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'78: The mother of all blizzards
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ztnoo
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2008 4:07 pm    Post subject: '78: The mother of all blizzards Reply with quote

To all you AZ, CA, and FL folks, this will likely mean nothing to you.
But this was the most serious event offered to me personally by Mother Nature in my lifetime.
I got stuck in Angola, IN, about 90 miles north of where I live........and was there for a week. Yes, a whole week.
Everything was shut down, including I-69.
It all boiled down to dealing with it where you were and with what you had.
It was serious, serious business.....trust me.
You warm climate folks don't want to ever see anything like what we lived through here in the midwest in January 1978.
http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080126/LOCAL/801260461
Dean Kruse of Kruse International in Auburn is part of the story in the above link.
He was lucky to survive the ordeal.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2008 4:29 pm    Post subject: Re: '78: The mother of all blizzards Reply with quote

ztnoo wrote:

You warm climate folks don't want to ever see anything like what we lived through here in the midwest in January 1978.


It must have been bad if you are just finding your way home to post about it now.
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ztnoo
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2008 4:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well.........today is the 30 year anniversary of this monumental event........for those who survived and still live to relate the epic struggle.
Wink
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2008 4:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I remember it well. I spent two days stuck inside Chicago Union Station because of it. It hit so fast that I drove a friend down to catch a train as it was just starting to snow, and two hours later when her train finally left, the roads were completely closed down, it was almost zero visibility, and my old VW Thing was in a snow drift so big you couldn't make out the shape of the car. I didn't get it dug out until the next week.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2008 4:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Around here, they called out the National Guard with their all wheel drives. and Half tracks to recue stranded motorist.
They also called on the dune buggy guys to help, because they could basically drive over the drifts.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2008 4:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Got stuck on the Ohio Turnpike, in my brand new 1978 Westfalia! Didn't realise they had shut it down. I was young and stupid, it was quite an adventure!

Jumpin' Jeebus on a pogo stick... 1978 WAS 30 years ago! Shocked
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2008 7:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My Dad drove his '63 ragtop to the grocery store for alot of the neighbors. His was the only car in our neighborhood able to get through the drifts. He had chevy rims with white wall snow tires on it. It was just like a sled. The front wheels were off the ground and the rears just kept on pushing.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2008 7:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Remember the winter of 77-78 very well. Even worse was the snow storm of 1967.....remember that one?

'67 was a b!tch due to all the lake effect snow we got here in Michigan.....nothing moved except end-loaders, and they weren't all the great back then Laughing
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2008 8:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

78 was big snow for us here on the east coast too. i was but a wee lad back then but i remember there was no school!!!!
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Tram
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2008 10:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

obus wrote:
78 was big snow for us here on the east coast too. i was but a wee lad back then but i remember there was no school!!!!


You guys got it twice- You got the remnants of the Jan. 26th storm, then you got a big one in Feb. IIRC, about a week later.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2008 6:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tram wrote:
obus wrote:
78 was big snow for us here on the east coast too. i was but a wee lad back then but i remember there was no school!!!!


You guys got it twice- You got the remnants of the Jan. 26th storm, then you got a big one in Feb. IIRC, about a week later.


I was 15 at the time and made lots of money shoveling. If I remember right the Feb. storm was worse than Jan.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2008 6:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Feb was the one i remember. it was a doozy! I am glad we don't get that much snow like that anymore. my back is too cranky for that crap!
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2008 1:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ironically enough, went to bed last night here in the Eugene, Or. area with pouring down rain, and during the night it turned to snow. It almost never snows here- a dusting once a year if we're lucky. We've got 4 or 5 inches on the ground now, and it's still coming pretty heavy- about as much snow as I've ever seen in the ten years I've been here... and on the 30th anniversary weekend of The Big One that I went through back in Ohio. Laughing Pretty cool- Pun intended.

Some facts about the '78 storm:

" A storm of unprecedented magnitude . . . that's what the National Weather Service terms the blizzard, which whipped Ohio last month. What occurred on January 26th, 1978 in Ohio was not a blizzard. What did occur was even rarer and even more dangerous: a severe blizzard . . . the worst of winter storms.

The National Weather Service defines a "severe blizzard" as a storm with winds of 45 miles per hour or greater; a great density of falling or blowing snow; and temperatures of 10 degrees or less.

In fact, winds gusted to more than 100 miles per hour over much of the state, with sustained winds in the 45-60 mph range. Record snowfalls were recorded in many areas and all-time low barometric pressure records were shattered as the intense storm whipped the state . . . The Blizzard of 1978 was, in fact, the worst storm to ever occur in Ohio."

As the storm passed over Cleveland, the lowest barometric pressure in history in the United States was recorded that wasn't during a Category 4 or 5 hurricane.

Good times. Very Happy
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2008 2:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We had a power transformer blow up in our backyard. Trees, the telephone pole and the wire insulation burned for hours. We called the fire department, they told us to "let it burn and stay away, it's not going to spread"

We cooked on our grill, and ran a fire in the fireplace. I just remember my milk froze and everything was cold.

I remember snow up to my waist, I couldn't shovel, because there was no where to put it... Smile

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2008 2:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I remember it well, watching it pile up in our front lawn.
Also remember everyone walking down hwy 51, the main drag in our small town.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2008 3:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

1978 ? I remember it well, the year I graduated High School,I was working at a local Restaurant , tried to drive home & my '69 Dodge Charger would'nt make the hills, so I went back to work, worked the Dinner shift, the owner & I stayed at the Chefs place,we got there just after they closed the roads,it was sssnowing inside, as well as out.... Cool Those were the Daze.....
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blankmange
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2008 3:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

winter of 1978 - lived in Hawaii.... didn't notice any snow....
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ach60 Premium Member
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2008 1:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The 2nd day of that storm we needed supplies.
My Brother's '72 Super sitting in the street with my Mother's car buried in the driveway with a dead battery,
blocking my '73 Squareback.
The '72 had not been started or moved since Christmas because the brakes where bad.
I went out the '72 thinking if it doesn't start, I'll pull the battery out of the Square to get it started.
So I get in the car and it starts right off. I leave it running and dig a bit to unbury it from all the plowed snow.
I drove down to the store which was only open because the owners lived above it and got what we needed.
I remember my Mother told me not to horde anything,
and on the way home I remember thing how there was absolutely NOBODY on the streets, and how ungodly COLD it was.
I think the windchill was -40 something!
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2008 8:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

we had moved from indiana to arkansas summer of 77 so we missed it.
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2008 10:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I remember it well.
Was on vacation that week.
Was supposed to fly to Dallas but the airport there was closed because of the beginnings of that blizzard.

Lived down the road from a gravel pit back then.
Helped push snow on the county roads in a front end loader for almost 2 weeks.
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