While walking around the path at the Alpine Athletic Field, I spied this blooming dandelion. As I looked around, I saw several more.

We’ve had over 67″ of snow (3 significant snowstorms) with the snow as deep as 17″ on Christmas Day. We’ve had one night of +5° and another of +6°. We’ve had strong, cold winds and almost every day has been cloudy…yet…

…this defiant little flower burst into bloom for everyone along the walking path to see.

Holland Channel 1 5 23

This pic. is the Holland Channel and Beach late this (Thu.) morning. There is a lot of ice. Most of this formed during the cold period from Dec. 17-27. Here’s a link to the Great Lakes Ice Tracker. Ice extent for the Great Lakes as a whole is at 3.5% – the same percent we had last year at this time.

Snow by fence at the Alpine Athletic Field

Here’s anther pic. from the Alpine Athletic Field. You can see that snow has accumulated on both sides of a fence. During the snow events, the wind was mostly from the west, but there was a time it was from the east-northeast. The fence slows down the wind and allows a bit more accumulation there. So, you get kind of a drift on the leeward side of the fence.

Standing water in a field south of the athletic area

Tuesday night, we had showers and thunderstorms move across the area. I had 1.3″ at my house near the athletic field and that resulted in a sizable amount of standing water in the field south of the walking path. BTW, there’s a soccer ball on the other side of the fence. I thought about retrieving it, but way too muddy for me to attempt that.

Sky looking south-southwest in Alpine Township Wednesday late afternoon

I love watching the sky. The best part is sky-watching is free. Here’s another pic. looking south form the athletic field. There are at least two layers of clouds here. Look at the different colors of the clouds. Clouds are made up of tiny droplets of water or tiny ice crystals. Direct or indirect light will bounce off the clouds. The color of a cloud can look quite different from two different angles. Here’s a nice article on the color of clouds (and the sky).

Sometimes when there are two (or more) layers of clouds, they can move in different directions and at different speeds, depending on the wind speed and direction at cloud level. Low clouds may appear to move faster than high clouds, just like a car passing close to you will appear to be moving faster than a car in the distance that is actually moving at the same speed.

ALSO: The storm in California is producing waves up to 35 feet high! The waves have split the Capitola Wharf Pier. Emergency Managers urged the public to stay away from the coast Thursday as the storm and high tide continued whipping up a monster swell. The roof of a South San Francisco gas station knocked to the ground. Here’s photos of the storm. Peak wind gusts: 63 mph Salinas, 59 mph Oakland and San Francisco (airport). As I type this (3:45 mph Thu.), there are 165,319 customers without power in California.