You can start a conversation with any stranger at any location in the U.S.(maybe in the world) with those two simple words. What mother nature deals to us on a daily basis is an endless source of fascination.
Weather on the Allagash River is even more interesting. After 20 years of semi-regular spring canoe trips I can still be shocked.
The Commander and I try to plan these trips for the sweet spot between ice-out and full-on blackfly season — another weather phenomenon. Most of our excursions have occurred
just a week or so before Memorial Day Weekend. This year was no different. In fact we planned to end the trip and drive south on Memorial Day.
We always advise guests on these trips to pack clothing for temperatures in the 30’s and temperatures in the 80’s. Over the years this tip has proven to be sound advice.
One year we swam in the river almost every day to cool off and wash away the sting of
multiple bug bites. On other years we have worn nearly every stitch of clothing in our gear bags in an effort to stay warm. Sometimes we joke that we started with five pounds of ice in the cooler and ended the trip with eight pounds. A true story — because we have often supplemented the ice supply from river-side ice bergs left behind by spring floodwaters.
But until last week we had never awoken to find a measurable amount of snow on the ground. That’s a first for us.
A little bit north of our campsite at Michaud Farm there was a full two inches of snow on the green grass lawn that extends down to the river’s edge. It was gone from everywhere except the shaded areas upon our arrival — but the Ranger confirmed the sighting.
This all came back to me yesterday -exactly one week after these snowy photos were taken. I was sweating profusely in muggy 90 degree heat as I mowed my lawn here in Farmington.