All posts by admin

BUSTED SPRINGS AGAIN

The storm of the Century seems to have passed us by. About 10″ of fresh white stuff and now the next melt begins. Tomorrow the School is closed and then all next week as its Spring Break again.

Hopefully if it melts fast enough I might be able to get some riding in next week as the weather has certainly been keeping me in check this year.

The Ides came and went and after a small shopping expedition to top up with yet more salad veggies (hard work eating like a rabbit on this diet) the afternoon was spent sorting through the ever diminishing woodpile for something that wasn’t wet from the rain or still covered in snow. Three big loads chopped and brought in. A ride was considered but still muddy and the roads have too many puddles. Should be good for Sunday onwards as temps are forecast for the 50’s !!

Saturday morning, 3/16/19, and the scales say 200.0 !  very happy about the Zero! Today Brenda wants to drive up to Telluride and see if her COPD is going to be a problem before she gives skiing another go.

Need a “check run” to see if Brenda can breathe with the COPD

Pleasant drive up  the mountain, and they sure have had a load of snow! Mountain Village and the Gondola ride into Old Town and a drift down the sunny side of Main Street.

Phase II of the ride, on the Telluride side of the slopes, from Mountain Village

Time for a late lunch and from the many bars, bistros, cafes and restaurants we pick “FLORADORA” ….. we think we have been in here before ?

……. in we go

Like the artwork

Menus arrive, and we try “their” Bloody Mary”  …. V nice and pretty spicy ….

Can’t decide ….. I like the Honey baked Brie, and the Duck Eggrolls sound pretty good too! Well we have them both and they are superb

Duck Eggrolls and a plate of the brie in the top left corner

Sunday, the melt continues and its sunny and demi warm, well about 50F, which is a nice change and after a lot of “shall I ? shalln’t I ?” I get out there and knock up 26.80 miles. Monday and Tuesday are much the same and 27.32 and 27.45 are added. Wednesday and I should be getting a new rear cluster and chain on the Roubaix but the day is too nice so after a full blown working morning on the remaining iced in Christmas decorations and lights up the pillars I take another ride as the Thursday/Friday forecasts are awful! The year’s total now stands at 130.71

Thursday morning, a very slight dusting of snow and now some light rain as I set off into town. Very windy! with a strong Easterly. Hardly a sign of any snow as I fight my way through the gusts into Cortez.

Roubaix gets all it’s new bits and an hour later I’m on my way home along with a new cable for the gear changing system and a new dose of handlebar tape. Looking exceedingly BLACK out to the West as yet another storm arrives.

New cluster and chain for no more clacking

No sooner home and ready to take over dogs as Brenda is off for a lunch trip with Carol. She departs, I take the dogs out and get peppered with hail which then turns over to snow, and heavy resort style snow at that! 30 minutes later Brenda is back, lunch project has been cancelled! Too slippery and zero visibility and within the hour we have nearly 2″ on the rail. Just as quickly it all melts and now we are back to light rain.

The forecast is less than 1/2″ overnight and the same for Friday. However I awake to 6″ on the rail and it has finally stopped at 1030. Now its relatively warm, bright blue skies, and the melt begins again!!

 

TONY DOWN

 

 

 

 

 

STILL WET & MISERABLE

 

Its wet, very wet!

But it is melting

No changes with constant showers and blizzard type snow bursts. The temps are still up there so the melt continues and the mud stays just as deep as the water struggles to find a way to seep down.

The snow continues to melt and more and more hidden Christmas decorations come into view. Another few days and I should be able to start harvesting all that is left.

Finally some progress on the weight front as 201.0 pops up for the first time …. I’m  hoping this will continue. It could also be mild enough for a ride but, the winds are starting to increase again so I’ll stay on hold until I see a green light.

Time for the duty “Spring Forward” so next up all the joys of changing clocks. No problems today getting my watch to move to the new time, just an expected battery change to come in April.

At last I stop wimping and get out there and battle against the wind and manage 13.54 before the cold gets to me, but at least I got some done even if I’m a long way behind this year by about 600 miles!

Monday morning and the snow (non forecast) is coming down in buckets and about an inch on the rail and its still dark with the time change. Dreary and miserable at dawn and now its a mix of snow and rain and looks like its here for the next few days.

My shoulder has been so sore that the rehab exercises have been out of the question as the pain is too much. Today at Rehab it was just heat treatment and muscle therapy, and don’t do the exercises unless it doesn’t hurt.

Today’s snow has now melted and interestingly going into Cortez this morning ALL signs of winter snow had gone!! Back here they are changing the forecast AGAIN and we are now looking at ANOTHER 2-4″ of snow Tuesday night.

Tuesday and now raining but I can see grass in some places out front and with impending doom in the forecast I have to get out there this morning, despite the rain, and pick up buried cables and lights.

Across the road there are emergency vehicles, fire engines, police, ambulances, a giant tow truck and all manner (3) power pole trucks and a host of pickups and walking supervisors. Out with the camera and see what’s happening.

The white slab side truck (under the yellow arm) ran off the road and hit the power pole

Uncle Tom Cobley and friends

Despite the pouring rain I manage to get most of the cables and lights out of the front beds and from around Scuffy. Finishing about 1800, still raining, my hat, boots, and gloves are all soaked as the snow is still 10″ in places and there are still some areas where the cables and lights are still frozen in.

 

More changes to the forecast again and now 3-5″ for overnight Tuesday followed by another 4-6″ for Wednesday daytime! Up around 0700 this morning and surprise, surprise 6″ on the rail and an even bigger surprise when I see one of our School buses go rolling by …… although I did see Curt’s bus running about 30 minutes late!

Good Morning!

Solid 6″ on the rail

Looking at “Scuffy” this morning I’m well pleased I got those lights, cables and the last of the Santakins cleaned up yesterday!

Yesterday

Today

 

TONY DOWN

 

 

 

 

 

RAIN AND MORE RAIN

Becoming a yukky mess

About sums it up!

With temperatures not dipping below freezing and a week of near constant rain the snow pack in and around our dwelling is melting and turning everything into a very muddy swamp. Can’t complain as maybe I can get to the buried Christmas decoration cables and the last of the display items.

I’m sure we are not fully done with the snow but a “clean up break” would be appreciated. Might also be nice to start racking up the miles for this year and shedding those last 7lbs that seem to be plateauing backwards and forwards and can be soul destroying when you are staying on their plan.

Despite all the rain of the last couple of days this morning awoke to yet another 5″ on the rail while the forecast was showing “less than 1/2″ total overnight”.  Melting like crazy with mega sunshine and clear skies with temps forecast to be around 50F all week.

Lets hope if the melt goes well I’ll be able to find a decent surface to ride on without getting plastered with slush and spray.

Not quite

Almost

Here we are, Wednesday 3/6/19,and all that 5″ melted and now its rain, and more rain for the rest of the week although the temps are up around the 50F mark, but its doesn’t feel like it as its very damp and muddy and of course the snow has changed color with all the mud and slop!

Up at the bus barn two of our lady drivers are off, one has been sick since last Thursday and the other is away all week tending to her brood who got sent home with the Flu. So 3 days driving the D3 Mouse bus to wrap up the pay period.

Friday morning and still raining, muddy and melting! The last of the Christmas Decorations are down to about 6″ cover so perhaps by Sunday they can be rescued after “66th Night”. New LOW on the weight front of 202.2 this morning …… I want to see the 190’s!!!

 

TONY DOWN

 

 

 

 

SUNSHINE AT LAST

 

Need to find some snow free roads

I think I can safely say that even here, up in the mountains, we have now had enough snow and, much as we love it, it will be nice to return to some warm, wind free, weather and glorious sunshine. The temps are now showing 57F on the outside Weather Station and that is confirmed by the secondary equipment of the standard old fashioned thermometer. Its so warm in fact that I’m THINKING of a gentle break-in ride for yours truly!

Time to open the 2019 account

But first, some more snow and ice clearing as there has just been another massive fall off the roof. Then I think I should change that other battery on the fork leg of the Roubaix to keep the speedo and odometer in a state of union.

New battery in the sender unit

Wednesday and the snow was cleared, and the other battery was changed during yesterday afternoon. Can’t see any reason not to go for the FIRST RIDE OF THE YEAR, the bike is ready, I have all the kit, the weather is much better and there is NO WIND !

With all the excuses pushed to one side the Roubaix was carried out to the road over the ice, slush and snow and for the first time since  11/24/18 the wheels went round again. Double set of thermals, no wind, and 11.18 miles are in the book to open the account for 2019.

Thursday 2/28/19 and although the forecast is warmish there is no sign of the sun. I’ll give it one hour and see how it looks. An extra trip this afternoon on D30. It didn’t warm up, the sun didn’t break through so I chopped wood and cleaned the Roubaix after my ride from yesterday ….. it was pretty mucky!

Here we are on a dismal Sunday morning 3/3/19 and the memory banks tell me it was 55years ago yesterday when  the boy child, having achieved the “magic” 17.5 years of age started his Officer Training at RAF South Cerney  and onward air force career.

Yesterday the next storm system arrived and its been RAINING ever since and looks like continuing most of this week. The long period of permafrost is abating and the huge puddles and lakes from all the melt run off are beginning to seep into the mud.

I’ll wait !

With wet roads, rain and mud everywhere, any thoughts of riding have been cancelled until there is a positive change in the weather.

TONY DOWN

 

 

HERE WE GO AGAIN!

Here it comes!

President’s Day on Monday, no schools, banks or post ……. but it does start snowing again and turns into a real mess. It snows most of the day and then blizzard conditions overnight ….. yuk!

Yesterday I ring in to see if my trip to Durango is still on but find its been cancelled but there are 2 more on Friday and Saturday so I elect to take the Friday one as I’m scheduled for the ski trip on Sunday.

More rehab this morning and down to 204.4 so some progress at last. Back from rehab and the weather forecast is turning crap again and the warnings begin. Snowfall predictions keep changing and by Tuesday evening we now have a Winter Storm Advisory.

Doom and gloom for the 4 Corners and we live under the Crab’s right claw.

Wednesday morning and it has now become a Winter Storm Warning until 1700 on Friday and the highest snowfalls are Rico and Durango with 20″ each and ourselves (Dolores) and Mancos at 14″ Chances of the Durango trip? slim me thinks!

Next one moving in

No surprises so another 6″ on the rail on Thursday morning and no school buses to be seen. Facebook tells me there is a “snow day” for Dolores and after my trip into Cortez my Physio tells me Cortez are also closed.

Rico enjoying winter!

Rico and Durango are getting hammered and I see NO HOPE for Friday’s trip! Better get a load more wood upstairs as its looking awful.

1600 and its moving into the 4 Corners for round 3

Fire burning, and watch it coming down. Only 15 minutes and the roads are covered and its looking like it won’t stop all night. Around 1730 Larry rings to say a Snow Day has already been declared for tomorrow and the trip is cancelled. It continues snowing and getting thicker by bedtime.

Thursday morning, about 5″ overnight

0700 and I’m up and looking at my “crisis” on my Southern Border as I survey the load …….. clearly the “Clown President” has got his way and the wall has been built!!

A solid 14″ on the rail!

The Met Office has been shut down (Gov workers) …. no reports from the corner of the balcony

Time to dig out

Friday becomes a “rescue day” as I have to shovel enough of the snow out of the way so that the dogs can go outside. Fill the feral cat bowl for Rocky Racoon and dig a pathway out to the Workshop where he has made his home.

Plowing begins after cars are cleaned off and moved and I set about clearing snow and ice out to the men’s bathroom. Next two loads of slightly damp wood from the storm are hauled in. Now time to shovel off all the new snow from the balcony and uncover the Met station.

No sooner finished snow clearing and taking first sips of hot choc when it starts Snowing Again and drops another 2″ just to rub it in.

 

TONY DOWN

 

VALENTINE’S DAY IN THE ER

Not a planned scenario or venue for this normally festive and romantic day but one of great necessity this year!

Since the end of January Brenda has been on various anti-biotics, steroids, and inhalers as she has been finding it hard to breathe. Finally after a semi sleepless night, by midday she had had enough and we drive into Cortez for a visit to the ER …… and yes, it is Valentine’s Day.

No sooner in the hospital and they rush her into the ER and some high speed work begins with doctors and nurses plugging her in to all manner of monitors and electrical devices.

More and more cables are connected and very soon she is looking like a human generator. First dose of nebulizers are smoking away as the mobile x-ray machine and team arrive.

With initial diagnostics complete, an armful of blood taken, the wait begins as more and more specialists arrive and depart with their findings.

More Doctors and equipment, best guess scenarios, and more nebulizers as we await the x-ray results. All good on the x-rays and now a steroid drip goes in while yet another nebulizer gets sucked .

Senior nurse returns and says its most likely COPD which really doesn’t come as any big surprise although she did give up smoking 3 years ago. He also states ” these steroids can kick in and YOU might fly off the handle over nothing!”

With breathing restored, panic over, and after 4 hours of excellent care and medicine we are free to go.

Drip complete they cut Brenda free and we are out and on the way home, Cards and Flowers yes, but NO chocolates as Brenda is now  on a low sugar intake and I’m on Nutrisystem.

Well no chocolates anyway.

A lack luster pool session on Saturday and home we go and settle down to the roaring log fire  …….. when suddenly those steroids kick in and I’m accused of everything in the LOG department and its MY fault for making her cough as I’m deliberately using the wrong wood!!!!!!!

FIREWOOD , firewood , firewood!!!!!

Well, at least I was warned, so ………….

Follow the Doctor’s advice

 

TONY DOWN

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

STILL MORE TO COME

After a good weekend at pool and a no hassle Ski trip to Telluride without any hitches there is a chance of 1-2″ tonight starting after 0400. I get up at 0230 and nothing yet.

0600 and up for some coffee and this is what greets me! Its coming down in buckets, big buckets, and there is 6″on the rail in less than 4 hours!!!!

A lot more than the forecast 1-2″

So much it has STOPPED the weather station and the rotation of the anemometer

No school buses this morning and the plows are everywhere. It stops around 1000 and I venture up to the bus barn and fill in the activity forms that we had run out of. My next trip to Ouray has already been cancelled because someone had the dates wrong (again) and I did this trip a short while ago.

Wednesday now, most of the 6″ has gone and the next deluge, which was promised to be HUGE has diminished and it now seems it could be mainly rain as the temps are in the low 40’s F

Looking grim!

Home from another session of physio on the shoulder and the Director has been calling. Seems Patty, the D11 Horse driver, has damaged her foot. Can I drive this afternoon? “Of course”, and this might be for a few days depending on what she has done ….. we will see when we get to the bus barn this afternoon.

Drive the route and back to the barn where Larry tells me she will be in tomorrow morning ….. hardy or foolhardy?   anyhooo  pool tonight of the 9 Ball variety and once again there are a mass of hopefuls for tonight’s comp. I start well with three wins of the needed 5 and should have won round 4 when I had everything going on a long 9 and playing off the cushion it was straight as an arrow and I needed a  little angle to ensure “no follow on” but after sinking the 9 the bloody table, which is not true, allowed the cue ball to curl in!!! Now in the loser’s bracket I win two more games and I’m playing in “3rd or Better” with the ever grumpy and argumentative Michael who is contesting my first win when he shot the 9 in a pocket that he didn’t nominate. 3rd was good enough and with Brenda suffering it was time to go home at 2300 and another long session on the tables.

The big weather picture is getting WORSE in my opinion but they say only 1/2″ in each of the 3 reporting periods. Judge for yourself,

Slap bang over us, snowing like hell, and beginning to settle!

For the last 3 weeks Brenda has been suffering from an inability to breathe and has been on different anti-biotics and various inhalers all to no real improvement. A very disturbed night for everybody and this morning (Valentines Day) the decision is made for a visit to the Cortez Hospital ER. It snows nearly all the way into Cortez turning over to rain and sleet as we approach the hospital. More on this saga in the next article.

In my vast experience as an aviator I have found these latest weather radar pictures somewhat unbelievable as I have had more MET briefings than most people have had hot breakfasts and as I explained to Brenda from these images we are in for some SERIOUS snow when the temps drop this evening.

Really nasty!!!

……. and so it is! Continuous wet snow piling up and since we got home amazingly the weather service has changed it’s mind, issued various winter storm advisories and winter storm warnings. The daytime and nighttime predictions have gone up from a 1/2″ for each to 1-2″ for the afternoon and 3-5″ overnight.

However, enough is rapidly becoming enough.

please !

 

TONY DOWN

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

STILL SNOWING

Thursday 7th Feb and finally the snow has stopped and we are back to blue skies for a few days but very cold in the aftermath of the current bout of winter storms.

Needless to say any thoughts of cycling and knocking miles off the 4000 target are ONLY thoughts as today the roads are snow covered and the temps are well below freezing with an overnight forecast of -1F.

To go with the theme the Director rang me late yesterday afternoon with a request for me to take this Sunday’s ski trip which is fine by me. Just a shame you are not allowed to ski yourself.

Instructor, or not, NO SKIING in case you can’t drive home

You can watch, …….. on top of “See Forever”

No true parallel demos for YOU!

Saturday morning, cold, very windy, but no snow in the forecast so all looks good for the Activity ski trip tomorrow. Pool this afternoon and I’m taking a couple of extra sticks as someone is thinking of buying them …… we will see how that goes.

Who will be King today ?

One of the many “Michaels” arrives and announces to one and all he is paying for everyone’s entry as he won a LARGE sum of money on last week’s Superbowl. It seems the news has got out and we are treated to our biggest entry EVER with 32 players! With today’s numbers you need four consecutive wins to get in the money and then if you win round five you are either first or second. Should you lose then you will play for 3rd and better. For me after last week’s 3rd place overall, despite my first round loss, I sail through all 5 games without a loss and meet Juan in the final! We started at 1400 and its now gone 2100 !!! I miss the black in game 1 and this sets up Juan perfectly. Round 2 of the final and this time I don’t make any mistakes and victory is mine! Not only a very satisfying win for that 1st place but a pretty good payout of $77.50 due to the number of players. I also get $5.00 from Andy who took a side bet on me, and I sold one stick to Ernesto for $40.00 so overall a very pleasant day on the tables.

Mr Shark for me!

Rehab exercises done, weight down a smidge this morning, lets hope that continues after a few days “plateauing” which is never a good feeling as you feel as though you are achieving nothing even though you are following the program.

TONY DOWN

2019 TARGETS

 

As we move into February time again to set targets and goals for the coming year. On the cycling front the target for this year will be the same as last year at 4000 miles.

Health wise the first issue is to get back down to my desired fighting weight of 195 pounds, or lbs, in old money. The Nutrisystem worked well in the past and seems to be going in the right direction this time as I move into week 2.

This coming week its also off for some physio on the damaged left shoulder and see if that helps or if I need surgery ?

Need to get some skiing in with all this snow and then start thinking motorbikes again as the Beemer is back up and running.

Plenty of snow this year!

Lets go !

Beemer ready for Spring!

The Superglitz Yam and little brother, No Excuses Cub, both need their spring do-over and then some light riding on the 3 line.

Got the “winter” sulk on

Caster & Pollux ….. the heavenly rides

Superglitz  at the ready

Don’t forget me!

More Activity trips for the weekend with another basketball trip up to Norwood on Friday and then skiing up at Telluride despite the awful storm forecast for Sunday.

Meanwhile its 8 Ball as always on Saturday and today I manage to screw myself in my first game with a small dose of overconfidence and scratch the cue ball off the 8 when a bit more of a good common sense shot would have been the way to go!

However, now on the loser’s bench and in the 1st Out round I win through this one beating Marty while the other pairing are struggling to finish their game. I played another 6 games beating Jeannie, Doug, then Brenda along with Ernesto (who is getting a lot better) and Dave who clearly hadn’t brought his “A” game. I’m now in 3rd and better against Destry and its close but he wins and goes on to take 1st place, but I certainly had a fun afternoon despite my 1st round loss, and was pleased to finish in the money with another 3rd place.

The ski trip went as planed and the weather was fortunately not as bad as the forecast.

Tuesday and off to the physio and a 45 min session and he tells me about 6 weeks, but no surgery, and just need to strengthen up those rotator muscles to hold everything together.

All done with rubber bands and a friendly door

Home in time to set off for some SAR of the Christmas items still buried under the first falls of snow. This goes well with many items extracted but some are still frozen in by their cables and are a long way off from coming free. The forecast is for another 10″ over the next 3 days …….. but at least I made a start!

Thursday and the snow has stopped.

 

TONY DOWN

WEIGHING & WAITING

Coming up to the end of week one on the diet and time to weigh in and get those answers from the Doctor.

They agree my shoulder is poorly! Just booked the first session of PT. Having examined the sample they say I need a course of Heart Burn medicine ?     ……… and its not the local dreaded infection so I’ll take the 14 day course and see where that goes.

Wednesday lunchtime and the Director calls with an unexpected drive on D30, the Wolf bus, keep them coming!

Out for a little pool of the 9 Ball variety which goes quite well but we both fell short coming into the final turn. However, a few Gt’s helped and their diet plan is working too!

The main diet is working and today the scales show 208.0 which is a loss of 3.4 lbs for week 1. Can’t complain at that so stick with the program.

Not there yet, I’ll settle for 195 this time round

Back in my “homeland” I feel a bit sorry for Prince Phillip but he is 97 when all is said and done and after accident 1 he was out and about in a brand NEW Range Rover!!!

Ooops !! …… bloody peasant driving around the Sandringham estate scaring all my pheasants…..  nerve of the fellow!

Well never mind your wife will get you a new one

……. and so SHE did …….Very nice

Perks of the job ……. (that’s me in the green hat )

Time to get out there and get a few miles in as Nutrisystem say add some exercise in week 2

Nice idea, conditions reasonable with zero wind and temps just above freezing but …….. the battery in the speedo has quit! Same problem as last year, seems they last a year or 4644 miles! Could I find the bag with all the spares and replacement batteries ??  Of course not! …… however I did find a NEW unit and eventually managed to get it set correctly for this year but the time had slipped away and temps were on the way down and wind was on the way up … NO ride then for January 2019 …… but then Brenda remembered where she had put the bag with all the bits so the day finishes on a high.

 

TONY DOWN