Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Record heat

The rough surf on Hatteras Island reveals a shipwrecked barge from 1933. ValleyWX Pic

Lots to talk about on this Wednesday morning both here in North Carolina and at home in Montreal. First in Montreal, another record setting hot day is on tap before a backdoor cold front slices across the St. Lawrence Valley dropping temperatures by at least 10 degrees. yesterday Montreal reached 32C while Ottawa was 33C with a heat index of over 40C. Ottawa Hydro and Hydro 1 in Ontario are asking consumers to conserve power where possible. Meanwhile in Quebec the high heat and dry weather has elevated concerns about forest fires both in Montreal and across southern and central Quebec. Any outdoor burning is now prohibited until further notice by the provincial government.

Here in North Carolina on Hatteras Island the surf put on quite a show yesterday. Waves were running 4-7 feet with the beach virtually disappearing at high tide (photo 2). Some showers occurred as well with gusty northeast winds up to 30mph. The low pressure area causing this rough surf was located about 250 miles southeast of Cape Lookout. It generated enough interest to have The Weather Channel's Mike Seidel broadcast from Buxton this morning. The system will begin to move back out to sea with improving and warming conditions along the coast later today. Yesterday just at the end of our street along the beachfront, the rough surf uncovered the Flambeau wreck (named for the road it sits near). This is an iron and wood barge believed to have been grounded during a storm in 1933. I took photos in the morning when just a few metal bolts were visible (top photo), by the end of the day the entire outline of the barge was showing (photo 2). I am off this morning to see how much more is now visible.

More Outer Banks excitement yesterday as one of the ferries that runs between Ocracoke and Hatteras Island ran aground on a shoal in Hatteras Inlet and had to be towed off it. We have been on these boats dozens of times without incident but noticed on the weekend that they were having trouble with the narrowing channel. There were 27 vehicles and 45 passengers on board, but no injuries were reported. (See complete story here).

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