Whence Westerly Weather

I have run before the weather several times on my current journey. I ducked ahead of a Rockies early fall storm in October, hunkered down during a three day inundation in Indiana, raced south before DC was hit with a pre-holiday snow storm. But this morning I faced a due westerly course into the massive east-moving storm that is drenching the entire southwest U.S.

My early morning start from Fort Stockton, Texas found a deceptive 50 degree sunny day blossoming. But the weather channel had warned and re-warned me of what lay ahead. After only an hour on the road, 40 mile-an-hour winds were huffing and gusting to 60 and were pushing hard at a perfect right angle to I-10. The big rigs were actually slowing down and I am not one to ignore road veterans, even when the posted speed limit is a tantalizing 80 mph. Out there in west Texas the tumbleweed gets a real workout in such weather, for about an hour the interstate resembled Tim Burton directed game of Frogger.

Road hour three began with a lite grey horizon and the steady advance of the moisture. Whether it was my 70ish mph western progress or the 30+ mph crawl of the storm, a confrontation was coming. I pondered just how my personal the "two trains leave the station" thought problem was effected by the 800+ mile an hour rotation of the earth in these latitudes. Physics wizs may weigh in with comments below.

When the rain finally hit around Sierra Blanca; there was no need for intermediate speed wipers. For the next four hours it rained, drizzled, poured, sprinkled and then as I crossed the continental divide and the temperature lowered to 35°, it nearly sleeted. The raindrops got viscous and nearly lumpy on the windshield but the downward altitude slide into western New Mexico brought only more liquid and no white stuff.

Tonight I rest in Willcox, Arizona before heading into Phoenix for the weekend. Here's hoping the predicted snow stays above 4,000 feet for one more night.