A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

A welcome moment of bright skies

Written December 20th, 2015 by Hasso Hering
A Southern Oregon pasture and vineyard in winter.

A Southern Oregon pasture and vineyard in winter.

There’s nothing like a break in the clouds when for days we’ve had nothing but dark skies and rain. You appreciate it even more when you’re on a bike ride in December, on a road bike that has no fenders and no place to put them.

My usual bike route out of Jacksonville in Southern Oregon takes me through the countryside outside Medford, where many vineyards have sprung up in recent decades. In the 1960s and ’70s, the main crop of the Rogue Valley was pears. Now many of the pear orchards are gone.

I don’t know the reason for the change and assume it has something to with the economics of agriculture. Or maybe pear growers got tired of spending many sleepless nights in the early spring, worrying about frost killing the budding fruit and thus that season’s crop. As far as I know, springtime cold is less of a problem for grapes.

But back to the here and now. The forecast is for rain followed by rain on the coast and in the valleys, with snow in the Cascades. And it’s not even winter yet.

In short, it looks like many Oregon Decembers over the last few decades. Leaving aside any possible contemplations of climate change, past and future, I think it is fair to say that at least so far, around here climate change has yet to make itself felt. (hh)

Posted in: Commentary
Tags: ,

2 responses to “A welcome moment of bright skies”

  1. CBonville says:

    Most of Oregon was in drought conditions just four months ago, if not less. This cold and wet start to winter may yet change for the worse.

  2. HowlingCicada says:

    “””… it’s not even winter yet”””

    Some things I noticed since moving here, with a couple stats …

    Fall seems to last about 2 weeks sometime in late October, then it’s Winter. Most years the closing date for bikes on seasonal trails in Corvallis and the OSU forests (Oct 31) seems right on target. That first big freeze a couple years ago was on Dec. 8, 2013 (10 below zero at Eugene airport – failing to break the daily record of -12 on Dec. 8, 1972)

    All the seasons seem earlier than elsewhere. Crocuses and daffodils usually bloom much earlier than in places like Virginia. There are seasonal climate graphs which clearly show the odd rapid drop and early, slower rise in temperature.


HH Today: A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley
Albany Albany Carousel Albany City Council Albany council Albany downtown Albany Fire Department Albany housing Albany parks Albany Planning Commission Albany police Albany Post Office Albany Public Works Albany riverfront Albany Station Albany streets Albany traffic Albany urban renewal Andy Olson Benton County Benton County parks bicycling bike lanes Bowman Park Bryant Park Calapooia River CARA City of Albany climate change coronavirus COVID-19 Cox Creek path Crocker Lane cumberland church cycling Dave Clark Path DEQ downtown Albany Edgewater Village global warming gun control Highway 20 Interstate 5 Kitzhaber Linn County marijuana medical marijuana Millersburg North Albany Road Obama ODOT Oregon coast Oregon legislature Oregon passenger rail Pacific Power Portland & Western Republic Services Riverside Drive Santiam Canal Talking Water Gardens The Banks Tom Cordier Union Pacific urban renewal Water Avenue Willamette River

Copyright 2020. All Rights Reserved. Hasso Hering.
Website Serviced by Santiam Communications
Hasso Hering