A massive high pressure system continues to blanket our region. On the weather radio’s current conditions report, station after station lists as “calm.” The few that report wind list around 4 knots (less than 5 mph). Our weather is clear and warm for the season, but with the calm winds, we’re conserving our battery power as much as possible.
Before we got our current system monitor, we might not have worried too much, but now that we can see how often we recharge to 100%, we’re a little more careful. Also, we’ve just entered the fifth year of this set of battery’s life, the beginning of the end of its expected life span. It’s like a person turning 70—one is not dead yet, but statistically, it’s time to think seriously about one’s health. We’ve been down around 75% of charge for days; not bad, but it’s time to try to let it charge up as much as possible when it can. The sunny days provide a maintenance charge through the solar panels, but the end of each day sees an increase of only a few percentage points.
That means the blog’s harder to keep up to date. We’ve managed to get on line for a half hour or so during the sunniest part of the day, when our solar array brings in around 6 amps. That allows a quick post after seeing to my Web clients and sending documents to Aly at school. Unfortunately, we need that same part of the day for other projects. We’re begining to plant the garden, I’m cutting firewood, some of the wild plants we forage are reaching optimal harvest time. Sitka just finished their herring fishery, so we’re watching the water for signs that shoals are arriving in our waters.
We typically get a period of doldrums in April. It helps, when watching for herring. It’s easier to see the whales, sea lions, and porpoises as they gather. Sometimes the water has been so utterly calm we’ve actually been able to see the herring shoals from the slight distubance they create passing by beneath the surface of the water. The conditions are optimal for launching our boats from our rocks to work nets. But, they’re not so good for generating our own electricity. So, at least for a while, posts may be briefer, or there may be no posts at all.
Please stand by, we’ll return to our regularly scheduled programming as soon as possible!