps 10 seconds or longer.



By now the sun has come back out, and it feels like LA summer again.

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At 9/29/2008 1:45 PM, Blogger Stéphane Kardos said...

This is a beautiful photo! I noticed all the clouds last night as I was painting outside, it's so rare to see clouds here in California, I miss that from Europe. Anyway, the reflection of the sunset and the city lights in the clouds around 7pm is mind blowing.

 

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Rain wrap-up 2008

posted by Jeremiah 7/04/2008 11:24:00 AM

The rain season of July 1, 2007 to June 30, 2008 ended with 23.64 inches recorded on the Stonehill News weather station. This is the fourth complete year that I have been accurately logging precipitation. As mentioned last year, my neighbor at the top of Stonehill has been keeping records since 1999. I haven't compared notes with him yet this year; I'll update his column once we do. Here are the available seasonal totals from both stations:

Season PacRad SHN
1999-2000 19.76" --
2000-2001 21.22" --
2001-2002 8.27" --
2002-2003 24.47" --
2003-2004 15.47" --
2004-2005 62.56" 61.61"
2005-2006 24.06" 23.35"
2006-2007 6.81" 6.15"
2007-2008 26.04" 23.64"


Here are the previous wrap-up posts:
Rain wrap-up 2007
Rain wrap-up 2006

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Re-greening of burn area at top of Lake

posted by Jeremiah 3/24/2008 02:46:00 PM

Local photo blogger, Petrea Burchard captured a nice comparison of the burn area at the top of Lake, just after it burned and after a winter of rain:

http://pasadenadailyphoto.blogspot.com/2008/03/naked.html

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At 3/24/2008 6:57 PM, Blogger Petrea said...

Hi Jeremiah,
Thanks for mentioning my blog! Just to clarify: I don't have any photos taken right after the fire.

The first photo I posted was taken in February, 2008, and the second only a month later (making the growth spurt seem even more prolific). The fire occurred in August, 2007.

I've bookmarked you. Thanks again.

 
At 4/04/2008 11:45 AM, Anonymous AP said...

Miss you man.

- AP
www.proctorformayor.com

 

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What the hail?!

posted by Jeremiah 3/16/2008 06:03:00 PM

A brief hail "storm" hit Altadena, CA on Saturday, March 15th, 2008.



This little March event was NOTHING compared to the October 17, 2005 hail storm we had. Here are the two posts with links to video of that one.

http://blog.stonehillnews.com/2005/10/hail-stones.htm

http://blog.stonehillnews.com/2005/10/hail-all-hail.htm

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At 3/17/2008 1:52 PM, Blogger Stef said...

and no power at all today! scary night last night, was the first strong storm for us.

 

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Wind-powered Blackout

posted by Jeremiah 1/17/2008 09:07:00 AM



As far as I know, we still have no power this morning (I'm in a Starbucks). According to Steve Gerow, the Edison message from last night estimated power being restored by noon today. My rough estimate from a walk last night is that the blackout area was all of Loma Alta east of Sunny Oaks and all the side streets off Loma Alta along the same stretch. Zane Gray and Rubio Crest were lit up as if nothing happened. I didn't walk around the bend towards Noyes, so I don't know how far east it really stretched. A few of us saw a truck driving around last night with a spot light, presumably looking for downed lines. My weather station computer stayed on battery power until about midnight. The image above is the last one it uploaded before the network went down.

[10am Update: Got back to Stonehill and found power had come back at about 8am. Updated wind gust chart above shows additional weather station logging all the way through the windstorm, and then a gap until it came back to life when the power was restored this morning.]

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Yesterday's high over 109 °F

posted by Jeremiah 9/03/2007 10:21:00 AM

Yesterday the Stonehill News weather station recorded a high of 108.1 °F but we lost power and Internet during the hottest part of the day. The mercury thermometer topped out between 109 °F and 110 °F (approximately 109.5 °F, but I don't want to state it too precisely as the mercury thermometer has lower resolution than the digital one).

IDLocationHigh
KCAALTAD1Top Of Lake Ave108.3 °F
KCAALTAD2Stonehill Dr108.1 °F
KCAALTAD3N. Mount Curve104.1 °F
KCAALTAD7Zane Grey104.4 °F

The other three Altadena weather stations all seemed to have stayed online through the day yesterday. Above are yesterday's local highs as recorded on WUG.

Last year, July 22 is the day (not) to beat with a high of 112.5 °F recorded at Stonehill News.

It seems that we may have the dubious distinction of being the hottest place in Altadena =)

I considered the possibility that my temperature gauge was out of calibration, but it generally agrees with the mercury one. I guess it's possible they're both reading high, but not likely. They are both positioned in the shade on the north side of the garage, and never see direct sun. Assuming that the thermometers are reading correctly, I assume that there is some micro climate effect having to do with the orientation of the Gooseberry Canyon (watershed)

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Summer Rain

posted by Jeremiah 7/23/2007 10:20:00 AM

What month is this again?!



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At 7/23/2007 11:57 AM, Anonymous Aaron Proctor said...

Damn, I'm missing that unusual summer rain in Pasadena/Altadena. We get plenty of summer rain here in St. Louis but it's disgusting.

I wish I could come back like...tomorrow. I hate this place and everything about it.

 

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Weather

posted by Jeremiah 7/08/2007 02:55:00 PM

The graphs and data on this page are updated every five minutes.
The raw data is also submitted to Weather Underground every five minutes.



Running 5-day Temperature:





Running 5-day Pressure:





Running 5-day Rain:





Running 1-day Wind Speed and Gusts:





Running 5-day Wind Direction, Speed and Gusts:









See photos of the weather station components.
Weather Station

The hardware is the discontinued WM918 kit from Oregon Scientific. These are the Tech Specs.

The software is Virtual Weather Station from Ambient Weather



Anyone may link to our weather images. A fresh version of each one is automatically uploaded every 5 minutes (assuming everything is working right, which is most of the time). If you use an image on a public site, I'd be grateful for a link-back.

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Rain wrap-up 2007

posted by Jeremiah 7/07/2007 06:34:00 PM

The rain season of July 1, 2006 to June 30, 2007 ended with 6.15 inches recorded on the Stonehill News weather station. This is the third complete year that I have been accurately logging precipitation, but my neighbor at the top of Stonehill has been keeping records since 1999. Here are the available seasonal totals from both stations:

Season PacRad SHN
1999-2000 19.76" --
2000-2001 21.22" --
2001-2002 8.27" --
2002-2003 24.47" --
2003-2004 15.47" --
2004-2005 62.56" 61.61"
2005-2006 24.06" 23.35"
2006-2007 6.81" 6.15"

I find it interesting that he consistently logs a small percentage higher rainfall. The PacRad rain guage is 750 feet due North and 100 feet greater elevation. (see map)

Here is last year's wrap-up post:
Rain wrap-up 2006

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42 mph gusts over the weekend

posted by Jeremiah 5/08/2007 12:53:00 AM


Saturday night/Sunday morning's overnight gusts put last year's unseasonable June gusts to shame. Last night gusts dropped from a top speed of 42 mph to 25 mph. So far tonight has been quiet and normal, but there's still time some bluster before morning.

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Rain wrap-up

posted by Jeremiah 8/27/2006 01:50:00 PM

The rain season of July 1, 2005 to June 30, 2006 ended with 23.31 inches recorded on the Stonehill News weather station. Unfortunately, I didn't get around to resetting the total on the weather station until today, and we got a millimeter (.04") of rain on Aug 4. So my seasonal reading is off by a millimeter… oh well, 23.35" it is then. This is only the second complete year that I have been accurately logging precipitation, but my neighbor at the top of Stonehill has been keeping records since 1999. Here are the seasonal totals from both stations:

Season Theirs Ours
1999-2000 19.76" --
2000-2001 21.22" --
2001-2002 8.27" --
2002-2003 24.47" --
2003-2004 15.47" --
2004-2005 62.56" 61.61"
2005-2006 24.06" 23.35"

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At 9/09/2006 1:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jeremiah,

We took our daughter to Gymnastics on Foothill this Saturday, and we noticed a sign for a proposed strip club. I'm hoping that everyone can band together to sign the petition against this.

Here is the website:

http://www.nostrippers.com/petition.htm

Rose

 

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Unseasonable isolated gusting

posted by Jeremiah 6/16/2006 09:44:00 AM

This morning we were awoken by Santa Ana-like wind at about 5:40am. We had uncharacteristic gusting up to about 20mph until about 8:45. The wind was hot. I talked to some folks who live in Pasadena this morning, and they reported nothing unusual further down the hill. Other Altadena stations recorded similar gusting, although not as strong. It appears that the Weather Underground servers were down for over an hour starting about 6:30, as all three Altadena sites reporting today ( 1 2 3 ) have a data gap there.

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June 3, 2006 hits 103 °F

posted by Jeremiah 6/03/2006 08:57:00 PM

Well, it's really summer now. We just missed a high 103 up here on the hill today.

Other local stations report similar highs, but KCAALTAD3 on Mount Curve seems to either be having technical difficulties, or knows something we don't know. Also, unfortunately, KCAALTAD5 seems to have gone offline sometime after lunch, but not before they posted the highest high for the day at 103.1 °F

KCAALTAD1 102.4 °F
KCAALTAD2 102.9 °F (Stonehill News)
KCAALTAD3 _94.0 °F (?!)
KCAALTAD5 103.1 °F

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Seasonal Wind Storm

posted by Jeremiah 1/23/2006 11:08:00 AM

As you can see from this chart, we've been having one of our regular winter wind storms since about 2 pm yesterday. It really started to get going around nightfall, and then got quite intense overnight. Not too many people slept soundly in greater L.A. last night. So far our maximum gust has been recorded at 41.6 MPH. Lots of trees and branches are down, flaky power and utilities everywhere, the usual. These are the so called Santa Anas winds. Other reports indicate that we have not been getting the brunt of the Santa Anas, with other communities seeing nearly 70 MPH gusts.

Lucky me, I have not actually lost power for more than a few moments so far. The "logic" of wind driven power outages is never clear. For instance, I couldn't gas up at the local Chevron this morning and the traffic signals are down a few blocks away, but for once my utilities are mostly still up. My power has fluctuated enough to make the clocks start blinking, but all my computers, and network gear are surfing through it on the UPSs. I did lose one of my internet connections for a while, but my backup DSL is still holding.

Check out this 3.7MB video of the anemometer going nuts.

Here's another 3.7MB video of the blowing trees behind our house.

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Weather Underground

posted by Jeremiah 1/01/2006 05:41:00 PM

It looks like Altadena has become a hotbed for personal weather stations. As of today Weather Underground is displaying data from four stations in Altadena. I note that the station IDs skip a number so chances are we will see KCAALTAD4 come online soon, if they can figure out how to get hooked up.

Weather Underground Tips & Tricks:

1. Check out the new feature that allows you to view Personal Weather Stations using Google Maps.

2. Using a tabbed browser, open up each of the four stations in tabs. Carefully scroll each page down so the graphs are showing and all aligned with each other. Click from tab to tab and observe the similarities and differences in the Altadena foothills micro (nano?) climates. Note: If you have trouble with one of the pages being a tiny bit off alignment from the others, try reloading it. Some of the banner ads are shorter than normal.

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Hail all hail!

posted by Jeremiah 10/17/2005 06:15:00 PM

My buddy emailed me this video (3MB), and this video (2MB) of the hailstorm. At Stonehill News we have now heard reports of similarly large hail ranging from Old Town Pasadena, to JPL, and to Hastings Ranch. If anyone has a report farther flung than that, please let us know.

Most old-timers seem to agree that these were the largest hailstones seen in this area for as much as 60 to 90 years. One ornery, senile old-timer says no way man, he's seen hail almost the size of golf balls, big enough to dent a car. But he lives out of state now, so I guess we can give him his fish story for old times' sake.

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At 11/20/2005 10:24 AM, Anonymous doris finch said...

I just casually dropped in today, 11/20/05. Nice to have some local observations. Very Altadena. The hail/rainstorm on 10/17 was indeed quite an event. We've lived here [Crescent Dr., near upper Eaton Canyon entrance] since 1973 and it had the largest hailstones I've ever seen, but not the biggest accumulation. I was out driving and noted with some amusement a line of upright garbage pails proceeding in an orderly dignified file down Altadena Dr. I wonder if they waited quietly for retrieval at the bottom.

Have you been bothered by the bear? Those living along Pinecrest, both above and below the canyon gate have had their garbage sampled. One resident right near the gate was putting out his trash one night and intercepted a bear with his flashlight beam. Said there was more bear than beam, so he went back in to wait for morning.

 
At 11/20/2005 10:48 AM, Blogger Jeremiah said...

We haven't had a bear visit, but we have had two reports of first-hand bear sightings in the last couple years. Both were in early-morning daylight. Our friend, Chris, was on his way to work at about 6am, and saw a bear crossing Altadena drive right near the little real-estate cottage just east of Holliston. This must have been at least two years ago. Also, our neighbor Jill, while on a morning walk a year or two ago, saw one just off Loma Alta over by that big wooden debris fence (off Sky View or Glen Allen, I forget which). If anyone hears of somebody snapping a picture, please let me know, as I would love to post it here.

 
At 12/06/2005 8:16 PM, Anonymous Isaac Garcia said...

In February of this year, a bear was sighted twice behind the house on the corner of Porter and Loma Alta. A few months before then, a bear was sighted way up on Fair Oaks. I'm sure we are all talking about the same bear.

Also, just recently (about two months ago) a neighbor went jogging on the trail head at the foot of Zane Grey. On his way up the trail he felt like 'something was watching him.' He ignored it and went up the trail. About 45 mins later, when he came back down, a deer was dead in the trail....its neck snapped.

Mountain lion tracks all over the place. Neighbors have lost a few cats over the past few weeks....another sign of a mountain lion in our neighborhood.

 
At 1/02/2006 6:01 PM, Anonymous doris finch said...

Dropping by for another visit, critter talk. We startled a bear in a driveway in Kinneloa a while back, just off Brambling Lane.

Has anyone made any good pics of our coyote pack? They moved onto our property for nearly a week while we were gone. Our house sitter phtographed one just outside the window eating pyracantha berries, but hasn't figured out how to send it to me. Neighbors saw them in the street during the day and independently described them as beautiful and healthy. One was especially big, and two different people compared him to a German Shepard. Coy-dog maybe? I'd like to learn more. I've only seen one coy-dog in my considerable years here--it had something of the collie about him/her in the coloring and look, but when I got a closer look, the coyote part was really strong in coat quality, gait, face and general behavior.

This lot left two groups of four bedding spots, lots of scats and some tattered remains of what may have been a fox. Dang.

 

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Hail stones

posted by Jeremiah 10/17/2005 02:06:00 PM

Hail videoWe just had a fierce downpour with 3/8" to 5/8" dia. hailstones. It only lasted a few minutes in total and I was so stunned by the intensity, it took me a few extra moments to even think about the camera, much less to get it out. By the time I made this video (3.5MB), it had started to taper off a bit. Take a look at the pictures too

As of this minute we've had over two inches of precipitation since midnight. The season total so far is 2.87" at 1552 feet.

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Rain begins in earnest

posted by Jeremiah 10/17/2005 06:52:00 AM

Saturday night and last night we had our first real rains. We already had a third of an inch on Sept. 20, but this system has delivered five times that already. Sunday it didn't rain much during the day, but it was consistently overcast with intermittent thunder storms.

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First Rain Measured

posted by Jeremiah 9/20/2005 07:54:00 AM

The first millimeter of rain for the season was measured at 2:56AM Tuesday, September 20th, 2005.

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First Rain

posted by Jeremiah 9/20/2005 01:01:00 AM

The roofers finished up Sept 9th. Not a moment too soon. It remains to be seen if the rain we are receiving right now will amount to enough to register on the rain gauge, but it is most definitely raining here tonight. The rain guage resolution is 1mm (.04"). While the rain we have had so far tonight has not been enough to register, I am awake listening to gentle rainfall and distant thunder. There is water running off our brand new roof. I couldn't be happier.

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A Close Shave

posted by Jeremiah 8/14/2005 08:00:00 AM

We were woken up at 2:30 this morning by thunder! Our roof looked just like you see here. There was intense lightning half a mile away, but we have a huge tree above, and we decided in the heat of the moment that the tree was likely to work as a pretty effective lightning rod. Norah and I scaled the roof under surprisingly bright skies and laid spanning lumber and rolled out plastic in the middle of the night. I guess that the excellent visibility was due to the city lights reflecting off the clouds. We were finished by 3:30 am. It only sprinkled on us for less than a minute, and was so light that it didn't accumulate anywhere. Even still, I had no way of knowing we would get off that easy. As soon as I felt the first drops, the 2x6 lumber I was hauling became feather light. I had reports on Sunday and Monday from people only a few miles away who saw "significant downpours" for up to half an hour. We got off easy this time. Needless to say, we picked up the pace on finishing the roof :)

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Hip to be Square?

posted by Jeremiah 7/31/2005 10:34:00 AM

Pasadena Star News
Well maybe it was all the rain we just had that sparked the interest, but it seems that reporters have locked onto the personal weather stations in Altadena. A couple months ago, we were interviewed for an article in the Altadena Heritage Foundation newsletter, drawing attention to them, and just today we made the front page of the Pasadena Star-News under the headline "The Weather Underground". I take it as a badge of honor that the story ran side-by-side with the headline "Revenge of the nerds" featuring a picture of a hottie sporting a tiny-t emblazoned with the slogan "I [heart] Dorks" :)

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At 7/31/2005 5:04 PM, Anonymous Isaac Garcia said...

Congratulations on making the front page! When I first saw the article this morning I immediately thought about Stonehill Weather. Unfortunately, I didn't have time to read the article...if it wasn't for this blog, I would have skipped right over it.

I live on Loma Alta next to Gooseberry Creek and I check the temperature and weather on this blogsite several times daily.

I, too, have always been fascinated by weather but have never been disciplined enough to set up the weather station etc. Each time I check the temperature at your weather station it fulfills a tiny bit of my childhood fantasy to be a weatherman.

 

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End of the rain year

posted by Jeremiah 7/01/2005 07:01:00 AM

In Southern California, the official rainy season ended last night at midnight. Here at Stonehill News we measured 61.61 inches for the season. This total is closely corroborated by nearby personal weather stations.

Eric Malnic, Staff Writer for the Los Angeles Times, complained yesterday, "The epic 2004-05 rain season comes to an end at midnight tonight, and downtown Los Angeles missed the all-time record by a measly 0.93 of an inch."

He goes on to note,
This rain season, which ran from July 1 to June 30, ends with 37.25 inches falling at the National Weather Service monitoring station at USC. The wettest season on record was 1883-84, when 38.18 inches fell in downtown Los Angeles.

But the rainfall was actually much greater in other cities in Southern California, especially in hillside communities.

Pasadena had 56.06 inches of rain this season, almost 10 inches more than the previous record of 46.62 in 1982-83. Burbank had 44.64 inches, compared with the old record of 39.39 in 1977-78. Canoga Park, with 41.50, squeaked past its old record of 40.19 in 1997-98.
With no long-term historical data to compare our readings too, I think we will have to conclude that the rain season of 2004-2005 is the season to beat at Stonehill News.

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