My cousin, her family, and a couple of her geology field camp colleagues blew threw town last night for some emergency lodging. While their students were all taking break between field camp sessions in Salt Lake City, my cousin and her group had been camping in Moab. They spent Friday night in a crazy wind and sand storm getting very little sleep. Then Saturday, the wind took out a couple of their tents. We were happy to give them refuge.
I don't really remember much wind while I was growing up in Massachusetts. Most of my childhood memories of crazy wind were connected to one particularly wild sail on my uncle's boat on Long Island Sound and battening down the hatches when storms came up at Lake Geneva in Wisconsin. I loved the adrenaline surge, running around making sure boats were safe and that anything loose was stowed away.
But the winds here in Utah are something else! We often have strong canyon winds after the sun sets. If people want patio furniture around here, it has to be either heavy or put away at night. We can also have pretty intense wind storms. Over the years at various homes we've lost fencing, we've lost siding, and we've lost shingles.
I'd never heard of a microburst before living in Utah, but now I've experienced more than one. The most surreal memory I have of being in the middle of a microburst was watching a trampoline blow through the fields a block away, on its side and about 20 feet in the air. I was glad to be tucked away in our solid, brick house.
I think our house guests last night were glad for that, too. And the silver lining? Their student will be reunited with her pillow today.