Temperatures Dip Once Again


Posted by Annie in Outdoors on November 29, 2010

Owning a cabin in Twain Harte is one of the simple pleasures in life that many cling to. To many a trip to the family cabin brings back fond memories of an uncaptured youth that time cannot erase.

Twain Harte Triangle

Six-years-ago I had the opportunity to meet one of our neighbors. She came up to Twain Harte for her annual week-long vacation at “the cabin”, which she had purchased with her husband in 1969, she proudly retold the family history as she handed me a plate of freshly baked cookies, to welcome our family to the neighborhood.

The lovely woman appeared to be in her 80’s and was accompanied by several family members. I could tell by the way her face lit up as she spoke that a trip home to the cabin, had brought back a flood of memories of happy times spent with her late husband and children during their summer breaks.

Just two short years later, the woman passed on but the memories live on, in her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren as they make the trek each summer to the cabin where they recall fond memories of their grandparents, all the while making new memories to share with their own children one day.

They also learned a tough lesson last year, when the water pipes froze in their mountain home, because they were too late getting here to winterize their cabin. Each year cabin owners experience frozen pipes, when the temperatures dip down below freezing leading to water damage and broken plumbing.

As I sit here writing it’s 23 degrees, down 2 degrees from an hour ago. It’s bitter cold out there tonight. I hope your cabin or home has been winterized and is safe from the freezing weather.

I have some good news to bring with all this frozen news: beginning on Tuesday, weather reports are calling for warmer temperatures for the rest of the week, with temperatures predicted to climb to a balmy 58 degrees. If you haven’t prepared your cabin for winter, there may still be time, so make it a point to check on things this week. Better safe than sorry.

There has been talk of this being one of the coldest winters on record in the Motherlode. I haven’t dressed the windows for the weather yet this year, so I think I’ll do that this week, while it is still early in the season. I like to tack quilts and colorful comforters up over the windows for the winter to help insulate us from the cold and cut down on heating costs. While they might not make a fashion statement our family is warm and cozy inside and the look is tasteful.

After my post yesterday, crews were brought in to clean up the triangle in front of 7-11. I’d just like to say thank you. It was getting pretty scary driving through there.

Stay warm folks.

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A Sparkling Morning


Posted by Annie in Outdoors, Twain Harte News on November 28, 2010

Sitting here looking out my window into the world, I can imagine the slopes at Dodge Ridge full of smiling people, having fun and enjoying the brilliance the sun brings to the party.

Ski Dodge Ridge

The sun is out, the trees are heavy with snow and the roads — now that’s another story. The county has a team of plows out — one plowing directly behind the other. Probably due to what the locals call “Sierra Cement.” The roads are pitted with snow and ice. Even though the plow team came through about 30-minutes ago, it didn’t improve the road conditions much.

However, the sun will do it’s part and in an hour or so, the ice and snow will give away to puddles, only to freeze up again tonight and start the process all over again. Most motorists know enough to slow down and use caution on these mountain roads.

I would like to remind vacation cabin owners to consider using the most eastern Twain Harte entrance, on days like this, when the roads can be nasty in places — instead of driving the seven-curves, which gets little sun due to the heavy overhead tree coverage. That portion of Twain Harte Drive is the location of many accidents for the unsuspecting motorist. Even when Highway 108 is very clear, this time of year the seven-curves can be pretty wicked.

Another area to use caution is the triangle, in front of 7-11. That hill in front of Prudential was very nasty yesterday when we drove through there. So, use caution when traveling the roads. If you must get out to take care of business or personal needs, try to do so between the hours of 1:00 p.m and 3:00 p.m. Avoid traveling the roads after dark if at all possible as a matter of safety.

Leland Snow Park is open and with the bright blue skies we are seeing today, it would be a perfect day to get out and play in the snow.

“We will be open on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays Until December 10th, after we will be open everday. We currently have a 3-4′ base of snow! Hours for the 2010/2011 season will be 10am-5pm. Please call us at 209-965-4719 or keep checking our website or join our facebook for updates.”

Kids ages 5-12 will enjoy the thrill of revving miniature snowmobiles while zipping around the oval course.

Be sure to get out and enjoy the beautiful mountain slopes. It’s a splendid day to explore the great outdoors. At 4,000 feet, we had around 4-6 inches of new snow fall last night. Residents living at 5,000 saw another foot of snowfall Saturday evening.

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Little New Accumulation


Posted by Annie in Twain Harte News on November 27, 2010

A weather advisory had been issued from 4:00 a.m. Saturday, until 4:00 a.m. Sunday. I fully expected to wake up to another 6-8 inches of newly fallen snow. I am happy to report that did not happen. We have roughly a 1/2 inch of new snow, but it is really coming down as I write.

The good folks in Sugar Pine added another couple of inches over night. The tow trucks have been busy rescuing stranded drivers and those who are stuck in ditches, etc…

I’ve been contacted by several people who were waiting to see what was going to happen before deciding to make the drive to their Twain Harte cabin or their first trip to Dodge Ridge for the season. Our neighbors decided to brave the trip and spent the entire day yesterday, shoveling the Sierra Cement from their driveway.

Wednesday night services were cancelled at the Chapel in the Pines, due to a fallen tree on Tuolumne Drive and several others that made it almost impossible to actually get to the church. The downed trees have been mostly removed and services will be held tomorrow at their regular time.

Dodge Ridge is expecting another 1-2 feet of new snow today. If you have been tempted in the past to buy a season ticket but were not sure you would get your moneys worth, this is the year to buy. Dodge Ridge is poised to have a record breaking year in both snowfall and in ticket sales, if the weather continues to provide excellent conditions. According to their website, they have had 5-feet of new snowfall in five-days. That is pretty incredible.

If you are considering traveling to Twain Harte and points beyond, please be prepared. Keep the following safety measures in mind and enjoy your trip to our winter wonderland.

  1. Slow down — No need to hurry, the snow isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. So, use caution and slow down, the roads maybe icy, especially in areas where the sun is blocked out by our beautiful trees (like the 7-curves).
  2. Carry Chains — If you are only traveling as far as Twain Harte, you may not need them but the law requires you have them in your vehicle. Please keep in mind that many back streets have not been cleared well. Be on the look out for fallen trees, while most have been cleared from the road, there are places where down trees are still a hazard for motorists.
  3. Wear Proper Attire — Temperatures are unseasonally cold right now. Hats, gloves, long underwear, boots, coats are not just for fashion statements. Should you get stranded or be forced to walk in the cold, having the proper clothing can make all the difference. Even a simple trip to the market can be cause for concern, should you get stuck and be forced to wait for help.
  4. Communication — Cell service was out in the area for 6-day and was just restored Thursday evening. Don’t count on being able to use your cell phone in an emergency. It is always a good idea to check in with a friend or family member. Let them know where you are going, how long you expect it to take you and agree to check in from time to time. Then if you experience vehicle trouble (or worse) someone will know to look for you. People do disappear in these parts each year. Sadly, many are never found.
  5. Winterize the Car — Be sure to check fluid levels, tires, etc… Wiper blades can be very important this time of year. Be sure to buy the best you can afford, after all visiblity is essential. While you are at it, toss in a couple of blanks, water, and high energy snacks — be sure to bring enough for everyone. Find more winter survival tips and links.

I just received word that the Dardanelle Resort is closed for the season and will reopen in May 2010.

More later — Stay Warm!

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