Diaries of a Climate Nomad — Texas

Once home, now a temporary port in a raging storm

Russ Linton
The Environment

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Trapped in the past, my home state is running out of time — photo by the author.

“If you don’t like the weather, just wait a minute,” has been the Texas punchline for decades.

Having lived in the state for over twenty years, I can attest to the wild swings in temperature. Every January, I got used to the week where we’d hit 80 degrees Fahrenheit and, overnight, a cold front would rip through plunging us back into freezing temperatures.

I first noticed this pattern while camping with my son’s Cub Scout troop. We were at an orienteering event, sweating it out on a balmy day as we searched the scrubby woodlands for navigational flags.

That evening, the tents were bending low to the ground as a cold front howled outside. By morning, they’d earned their “polar bear” patch — a rare accomplishment for a Texas troop — for spending the night in sub-freezing temperatures.

That was over ten years ago. This month, I’ve experienced that same wild swing three times.

The first was shortly after arriving. An atmospheric river had swallowed the West Coast dumping snow in areas not accustomed to it and absolutely burying higher elevations. Portland and other areas throughout the Pacific Northwest were blanketed and even areas around San Francisco saw a rare dusting.

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Russ Linton
The Environment

Nomad, science fiction author, former cryptocurrency miner, trailblazer. Find out more at https://www.russlinton.com