Words of Introduction
Hi folks, Storm Chaser Greg here. I’m pleased to be your guest-writer today, because ICICLES are a very important subject and I believe nobody is more qualified to tell you about them than I am.
Let me start with the question of whether icicles are symbols of winter beauty, or ice-cold assassins. The answer is BOTH.
Certainly nobody can look at those clear, crystalline shafts of ice and not be mesmerized by their glory. Yet, like one of Homer’s Sirens, an icicle’s attractiveness is a huge part of its danger.
If your parents were like my parents, Storm Chaser Ron & Storm Chaser Ann, they probably warned you to never stand underneath an icicle because it can spontaneously break away from the roof, fall at a high rate of speed, and pierce your skull.
My goal today is to demonstrate both the yin and the yang of icicle reality. I hope you learn from my experience.
Exploring the Icicles of MY Town
This year’s winter has not been a particularly good one for icicle viewing. Optimal icicle conditions require large amounts of snow accumulation on rooftops. Daytime sunshine then melts some of the snow which flows down to the eaves. When cold evening temperatures re-freeze the melted snow, ice dams form. The next morning, you can literally watch icicles form and grow in both length and volume.
Two winters ago, well, THAT was one helluva great icicle season. It was like the third snowiest winter of all time in Minnesota. I saw icicles that extended from roof to ground. I saw icicles that probably weighed more than 300 lbs.
I’ve given up on the hope of such a repeat this year. I just went out to find what I could find.
So far I’ve been concentrating on the beauty aspect of icicles, but it’s time to delve into safety and accident prevention. Please follow these guidelines:
Things didn’t end so well for me after pulling down that thick icicle. Sometimes it just doesn’t pay to help save other people’s lives.
I rode home after that. I was not pleased that the police chief didn’t take my unfortunate situation seriously. He kicked me off the property with a warning to never stand underneath icicles.
One thing I was pretty sure of is that icicles, like lightning, never strike twice. I believed I was immune to icicle attacks. I could not have been more wrong.