January 23 (1987, 1988)
Bald Eagle Season

1/23/87   Morning; I feel so much better today, it's great, really great. A light snow is falling, and about a quarter-inch is on the ground.

Awoke from a dream in which I was skiing with Kelley; we gazed out over a snowy canyon and climbed icy summit [...]

This is more of a frozen fog than a snowfall; it's about sunrise and there may be swift clearing, or may not: another, larger storm is presumed to be entering the state today, and the one might blend into the other nearly imperceptibly.

Yes, the fog assumes a certain glow that speaks loudly of thinness in the cloud cover; and the winds turn and drive from the east, or the north, indicating that this storm, at any rate, is largely past.

The snow falls heavier rather than lighter, and it may be that another band of clouds has yet to pass over. I have noticed that in between bands of clouds, wind directions often change just as though separate storms were involved, and, to that extent, perhaps one could say that separation does exist; so that a cloud band begins with south winds, then grades into northerlies as it passes... several such bands may inhabit a single storm, a single cyclone may whirl several in succession across the state. Typically the cyclone itself moves across with them; occasionally, it seems to stall, just as the high-pressure anticyclone stalls, and then storm after storm, storm qua cloud-band, sweeps across the state... the post-sunrise increase in snowfall is something I have long attributed to solar warming of the cloud mass, causing uplift and enhanced condensation...”

[Russell Towle's journal]

1/23/88   Morning, cloudy and cool, but promising warmth later, more delightful warmth, warmth which has melted most of the snow from near my cabin over the past few days, sun which has shined so brilliantly, and I have felt so strongly inclined to go up and ski, but, no one to go with. Today is Saturday, and I hope to see Ed & Tina, Bill, Gail & Kenji, who knows. Alex's brother, Paul Henderson, was up yesterday, maybe again today, he's been helping me understand matrix algebra [...]

Later: night: 9:00 o'clock; just returned from a day spent with Bill and Alex & Teri, wherein, by some chance, I had occasion to mention the bald eagle twice, in conversation, with Bill, remarking that in Mexico there are several types of black-and-white hawks and eagles and vultures, the type of whose class found here in California: the bald eagle; while, with Mary Henderson, we touched upon the bald eagle recently discovered in Ireland; and I remarked that up to sixty balds had been counted in the Middle Fork of the Yuba canyon, wintering. Well. One thing leads to another, that to another yet, and now I'm home... I come home and find a note from Kelley, who, with husband John and son Kyle, had visited and picnicked out on the cliffs today. She wrote that a bald eagle was observed. circling over ‘my place‘ for five minutes. So, telepathy?”

[Russell Towle's journal]

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