Well… actually, it’s a lot colder than it was, but who’s counting. We now have some snow at Sugar Pine Dam — about 2-3 inches. We had to come up early today to get our communications back on line, as snow and satellite uplinks don’t mix well. It’s a good thing we have a substantial 4×4 vehicle. There was a stuck pickup truck on the access road to Sugar Pine Dam… at least it was less serious than when we came upon an overturned Jeep during one of last year’s storms. I never thought we’d actually have to use the chains and the come-along winch we brought along…. this year we’ve managed to not need it (yet!!).
Once we trudged our way into the site, by 4×4 and then by foot at the end, we were able get communications back up and running, check our instruments, bring in the collected slush from overnight for offline analysis, and relay some certainty of the conditions before the G1 aircraft flew over the site (and the rest of the central Sierra), about which I’m sure Kim will have much more to say. We heard them fly over us twice today… they were squarely in the thick cloud deck, but the G1’s twin turbo-prop was clearly audible. As I write to you now, the G1 is flying over the Donner Summit and Norden (home of the Central Sierra Snow Lab… and some really great skiing).
We’ve been very excited about our preliminary looks at data, and communicating lots with those back at the aircraft HQ at McClellan Airport. All of our measurements are up and running well at SPD… let’s hope it stays that way! Stay tuned….