Friday, June 15, 2007

Woe Betide the Heat Weenies

Redding, California is a nice place to live, especially if you like outdoor activities. It's no cultural hotspot, but with the Turtle Bay Exploration Park, two symphony orchestras, and the restored art deco Cascade Theater, it ain't exactly a cultural desert either.

I've enjoyed living here, but everyone choosing to live in the area pays the piper come summertime. It gets HOT. Many summer days aren't too bad--mid and high nineties--but we get perhaps 15 days per summer with temps reaching 105 or more. There is something to that "dry heat" idea; I can attest as much from my years of working in south Louisiana, where the humidity can stick to you like pancake syrup. But hey, when it gets to 105 degrees or more, it's just freakin' HOT, and that "dry heat" notion is scant comfort.

The heat here may very well be a blessing in disguise: I sometimes suspect we'd have a million people living here if not for those triple-digit days. Y'see, we have a couple of wonderful lakes here, Shasta and Whiskeytown. Mount Lassen National Park is but an hour away, as is the Mount Shasta Ski Park. (For climbers, there's also the lure of Mount Shasta itself.) You'll see fly fishermen casting along the Sacramento River right in the Redding city limits, and the nearby Russian and Trinity Alps Wildernesses beckon campers and backpackers.

If I'm sounding like a real estate agent casting about for out-of-the-area equity, stand by: no matter how much a person might feel drawn to this area's outdoor recreation opportunities, if he or she is a heat weenie, he or she ain't gonna make it.

We've already seen triple-digits, with the first day of summer still a week away. The average high for yesterday's date is 90 degrees, and the average low is 59 degrees. Yesterday, though, the temp reached 101 in Redding, and as I write this at 1:30 a.m., it's still 84 degrees in town. (It's 74 in the foothills above town where we live. Living off of the valley floor has its benefits.)

According to the Weather Channel website, the forecast is for a high of 100 degrees again tomorrow. This year, the annual heat weenie exodus may commence early.


Bob Devlin said...

Wow, that is hot. And I agree, hot is HOT, dry or not.

It looks like a beautiful area, Hal. No wonder you like it.

Redlefty said...

Very nice place to be! Glad you're out of town and higher up, too.

David said...

As a registered cold weenie, gimme the heat! Dry or not.
Let them flee.
We haven't hit 100 yet. Suprised ya'll beat us to it.

Hal Johnson said...

David, it seems like Redding has the high temps for the nation one or two days a year. If the wind goes through the mountain passes just right, it compresses, heats, and the next thing ya know, we get a brief mention on the 11 o'clock news.

Algernon said...

I get a weird insulation from the heat, because I work in an office with people who aren't comfortable unless the room is freezing cold. It's almost July in L.A., and I have to bring a sweater to work. You could preserve food on my desk.