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Summer arrived yesterday! After a long and quite cold spring, summer popped in yesterday with highs in the low 70’s. It has continued on today with our high of 75 degrees. It is sunny and there is a nice breeze. Predictions are for warm weather to continue on for a while with most days’ highs in the upper 60’s. We’ve kept all three doors wide open for most of the past two days to air the house and keep it a bit cooler.
Sunrise today was at 5:05 a.m. and sunset will be at 11:01 p.m. giving us 17 hours, 53 minutes, 49 seconds of daylight. That is a gain of 4 minutes, 29 seconds over yesterday. The difference in daylight accumulation is beginning to shorten from almost 6 minutes a day down to 4 minutes and soon just to a minute or a few seconds as we reach the summer solstice on June 21.
Yesterday’s State extremes were at Talkeetna (tall keet na) with 73 degrees and 18 degrees for Denali National Park which isn’t really very far away from Talkeetna. Talkeetna is where the mountaineers who plan on climbing Mt. McKinley meet to be flown to the base camp up on the mountain.
The swallows finally arrived and took up residence in our swallow houses. They really help keep the bug population down and fewer mosquitoes are a blessing. They’ll soon be parenting new babies and within just a few weeks after that they will leave and head south. They are usually gone before the first of August.
There are several forest fires burning around the state including one about 15 miles south of us. That one is at 67 acres. With less snowfall this past year than normal, the ground is very dry. We’ve not had but a few sprinkles and just a bit of rain since breakup. Overall, the state is a tender box.
A man from the Alaska Dept. of Forestry was over yesterday to give us some information about making a defensible property area around our house. Several trees need to come down and others need to be limbed up to about 9 feet. That will all be done this summer. Other than that, everything was fine and overall nothing really major needs to be done. My husband does an excellent job of fertilizing and watering the spruce, so very few were attacked by the spruce beetle. He also keeps the yard looking nice and trimmed. The dead spruce trees around the state are causing the forest fires to spread so quickly. None of our trees are dead wood, yet, so we are going to take down those that need it before we get into the dry, dead wood stage.
I’ve been going through some cookbooks for grilling. There are some good recipes I’d like to try this summer, IF it stays nice. I do admit to being a fair weather person. If the weather isn’t to my liking, I stay indoors. But, hopefully we will be able to have a few meals out-of-doors this summer while it is daylight, warm, not too windy, and the mosquitoes aren’t bothersome. Somewhere I have that list of natural mosquito repellents.
Well, that is about all for tonight. Take care. Till next time…