Friday, December 11, 2009

A steamy morning at Snoqualmie Falls

Literally, I mean "steamy" outdoors, not indoors! Snoqualmie Falls is a delight when we get cold weather and what better way to enjoy it than wait out four straight days of temperatures not even coming close to getting above 32* out here and watch the ice build up around the falls. Yesterday morning I finally had to give in to the urge to revisit this frequent stop - the continuing clear sky would offer nice "warm" light back lighting the falls area after sunrise, and it was cranking on day three of morning temperatures in the single digits! This is where the steam comes from - even the cold water of the Snoqualmie River was steaming each morning this week, a sight we don't get around here. It has looked more like winter pre-freezing of rivers in Eastern Washington or North Dakota!

I pulled in to enjoy over 45 minutes of standing in what were 6* temperatures watching the show, of which I was completely alone 44 minutes of it I think. The light from the sunrise was better at adding truly dramatic feelings in my viewfinder that I had thought it could - instead of dealing with spray from the falls like so often happens when the river is quite high, I was dealing with steam! The water was steaming up a storm and that was simply one of the most cool things I've ever seen! I'd like to find the calculations that are involved comparing air temperature vs. water temperature vs. relative humidity to find out what effects what the most. By the time I left the falls at 9:30am the steam effect was far reduced from what I was seeing much of the time. Air temperature then was 13* (and not skyrocketing very quickly!). What a fascinating start to my day. Up next? Massive herds of Trumpeter Swans in the north end of the Valley where I spent 2.5 hours freezing my feet numb standing at an edge of a field with 500-700 swans right in front of me! Stay tuned - this will be a good show-and-tell coming up from me! :)

1 comment:

  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.