Wednesday, September 30, 2009

September in One Big Blog Entry

Okay, so the month of September flew by without so much as an update to "Life"! Such as it is sometimes during busy (and even, not so busy) times. I did not get back into running training mode, so, there was no marathon training log to maintain. As a result, all I have to offer is the pasting of the Wunderground blog along with this short introductory paragraph.

September Slide Show

Wednesday, September 30, 2009: Mostly cloudy today. Some rain finally showed up during the late afternoon. Just enough to settle the dust a bit, but not very far into the dust layer. With the clouds, cool temperatures were the order for the day with the high just making it into the middle 50's. Clouds and cool conditions are forecast for the next few days.

Clouds to the East After the Early Evening Shower
Evening shower and clouds heading east

Tuesday, September 29, 2009: Almost running out of days in September that can provide some precipitation to close the gap in the monthly total. I have only recorded about 0.03" for the entire month. That is about 1.5" below the month normal by this date. As a result, all is dry and dusty.

Color in the evening sky just after sunset
Color in the evening sky just after sunset

Monday, September 28, 2009: This may be the last in the string of dry, mild, mostly sunny days. Today was a mix of high clouds with some of the smoke from forest fires adding to the color of the morning sky. Temperatures rose into the mid 70's with the high clouds staying throughout the day.

Clouds at Sunrise View from the West Hill
Some smoke in the air along with moring clouds give color to the sunrise

Sunday, September 27, 2009: A cool start for today. After the strong wind that blew most of yesterday, today was relatively quiet, sunny, continued dry, and not quite as warm.

It's all about Starting the Day ... Over and Over
Middle of the three sunrise images

Saturday, September 26, 2009: Windy, warm, and continued sunny and dry. Even as the days get shorter and the track of the sun moves day by day toward the south, here in NW Montana summer continues. The forecast keeps moving the cooler and possible rain producing days one day further out with each new day. The coming week should see a change (maybe?) with cooler temperatures and possibly some rain ahead.

Box Elder Tree Holds out in Dusty, Sunny, Windy Day
Box Elder tree with dust in the wind

Friday, September 25, 2009: Sunny, warm and dry. Record maximum temperatures in some reporting locations for today. Mostly smoky, dry, and dusty around the ranch.

Sunrise from the West Hill (start of the dog walk)
The sunrise is now happening at the start of the walk up the west hill

Thursday, September 24, 2009: Clear and near record high temperatures. This made it a good day to take a day trip from the ranch to Glacier National Park and Hungry Horse Dam.

Lake McDonald in Glacier National Park
Lake McDonald in GNP on a smokey hazy early fall day

Hungry Horse Dam in NW Montana
Hungry Horse Dam

Wednesday, September 23, 2009: Clear, dry, and mild conditions again today at the ranch. There is just a touch of color in the trees, and the grass and woods ground cover is beginning to make the transition as the first full day of fall gives shorter daylight.

Just a Touch of Color in the Box Elder Tree
Box Elder tree frames Patti doing the corral cleanup

Tuesday, September 22, 2009: The switchover day for summer to fall began with sunny and near summer-like temperatures (just a little cooler early morning low than a mid-summer day would have). The dry trend continues with a lot of dust in the air any time the horses walk or trot through the dry lots. As an extra bonus, Patti's mom joins us today, during a walk with the dogs.

Taffy, Patti, her mom, and Titan at the Family Time Rest Bench
Patti's mom, age 90, visiting the ranch for the early fall

Sun Rays Showing some Dust as Dunder Paces in his Corral
Sun rays and dust early in the day

Monday, September 21, 2009: Totally clear conditions overnight resulted in low temperatures in the upper 20's. The pastures were frosty during the morning walk with the dogs. Clear conditions continued throughout the day, with dry and dusty paddocks for the horses.

Frosty Grass in Morning View toward the Sunrise
Frosty grass in view toward the new day's sun

Sunday, September 20, 2009: Some clouds around both early and late today but, again, very little precipitation. The day was partly cloudy early in the morning and became mostly sunny and that continued through the middle of the day. Late in the afternoon a very light shower (trace amounts only) went through the area. By the time of the last animal check it was again mostly clear and making way for some frosty conditions likely for tomorrow.

Alfalfa Bales Delivered this Morning

Saturday, September 19, 2009: Sunny beginning but with increasing clouds throughout the day. No precipitation today and just some windy conditions to go with the clouds.

Evening Clouds over the Box Elder and East Treeline
Evening clouds over the east treeline

Friday, September 18, 2009: Clear and cool this morning. The sun and clear sky conditions for the entire day gave warm temperatures and a perfect day for a grill out at the fire-ring.

Dogs at the Evening Cookout
Dogs in the grass around fire-ring during the evening cookout

Thursday, September 17, 2009: A quick thunder shower with just a trace of rain swooped through just at sunrise. It resulted in just water-drop marks in the dust, and actually created more dust than it settled. Heavier rainfall could be seen in the distance, and, in fact, there was evidence of a good shower having taken place when I went to town for some morning appointments. At the ranch, as I mentioned, the rainfall was very light. After the early morning clouds scooted away to the east, the rest of the day was mostly sunny, dry, and warm.

Sunrise after the Light Morning Rain
Sun under passing clouds after the early morning rain

Wednesday, September 16, 2009: Clear and dry again. Not much of a change in weather from day to day, but, you know, in the background, the days are changing.

Morning View across the Pastures
View during the morning walk across the upper pasture

Tuesday, September 15, 2009: Sunny and dry again. Today, I raked the grass areas that were cut yesterday. Since conditions continue to be quite dry, I decided to also switch tractor implements and pull the baler through the windrows to make bales one last time for the season.

Loading the Last Bale of 2009!
bionicdan loading the last bale for 2009

Monday, September 14, 2009: Today again kept up the dry trend that September has brought. Since this is the last week of summer, I decided it was time to climb the north hill and take some pictures of the ranch in mostly summer conditions. Later, I decided to use the continuing string of dry days to cut the creek grass and some of the longer grass along it. This is the second cutting for some of the area, but the creek grass was long, but still green. Some high clouds drifted through later in the day but no precipitation accompanied the cloud cover.

View from the North Hill
View from part way up the north hill

Sunday, September 13, 2009: A perfectly clear, sunny, and dry day today. Some chore activities were done early in the day (putting up 4-tons of hay, splitting and stacking wood). The horses enjoyed cleaning up the area where the hay (alfalfa/grass mix) was dropped before we moved it to the hay barn.

Horses Graze Hay Leftovers
Horses get extra nibbles from hay bales

Saturday, September 12, 2009: The long string of sunny, dry and warm days continued today at the ranch.

Sunrise from the West Hill
Sunrise from the west hill during the morning walk with the dogs

Friday, September 11, 2009: Another sun filled and rainless day at the ranch.

9-11, Remembered
Sunrise and ranch flag images superimposed

Thursday, September 10, 2009: A day of sun and nice late summer weather in NW Montana. Dry conditions continue.

Morning Sunlight and the Old Barn
Sunlight on the grass near the old barn

Wednesday, September 9, 2009: Another cool start to the day, but sunny conditions began to warm things up during the morning. Some high clouds, but a great day in NW Montana.

Sunrise and Clouds began the Day
Sunrise in merging of three images

Tuesday, September 8, 2009: An early sign of the winter to follow with a light frost this morning. A clear overnight sky allowed temperatures to drop into the low 30's. The day was mostly sunny with temperatures rebounding nicely supported by a mix of clouds and sun throughout day and evening.

Tracks in the Morning Frost
First frosty trails for 2009 summer transition to fall

Monday, September 7, 2009: Mostly cloudy again this morning. Much like yesterday with periods of clouds and sun for most of the day. Even though the clouds looked like they could contain some precipitation, it all stayed up there, in those clouds. The automatic gauges have not clicked off any amount for the entire month. There was some that accumulated in the plastic gauge, but not much there either.

Clouds over the Ranch this Morning
Morning clouds over the ranch during the morning walk across the pasture

Sunday, September 6, 2009: Mostly cloudy to start the day followed by periods of sun and clouds. The late afternoon became mostly sunny. The clearing sky should put us on the list for quite a cool down tonight.

Streams of Clouds in the Late Afternoon Sky
Clouds over the Box Elder during the early evening.

Saturday, September 5, 2009: The forecast stated mostly cloudy. The sky did have some early morning clouds, but they were mostly gone for a period during the early morning. At about 10:30 AM the clouds rolled in again. They just gave a trace of rain (drops, actually) and it was a sun and cloud mix until early evening when mostly cloudy conditions returned. The real excitement of the day took place during the final animal check. At that time, two of the dogs (Taffy and Titan) decided to find a skunk. It was not the best way to end a day!

Colored Sky before the Sun Rise
Painted clouds move through the sky before sunrise

Friday, September 4, 2009: There were some clouds around the edges this morning and into the middle of the day. There was less wind than yesterday and the temperatures continued to be cool in the morning and warm without being hot during the afternoon. We could use some precipitation though to settle the dust around the area.

Clear Blue Sky during the Early Afternoon ... and the Box Elder, once again
Afternoon view of the Box Elder

Thursday, September 3, 2009: Today was a breezy day with a mix of clouds. The dry conditions of the last couple of weeks resulted in a lot of dust blowing in the wind. Warm afternoon temperatures gave way to another cool down soon after sunset.

Sunrise between the Yard Pines
Sunrise between the pines and below the clouds

Wednesday, September 2, 2009: Another in a string of days that remain sunny, dry and warm. The lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer, continue.

View across the Pastures
View across the pasture during the morning walk

Tuesday, September 1, 2009: A clear start to another month.

Sunrise to start September, 2009