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Submitted by Tim Buckley on Wed, 06/08/2011 - 8:40am.
Now triple digit heat and snow banks don't typically get along. But in St. Paul, Minnesota - they can sometimes coexist. The heat of summer clashed with a living memory of the bone-chilling and snowy winter yesterday.
Check out this picture from the Pioneer Press in the Twin Cities:
This pile of snow used to be about 60 feet tall. To give you some reference, this is the parking lot of a Sears - presumably in a large shopping mall. In the winter, parking lots can be a painful place for maintenance crews during the winter months as they're tasked with clearing hundreds or even thousands of spaces.
After feet upon feet of snow have fallen - where does it go? Well, into mounds like this of course, which seemingly rise all the way to the sky. In fact, the lots themselves will shrink a great deal in many northern locales as the growing snow pile will consume dozens and sometimes hundreds of spots typically reserved for shoppers.
Snowy Memories of Home
This isn't such a foreign concept to me. I remember monitoring the gigantic snow piles that would grow in the lots of local malls and shopping plazas, watching with wonderment that it could withstand the spring warmth and last into April and May.
Maybe a picture would do it better justice ....
Check THAT out! This was taken in Oswego, New York back in 2008 - about 15 miles away from where I grew up. The city uses this site as a dumping ground for all the snow it collects off the city streets during the winter.
When you get snow every other day, you run out of places to put it. It's not enough for the snow crews to simply go around and plow the snow. Instead, after the roads are plowed - dump trucks are needed to come in and actually haul the snowbanks off of the streets so they can actually be usable.
The result? Snow piles like these that can rise well over that 60 foot mark seen in Minnesota. On average, this pile in Oswego typically melts sometime in early June - but has been rumored to last as late as mid August in an extreme season.
Thankfully that's a problem we need not deal with here. Although I guess we have our share of weather calamities - what with droughts, floods, hurricanes, and tornadoes and all.
That's all for now. Thanks for reading!
By: Tim Buckley