Wed 18 Feb 2009
Having just spent a three-day weekend in Los Angeles, I returned home to discover I’d missed out on quite a storm in West Marin while I was gone.
On the upside, water districts and ranchers got up to eight inches of badly needed rain over the weekend. Nicasio Reservoir has come up dramatically, as have the flowers around my cabin. Seemingly out of nowhere, daffodils are starting to bloom everywhere.
On the downside, high winds worked mischief early Sunday. At the Point Reyes lighthouse, a gust was clocked at 66 mph at 1:22 a.m. That’s the wind speed of a violent storm on the Beaufort Scale and just 7 mph short of a hurricane-force gust. At 4:01 a.m., a 37 mph gust (gale force on the Beaufort Scale) was clocked in Point Reyes Station. At my cabin, the winds tore grommets out of the tarpaulin over my woodpile, shredded the tarp in places, and allowed some of my kindling to get wet.
Worse yet, a terra cotta pot more than two feet high and holding a palm tree was blown over and busted on my deck. The last time wind busted a big pot at my cabin was just over two years ago, and it wasn’t this big. Finding a replacement large enough to hold the root ball required a trip over the hill Wednesday and a lot of driving around. After extensive searching, I was able to find exactly one that was big enough.
In contrast to nature’s fury…. Just before I flew off to LA, I happened to look out my kitchen window and see a young buck sleeping unusually soundly for a deer out in the open. I guess it felt secure on this hill where there are neither hunters nor loose dogs. The only large predators around my cabin are bobcats, which I’ve seen three or four times, and coyotes, which I often hear at night but have seen only once.