January through March, 2019

Another purpose of our trip to Seattle was to connect with Gary's first cousin once removed Peggy. They had never met and discovered each other through a DNA match at 23andme.com. It turns out she lives in a Seattle suburb so this was an obvious add-on to a long-planned trip. We had a great visit and vowed to get together again in the future.

The average temperature for February at the Bozeman airport was 9.2°F. That was the average over all the days, not the average high or average low. The expected average daily high and low for February are 35.5°F and 15.3°F, respectively. The actual highs and lows have been 20 to 30 degrees below average. January and February are typically low precipitation months and precipitation increases through June. Unless March and April are warmer or drier than normal, that means even more snow!

The third of March finally saw a sunny day. Gary waded through waist-deep snow in -7°F temperatures to get a picture of the devastation. Starting March with several days of clear weather was the good news; the bad news was the Chronicle headline for 5 March: New lows: Bozeman breaks records for low temperatures. This unusual cold is the result of a weak polar vortex. Lest one think these low temperatures disprove global warming, it actually means the polar area that should be cold is warmer than it should be.

We dug a path to the propane tanks to make sure we are not running low; they are at about 70% capacity, which should be good for a couple of months. We also hired a neighbor with a tractor and snowblower attachment to make room for the snow to come.

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