Living in the desert region of Southern California we tend to forget sometimes that the rest of this country experiences a phenomenon called “weather” on a fairly regular basis. Here in our neck of the woods we basically have two seasons:
- summer, which delights us with temperatures of 100 plus degrees from the beginning of April until the end of September, the height of which is reached in July and August when temperatures of 120 degrees Fahrenheit are not unheard of. I always find it ironic when I compare running habits with runners from different parts of the country who are usually forced to run on the treadmill during winter months whereas I tend to hit the gym more often during the summer, although over the years I have gotten used to running in 100 plus degrees
- and fall, which usually does not set in until Thanksgiving when right on cue the thermometer does a double digit dip from the 90s into the 70s
We do get the occasional rainfall during the months that the rest of the country experiences as “winter” and have even had some night frost in the past. In August we also tend get monsoons that come over from Arizona and bring humidity not unlike the one Florida is known for. For someone (yours truly) who loves heat, and by love I mean LOVE!!!, the summers in this region are my favorite time of year and if it was up to me, they would go on forever. I even love the humidity that the monsoons bring and make my hair curly and my skin luminous. When you live in parched conditions every bit of moisture is welcome!
So for the most part we bathe in eternal sunshine and live under endlessly blue skies, even when the rest of our nation is digging out of five feet or more of snow. And then, then a winter storm hits us and everything comes to a screeching halt. Literally! If you followed the news this past week you probably know that I am talking about this puppy that came upon us in California:
If this looks Hurricane like to you you are not far from imagining the reality that hit us Californians. And yes, most of us do not know how to handle such a force of nature, let alone know how to drive in it… and that’s only the beginning of our troubles in the rain. Our roads turn into raging creeks, fit for white water rafting – people have been known to kayak down Mission Street in Santa Barbara -, our hillsides slide towards the ocean and the entire state threatens to erode into the Pacific.
But after a massive rain storm like the one from last week also has us waking up to the this scenery:l
The white stuff you see on the top is real snow! As seen from the desert (!!!) floor. And so yesterday morning, as we woke up to observe the image above from our kitchen window, we decided to play hookie and let Nelson experience something he has never experienced before: snow under his paws
I am honestly not quite sure what exactly it was we expected but Nelson could have cared less about the strange white substance except for the fact that it made us walk awkwardly to the point of him looking at me as if to say: “What the heck, Woman! Why are we walking in this that makes us sink to our knees if we can just walk on the road?”
Unfortunately the snow was not as powdery as it looked from our back yard and did not invite for a snow ball fight or snow angels. Next stop: Big Bear!
Today’s Running Tip: Running in snowy conditions!
Running after fresh snow has fallen can be quite treacherous and you need to be extra careful. Even if the snow seems soft and non slippery there can be ice hiding underneath. If you live in a climate where snow is a regular part of winter invest in running shoes that have a a sole appropriate for less stable road surfaces. Trail running shoes are a good option. Beware of black ice!!!