Sunday, February 21, 2010

Hunger Hill!... blizzard 21-02-2010

Blizzard.... (c) 2010

Nothing to eat on "Hunger Hill" (c) 2010

WhiteOut!! (c) 2010

The "Long Wall" (c) 2010

Base camp today! (c) 2010
SE F1, -2degC, 100m, 9ok, Heavy snow, QNH c990 steady
0830 - 0930hr / 1230 - 1430hr
A negative morning of dramatic conditions with further fresh snow from first thing adding a further 100mm to the pre-existing 50... giving a total of c 150mm at this altitude. As the morning progresssed the temperature began to rise and the fogs formed together with a ceasation of snow. Home for a spell then back to the post.... No birds seen but grand to be out nevertheless! The water is c 99% frozen and snow covered again, just when we thought it was improving.

Contrail Vis... AirNav Radarbox... test 20-02-2010

Polar Diagramme.... Oxenhope Coverage (c) 2010

For AirNav RadarBox freaks and those into contrail photography an experiment today....

This afternoon was phenominal, in probing the skies!... all part of the holistic interest. The coverage is magnificant from above the watchpoint... just as it would be from anywhere with a good outlook high in the Pennines... from Scotland up to the the northern Isles, across to the western Isles into northern Ireland, south down the Irish coast across into central Wales... down into France... round the Channel and just into the Low Countries, then back from north Holland and back up to the northern Isles..... on some occasions at one time I was self tracking upto 106 aircraft.... and Saturday afternoon is a very quiet time in the skies!! generally the tally at any one time did not fall below c85... Lots of new airlines / crafts but dident scope in the skies for anything today as you could both see them on the radar and hear them over head at the same time... confirming that the coordiantes now in the software are set up, correct and ready for next time!... nothing exceptional came over.

Here is a screen shot of the impressive polar diagramme of coverage from up there... and was generated in just c 2.5hrs 1415 - 1645hr . All in all in that period I self tracked and logged a diverse selection of c 450 aircraft over the whole of the coverage area...



Stainburn Moor, Harrogate... 20-02-2010

Stainburn Moor, Harrogate (N Yorks, England)
Saturday 20 February 2010
Counting period: 8:08-11:15
Weather: 0 oktas 0 wind at first rising to F1 SW later. -2 celsius rising to 4
Observers: Andrew Hanby

Moving Birds:
Greylag Goose - 11
Skylark - 7
Sparrowhawk - 2
Meadow Pipit - 5
Curlew - 5
Fieldfare - 3
Herring Gull - 49
Goldfinch - 19
Great Black-backed Gull 4 -
Siskin - 3

Totals: 108 individuals, 10 species, 3:07 hours

Present: Common Buzzard 3, Golden Plover 1, Lapwing 65, Black-headed Gull 10, Common Gull 250, Stock Dove 3, Fieldfare 15, Mistle Thrush 1, Long-tailed Tit 2, Willow Tit 1, Blue Tit 3, Great Tit 2, Magpie 9, Jackdaw 25, Rook 200, Carrion Crow 3, Starling 106, Chaffinch 5

Comments: The star Bird of the day was a Willow Tit. It came along the hedge with a blue tit and then hung around the gap where we stand for about 10 minutes. I expected it to be a Marsh tit (though I've seen neither here) but when I saw its mucky bib and wing panel I realised it could well be a Willow. This is now a very rare bird inthis area and I haven't seen one since a migrant at Spurn about 7 years ago Naturally I was cautious- but then it started singing and continued to sing for a good 6 minutes on and off- quite diagnostic - a repeated pseu with occasional sounds slightly reminiscent of coal tit or even tree pipit. An identical song is on the Canto bird sound web site from a bird in Sweden. My bet is that his was a continental bird not a local. Tits were in more evidence in general along the hedge. Other Highlights included and increase in Curlew and a pair of Hen Harriers. Big Gulls were going in two distinct stream- one ESE to WNW/W the other NNE. There was a noticeable increase in Magpies.

Andrew Hanby