Sunrise today will be at 9:31 this morning, and sunset at 5:37 this evening for a nominal day length of 8 hours 6 minutes. That’s 6 minutes 44 second less than yesterday. Since I can’t drive in the dark, and daylight savings ends next Sunday, I am severely limited on where I can go and need to schedule things like doctor visits carefully. In fact I’ll probably have to take Van Tran (the local handicapped transit system) for OLLI classes next week.

Fairbanks winter roads

White ice on pavement. The stop sign is the one I skidded through last week. Saturday (when the picture was taken) I started braking early enough to stop — just.

Last week started mostly clear and cold (nights near 0°F.) It hasn’t warmed up much, but for the last few days it’s been cloudy with very little change in snow cover: no snowfall, no melt. The sun is rapidly approaching 10° above the horizon at noon, and it won’t be long before it is completely hidden behind the trees south of my house, even at its highest. I can still see it when I go to town, but it is so low that driving into the sun is a daylong problem.

Roads with lots of fast-moving traffic get blown clear as the snow falls or plowed, but the secondary and slower roads are all white ice. This isn’t too bad at low temperatures, but I’ve been surprised a time or two by just how slick they are in the 20’s and above. Especially paved roads: the gravel roads actually have an advantage when everything’s covered with white ice.

Update mid-morning: now that it’s light out, I can see that we did have a little snow last night, and it’s still snowing. (VERY lightly; I couldn’t be sure through the window screens.) Also, I just signed up for #Writemotivation for November. I’m not getting in NaNoWrite, but I need to get cracking on the edits for Rescue Operation.

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