2007-06-02 05:06:12.000 – Kyle Paddleford, Meteorologist
My new friend
The summit is known for having to use robust equipment to measure and record all different types of weather that occurs up here. More often than not, the latest and greatest technology simply cannot sustain a severe beating from the worst weather in the world. Sometimes the phrase, “they just don’t make them like they used to” comes to mind. I was thinking about this phrase overnight as I stumbled upon a relic in the kitchen. It was a hand cranking coffee bean grinder. Ok, so this may not have anything to do with the extreme weather that Mount Washington experiences, but it has been built strong and stood the test of time much like everything else here on the summit. I bet it will continue to outlast the fancy battery powered ones of today. Not to mention that you never need batteries to use it, just an arm or two.
This contraption and I have become close over the past few nights as I have been working the night shift while Jon Cotton is enjoying a well deserved vacation. Since shift change on Wednesday the summit has been in a heavy thick fog with occasional wind driven rain. The weather observations take longer because your eyes need time to adjust to the darkness. Stepping out onto the observation deck into the darkness every hour with low visibility and only the sound of the wind is a little spooky at times. It is even worse venturing out to the precipitation can in the middle of the summit. It could just be my brain playing tricks on me, but I always get the feeling that someone or something is watching. I’ve heard all the ghost stories and will admit that I am a skeptic, but it is a whole lot nicer taking observations during the daytime hours. It is nice to work at night and to get a feel for the differences between the two shifts, but I think that I will stick to days when I can.
Kyle Paddleford, Meteorologist