When a winter storm makes it’s way past the barrier of the San Ysidro Mountains, it does so by way of wind. You can usually hear the storm advancing long before there is much in the way of clouds. If the storm is powerful enough and the clouds heavy with water, rain will be dropped on the dry side of the mountain. If not, the desert will just embrace the wind and the wind will send the sand flying in all directions, making it difficult for birds to fly, road runners to run and coyotes to hunt. Anza- Borrego Desert State Park has had a very dry winter so far, so I am hoping for a little rain.
First thing this morning, I awoke to the roar of wind through the olive trees and watched as the tall Mexican Palm trees danced and twirled while being anchored in one place. Cloud shadows raced along the sides of the mountains and the foothills at the base, which then glowed with molten light as the sun rose in the east. Callie loves to climb the olive trees when there is a storm developing, and gets a kick out of being tossed around while surveying her view of the desert.
This storm has produced dramatic light and shadow, but very little rainfall so far. Another storm was predicted in a couple of days, but I can already see that that storm too has given up its punch and fizzled out. It takes a really strong and powerful storm to push its way past the mountains, that is why it is called a desert. Rainfall has trouble getting over to the other side!
The wind also makes it next to impossible to cycle in. At the very least, you have to work so hard to push forward with any momentum, and I always worry about getting sand in my eyes. As a high schooler, I use to bike to school, and one day during a particularly strong Santa Ana wind, I actually scratched the inside of my eyelid and it took months for me to recover from the pain and discomfort.
Today will be a day of writing and I will be reading indoors, so I am appreciative that I was able to capture the photographs that I did at sunrise. Now I can write and share with my viewers, the beautiful cloud shadows and Callie climbing her beloved olive trees. Every morning she attempts a dash up at least one of the trees before going back to sleep for a nice long nap.