Let it snow!

Do we really like this kind of rain better than the white stuff?
Do we really like this kind of rain better than the white stuff?

I have my complaints about how the city and county handled snow, but some snow whiners have an attitude that suggests, as one Seattle sage said to me, that nature "has no right to snow" at all.

Prayers for no snow and warmer days have been answered with massive flooding. Thanks people. I braved the elements last night and I can tell you that I'd rather have gently falling flakes than the kind of wind-driven drenching I received downtown last night. It was such a pleasure huddling with the poor souls on Pike Street at 9 pm while waiting for the bus. (Note to Metro: Your bus "shelters" don't shelter!)

Okay, rain is rain and I have no problem with it. But here's an interesting thing: If last night's rain had translated into snow, we all would have been screwed. I emailed weather expert Cliff Mass to find out what it would have been like. Mass says of course much of the moisture is generated because the air is warm, but hypothetically if you use the "10 to 1 ration between snow and precipitable water (rain)" and we could magically turn rainfall into the white stuff, we would have had 100+ inches of new snow in the mountains, and 50+ inches in the wetter lowlands. With wind, that sounds like the blizzard of '09.

So, we're lucky nature went easy on us on that score, at least those of us who don't live in a flood zone. But for trudging through the elements, I'll take one of those holiday snow days over this any time.


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About the Authors & Contributors

Knute Berger

Knute Berger

Knute “Mossback” Berger is Crosscut's Editor-at-Large.