Friday, September 11, 2020

the blizzard of 77


  1. In 1977, I took a trip out to Colorado from New York by Gray Hound bus. four days out. Four days back. It was hell, but I did it. I remember we had our route go through Buffalo, N.Y. The snow was so high along the streets where the plowed, you couldn't see the side street coming into the main drag until you were passing it. That's scary. This is what a true Nor'easter looks like. Bad stuff.

  2. Lived through that one in North Dakota. I was all of 17. The power was out for weeks because we'd had freezing rain before the big blow. We had to milk cows without electricity for about a week until a neighbor loaned us a PTO driven generator so we could run the milking machines. Most of our cars had snow blown up into the engine compartments so that when you opened the hood all you saw was white-and maybe the top of the air cleaner. The wind blew the snow so hard that it would seep in through windows if you didn't have good weather stripping. The snow wasn't the worst of it, after the blizzard the temp dropped to 20 below and stayed their for a month. At that temp salt, urea, etc. don't work on road ice, so they were using cinders from the coal fired electric plant and in one case after numerous accidents at an intersection a contractor pulled out a pavement milling machine to see if they could grind the ice off of the road.

    1. Al, do you know you've just written the synopsis of a movie? A docudrama? You're something else, often with the funniest punchline, identification of some obscure vehicle, but this? You've either summed up a drama, or a post apocalyptic surviving the 3rd world war when the rest of the country is knocked out by small nukes in the major cities, and both coasts invaded by the Chinese, but no one is going to conquer the vast middle of the country, and by the time they've secured the coasts, it's the winter and they figure they can starve out the guerrilla fighters in the rest of the country, aka, the movie Red Dawn.
      Or, a hallmark christmas movie. (see, you're much better at punchlines, mine are doa)
      but the pavement milling? That's a stroke of genius!
      I lived through a couple winters of 20 - 30 below for a month or more, as the lake effect of Lake Superior, and it's ability to pull down artic cold was something else. I saw -60 one morning at 6 am while waiting for the bus, and the wind chill was another 30 or 40 degrees colder. Lots of people were reminded that wet hair is a bad idea on the way to work and school

    2. Ha, never thought of that. I'll call it 'Why I'm FROM North Dakota."