Wednesday 16 July 2014

Worst Weather

I looked out the window at work yesterday afternoon and was relieved to see it was dark and cloudy outside - finally a little rain to cool things down, and maybe a riding lesson that didn't involve quite so much sweating!

As soon as I walked out the door, I realized my mistake - it was still really hot and muggy out there. More significantly, those weren't clouds and a rainy mist - it was smoke and ash from all the awful wildfires the hot, dry weather has brought. By the time I walked the four or five blocks to the train station, my chest and eyes were burning, and I was coughing and wheezing along with what sounded like half the people there with me. I can't imagine it being healthy for anyone (or the horses!) to be out exerting themself in that kind of air quality so I went ahead and cancelled my lesson. Disappointing, for sure. Realized I definitely made the right call when I got home and found my truck covered in ash - so crazy! Here's hoping those more directly affected by the fires are all evacuated safely (animals too!) and we get some rain in the forecast.
Seriously no clouds, that's all smoke...(pic from the Edmonton Sun)

With the crazy high temps we rode in last weekend, and the severe storm warnings from my last lesson, it got me thinking - what's the craziest weather you've intentionally ridden in? Unintentionally?

I'll start: 

Intentionally - 2 summers ago I was only able to make it to the barn twice a week. Lesson day came and I was so excited to get out and ride Ginger that I ignored the crazy weather forecasts. About halfway to the barn the radio advised me we were officially under severe weather warnings, including a tornado watch. I was like...well...I'm most of the way to the barn already and the sun is shining out here... :) We did get a crazy storm about halfway through my lesson, and watched it getting closer and closer before poor Ginger got her first ride outside of the ring - a mad dash for the indoor. It sounded like the world was coming down around us, then an hour later the sun was back out. The good part of the story I made the right choice to not turn around and go home - my neighbourhood got hit really hard and had some bad storm damage.

Unintentionally - It used to happen way more often, but still does now and then if I head out on a longer ride. Anyone familiar with the Pacific Northwest/lower mainland of BC knows that in the winter they forecast rain nearly every day, sometimes rain and wind. That must get kind of boring/predictable for the forecasters, so they keep a little job security by mixing it up a bit: 'well in the morning we're looking at some misting, then late morning some showers, then afternoon a bit of a drizzle, and by evening some moderate sprinkling.' What they mean is it's going to rain all day, every day. So more than once, I've misinterpreted 'misting' or 'light drizzle' and headed out thinking that my rain gear will suffice, but sure enough I need to remember they meant to say 'rain...and wind....and lots of it!' Ginger likes to make a beeline for home, Lainey used to like to just turn her butt to it and look around at me now and then accusingly. Both of them are incredibly well broke when it comes to raincoats being put on and off and flapping around :)


1 comment

  1. I've ridden in extreme cold way more often than extreme heat/anything else. I took jumping lessons in -40 when I was a wild (read: stupid) teenager!