Saturday, January 21, 2012

Discretionary Winter

Well, the first significant winter storm of the year has just rolled through the San Francisco Bay Area.  It meant some wind and rain for us, but it also means some much needed snow for the Sierras (the mountains along the eastern side of California).  You see, in much of California, we experience something I call "Discretionary Winter."  Don't get us wrong, we love snow and winter fun.  The thing is, you should go to it, not the other way around.  The way it works here, during this very civilized season, if we choose, we can drive a few hours into the mountains to experience as much snow and winter fun as we like.  Then, once we've had our fill, we can drive home, or maybe to the beach... very civilized.
Unfortunately, this year, there has been no snow in the mountains.  Precipitation has been down 80-90%.   In addition to robbing us of our discretionary winter experience and ruining the season for many ski resorts, it could threaten the amount of water that will be available to feed our water supply in the spring.  That is why we are particularly happy about this winter storm coming through.

Thinking about the mountains made me appreciate this gorgeous time lapse film of Yosemite even more.  Watch this movie in full screen and tell me if it doesn't impress you.


For more information on Project Yosemite and story of the making of this video, click here.