Hurricane Irene Headaches

It’s been a week since Hurricane Irene hammered New England as a tropical storm, and a lot has been written about the storm’s impact. So many people have suffered. In Connecticut there are still people without electrical power for the eighth day. Hopefully this is a sad but necessary wake up call to improve Connecticut’s electrical infrastructure. Years of neglect and underinvestment have left us with one of the weakest grids in the nation. At Horst Engineering, we had a power outage last Monday and the first half of Tuesday, we sent most of our employees home, and we thought that was a setback.

With the month ending, a four-day work week coming, and numbers to meet; we were concerned. However, that impact is nothing compared to the devastation wrought upon people elsewhere in the region. Vermont and New Hampshire were the hardest hit areas. The torrential rain induced flooding caused the most devastation. Debbie and I saw the aftermath up close this past weekend when we traveled to the White Mountains of New Hampshire. Roads are closed all over Vermont and New Hampshire. Route 302, Route 112 (Kancamagus Highway), and Pinkham B Road/Dolly Copp Road were all closed because of washed out bridges. Roads were undermined. Trails were turned into streams.

As natural disasters go, Irene was a significant one for New England. The winter of 2010-2011 was challenging for us and this summer’s weather pattern has been difficult too. We had the wettest August on record and September has started off the same way. On our drive back from New Hampshire/Vermont, we experienced more tropical weather in the form of torrential rain. The waterlogged ground and streams can’t take any more moisture. The people of New England are resilient, but it doesn’t make the suffering any more palatable.

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Little D passed her second of three #taekwondo #blackbelt tests. The third, and biggest, is in October. #tkd #sunset #md90 🌞✈️ #echoamphitheater #carsonnationalforest #newmexico Stopping to stretch our legs and use the potty was the best $2 I've spent in a while. I even borrowed a nickel from @trailrunningmom and got rid of the 95 cents in my pocket. Amazing #durango #colorado trails. These are the #HorseGulchTrails near @fortlewiscollege which has an amazing #cycling culture. When I raced collegiates @bcclubcycling & @bucycling in the early 90's, it wasn't anything like what's happening with the powerhouse @flccycling team. What an amazing backyard. Imagine rolling out of your dorm and onto this landscape. I would never go to class! Don't tell my kids I said that! #mountainbiking #cyclocross #teamhorstsports #teamhorstjuniorsquad #horstspikes 🚵‍♀️ @trailrunningmom finished in 41 hours and 1 minute. #hr100 #hardrock100 #shenipsitstriders #teamhorstsports #trailrunning #ultrarunning #womenofultrarunning @trailrunningmom  at the #hr100 #womenofultrarunning @trailrunningmom  at the #hr100 #womenofultrarunning @trailrunningmom left the Chapman Aid Station at 2:10 P.M. I paced her from Ouray (56.6 miles) to Chapman (82.2 miles). @ultramarathondan will take her to the finish of the @hardrock100 #hr100 #hardrock100 Most importantly, she is in good spirits and despite the altitude, is moving OK on the climbs, albeit slowly. As for the descents, her legs are trashed but she is still bombing them. Finish could be in the 40-42 hour range if all goes well. Who knows? Lots of variables! Fingers crossed. I have tons of photos to go through, so I selected one of our crew with Deb as she headed out for the final 18 miles. #trailrunning #ultrarunning #shenipsitstriders #teamhorstsports We finally reconnected with @trailrunningmom She arrived at Grouse Gulch, 42.2 miles at 8:33pm and departed at 8:50pm. She was soaked to the bone after climbing her first ever 14,000 foot peak. Handies had lots of hail and rain. She changed every piece of clothing and shoes and felt much better. The drive to/from was white knuckle insanity with our rental. @ultramarathondan is with her now. It will be a long night. I'll see her in Ouray. Our kids  have been awesome. Mom just wants to finish, but a long way to go. @hardrock100 #hr100 #hardrock100 #trailrunning #ultrarunning 🏃🏻⛰

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