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About RDM

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  • Four Letter Airport Code For Weather Obs (Such as KDCA)
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  • Location:
    Just NW of Vienna, VA. Elevation 375' ASL
  1. April Banter

    Haha - Probably had problems with funding back then as well. Just as with the Silver Line and Metro as a whole... On the Metro, can you imagine if the benefit to the region if they put in a ring line on the Metro? Anything that would relieve the number of bridge crossings for the collective masses commuting across the Potomac would be a stark improvement. (no intent to open up the proverbial Pandora's Box here). In an effort to help out, I did send some feedback on their typo form. Not holding my breath for a response. Back in the "good ole days" the proof readers would have caught it. If not them, the typesetters for sure. Heaven forbid it even got that far. In today's electronic age, everyone is empowered yet accountability is muted.
  2. April Banter

    Did anyone see the article on Accuweather.com about the latest dates of recorded snow in various cities? Gotta love the part about the system that brought measurable snow to IAD on 28 April, 1898 - a full 5 years before the Wright Bros flew at Kitty Hawk (I'm from Dayton, Oh btw). Hard to imagine such a snafu gets by even cursory editing... From Accuweather.com - https://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/when-is-the-latest-snowfall-for-these-major-us-cities/70004752 "Since official record keeping began however, the latest measurable snowfall has occurred on April 28, 1898, when 0.5 of an inch of snow fell. While the same system also brought snow to both Washington-Dulles Airport and the city of Baltimore, it is interesting to note that Washington-Dulles later received an inch of snow on April 12, 1973, while downtown Washington and Baltimore received less than 0.1 of an inch.
  3. April Mid/Long Range & Disco

    All that's needed after this season is a snowflake instead of a football. As in, we barely saw any (ok - an exaggeration for some, but...). Guess there's always next season just like with the football...
  4. April Discobs Thread

    Interesting experience driving back to NVA from Williamsburg today. Was mid 70's downtown Williamsburg around 1pm. Got up to 79 just west of town near the outlet stores on Richmond Hwy. Hit rain on 64 about half way between Williamsburg and Richmond after having to bypass an accident that closed WB 64 (why on earth VDOT does not make 64 3 lanes each way is beyond logic). Ran into a downpour just before approaching the 295 by-pass and temp dropped to low 50's... Stayed there until we got on 95NB. 95 was stop and go all the way north through Fredericksburg and beyond to just before the start of the HOV. (sigh...) By then temps were upper 40's and was 42 upon arrival at home in Vienna. Factoring in the mid 80's in Williamsburg yesterday, was nearly a 45 degree drop. That's impressive by any standards.
  5. April Banter

    Cobalt said "My dad has skiied in the Alps several times, and he's said it's unlike anything else in N. America. He wants to take me to Chamonix when I'm experienced enough, and from what I've seen on videos and such, the Alps are pretty sweet." Cobalt, Indeed, go if you get a chance. And it's a good idea to get good first. At least good by American standards because "good" here will just get you buy there. My family had an exchange student from Switzerland when I was in HS and again in college. She's still like a sister to me and through here I met all kinds of great people. Her dad (Hans) drove the cog train on "The Glacier Express" for a career. Look up the Glacier Express. That's one of the most memorable train experiences on earth and a pilgrimage for train enthusiasts. I used to sit in front with Hans when going to Zermatt to ski for the weekend when I lived in Frankfurt, Germany. It was too good to be true. Didn't save much money my first time living in Germany, but I skied like crazy and have priceless memories. Chamonix is right up there. If your dad skied Chamonix I am sure he has lots of stories, especially if he had good weather. In Val d'Isere (a couple hours from Chamonix) there are over 200 lifts. You can ski there for a week and still not take all the lifts in the entire resort. Verbier, Switzerland has a cable car that holds 200 people going up to the top of Mont. Fort. The view to the west over lake Geneva and eastern France is breathtaking. Should have see the looks on the Swiss' faces when we started singing the Beverly Hillbilly's, Gilligan's Island tunes on the cable car... Le Diablertes has a great glacier and the glacier in Hintertux, Austria is where the European ski teams practice in the summer. It's more challenging in the summer than many US slopes in Winter. Then there is Saas Fee - like Zermatt there's no cars allowed in town. Crans Montana, St. Moritz, Davos, and those are just a few off the top of my head. Many folks talk about Garmish Partenkirchen. Popular place for Americans and on a clear day a decent view over Bavaria. But still does not compare to Zermatt or Chamonix as far as ski-able terrain goes. If you get lucky and go to Zermatt and to to the top of the Klein Matterhorn (the Little Matterhorn) the view of the Matterhorn and to the South into Italy is unbelievable - from 13,800' asl. Get up there on a clear day you'll never forget it the rest of your life. Hope you have a chance to get over there soon.
  6. April Banter

    wxdude64 said " I'm pretty sure you can basically ski where you want at A Basin, especially the 'East Wall' without them throwing a conniption fit like most places. Another that comes to mind is Jay Peak up in VT, course you get 'lost' and have to be helped out, THEN it becomes a different matter...... " dude64 - yes, have some friends out west who love A Basin. Never had the chance to ski there myself. Most of my experience was in the Alps, Japan and East Coast US (plus a long vacation on the S. Island in NZ Heli-skiing - that was fantastic). Used to go to Seven Springs a lot with a group of telemark skiers - they were a great group to hang out with. Had some occasional "interesting" discussions with the ski patrol at 7sp who didn't like us going in the trees. They didn't like much of anything anyone did who wasn't a ski patrol. Had a real clique going on there. Not like many resorts where the patrol is respected and rightfully so. The patrol threatened to punch our tickets for a variety of reasons, including creating an avalanche danger - haha - avalanche danger at 7sp? The owner of 7sp being from Europe thought the concept was silly and told the patrol to back off. In Europe you can essentially ski anyplace you want. However, if you get injured off piste you better have good insurance or crawl back to the trail somehow. Otherwise, it's gonna be very expensive for you to be taken off the hill. Especially if they have to use a chopper. About the only exceptions to free run of the terrain is in specially designated forests above villages/towns that are off limits to everyone given their special status for avalanche protection, where avalanches are a real threat. Overall the average relief of the terrain in the Alps is much more stark that in the US. In the Rockies if you go down in the valleys you are still at 6, 7 or 8000 feet asl. If you go down in the valleys in the Alps you are at an altitude of a couple thousand feet asl or less as is the case in Canton Valais in southern Switzerland. Likewise, the apres-ski cusine and overall experience is amazing - on the trails and off...
  7. April Discobs Thread

    Cobalt - if you are looking for vertical, go to the Alps. Several places there you can ski more than 2x the max vertical of anyplace in N. America. Jackson Hole or Whistler-Backcomb vie for the most vertical in N. America at just over 4000 feet. In Zermatt, you can ski over 8500' of vertical in one run. Go to the top, ski to town, and repeat and that's an entire day and a hard day at that. And.... you can ski anywhere you want. None of this "you ski off-piste and we'll punch your ticket and/or prosecute you" BS like in the US. I used to be an avid back-country tele-mark skier and anyone who really enjoys vertical needs to experience the Alps. Back on topic - am in Williamsburg today. What a big difference 24 hours and a little latitude will make. Mid-80's here yesterday and an ideal evening for outdoor dining. 60's today and the backdoor. Down here the pollen yesterday was unreal. In 3 hours our freshly washed car looked like Earl Shibe had given it his special paint job...
  8. April Banter

    On this property tax thing... Anyone with anything here in the Bal/Was metro area pays for it, no matter what they own (or the bank owns). That said, on a percentage basis it's interesting to note the folks in my small home town of 6000 in west central Ohio pay more than I do living in FFCO (again, on a percentage basis). If I had the same value of home back in Ohio I have here, I'd pay about 30-40% more in property tax. Of course the houses in my home town are of nowhere near the value of around here for a comparable dwelling. What's really interest is to look at the tax scale some of our area, especially on the homes on the upper end of the scale in one NVA county (and I assume what's outlined in the following sentences may be a wide-spread practice). There was a report done recently about the cut many higher end homeowners get in that county. Talking about homes in the $3-5M range and up (and that's not me!). On a percentage basis there's a ton of homeowners who've challenged their tax assessment and in turn received a nice hefty reduction. It's typically done by homeowners just after they make a purchase and is one of those things nobody likes to talk about, but has gone on for a long time. Here's how it works... About the only time the tax assessors really look at a property is in conjunction with the sale and/or if you pull a permit for an improvement. So the new homeowners wait for their first assessment after buying a house. Then they call the county and challenge the assessment pointing out all the issues with the home etc. The county says, "we don't want to make waves with Harry Homeowner because he owns a $5M house and must know powerful people" so they knock some off the assessment. There's a lot of homes in that county in the upper range that pay equal or less taxes than other homes of a much lesser value because of this racket. (examples were given in the report). Another thing that gets a gold star for incompetence is the way they go about doing assessments. Case in point. We put up a second garage a few years ago. FFCO tried to assess the shop on the upper floor as full up living space. Living space, garage space, and a shop are all assesses at a different value. And the difference between living and shop space is substantial (although I don't know what the % difference is). After the project was completed and we'd passed the final inspection FFCO called with our new assessment and some questions. The new assessment seemed way too high for a garage and small shop. I asked them if they actually looked inside when they drove by? No, they didn't... So I invited the assessor back out for a tour. She walked in and immediately said "this is a shop". duh! I had tried to explain that on the phone. But just because the shop does not look like a shop from the street, she was reluctant to take my word for it. (we didn't want a shop that looks like a shop and create an eyesore for our own property and lower everyone else's value too) She ended up apologizing and making the appropriate changes which dramatically changed our assessment and taxes. The experience drove home the point of not accepting the status quo. Challenge things that most in mainstream society assume are set in stone and beyond reproach. If I hadn't, we'd be paying a couple thousand more a year for living space we don't actually have. Forgive the long diatribe, but hope this is of use to someone...
  9. April Banter

    Sometimes the best things are said with the least words. Well done Showme. Textbook example of "Less is More" and for a needy cause. The incoherent babble from VR is a waste of video cache to display. May have to look into that ignore option...
  10. April 7-8 snow event

    Front just went through here. Winds picked up for a few mins and temps started to drop. Was 64F a few mins ago and now "down" to 59. Geeze what a train wreck...
  11. April 7-8 snow event

    I'm sort of partial to "Euro-excrement" It just oozes out and no matter how you polish a tu$d it still stinks to high heaven.
  12. April Mid/Long Range & Disco

    Posted 29 minutes ago No doubt the herd mentality is a factor in the solutions ( tropical season was proof of that) but herd or no herd the model " thinks " it could snow down there and actually it's been showing that possibility for several runs ..it's just this latest ensemble run that really added more hits. I personally believe the big hits down there are extreme long shots but reading thru my Ludlum books ..the south has gotten accumulating snow in April several times in the last couple hundred years and it will happen again. With the reference in bold to several hundred years, wonder how many of those individual events correlate to some of the occasional global spikes induced by volcanic activity. For instance 1816, the oft quoted "year without a summer" caused by the eruption of Tambora in 1815. No intent at all to open the global climate can of worms (the least of my intentions). Just curious about the correlations that maybe help explain some of the rarer events, like the concept of sn in the south in April.
  13. Pretty incredible moisture fetch off OBX. And the off-shore lightening is summer-like. SST's must be warm still. Looks like the radar at Norfolk is out. The precip shield truncates off in a straight w/e line. That or there's something amiss with the radar collage. Would be interesting to see how the fetch is wrapping around and feeding what is moving across eastern shore and up through the M/D.
  14. Just NW of Vienna,... (for you on cell phones) After being at 29 for the last 5-6 hours, we just bumped up to 30. dp is at 29. Precip hasn't stopped entirely since it started raining this morning. The drz waned in the mid/late afternoon, but it never stopped entirely. Added what's to come, when was the last time we had any sort of precip for nearly 48hrs non-stop w/o interruption? This is indeed a rare bird for a multitude of reasons. That inbound bow from the SW is wicked. NWS put up some SWS (Special Weather Stmts) along the line.
  15. Congrats PSU. From the looks of the drift on the roof of the garage you had some decent wind today. Yes? Seen wind mentioned a couple of times for tomorrow - 20-25kts. That could make things even more interesting. Especially on the roads. The various DOTs will be even more challenged to keep up.