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Topic: Wind Chill, Talk about  hype< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 04 2014, 8:51 pm  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Ok, I am fully aware of the dangers of wind chill in cold temperatures. However, I am tired of all the hype that surrounds it on the local TV stations during the weather segment.  Tonight it's supposed to get down to about 8 below zero - cold enough.  But they are predicting wind chills of minus 35 and make it sound like that's the actual temperatures and that you'll surely die if you venture outside. Truth is, as I understand it, it really doesn't factor in unless your flesh is exposed. If you're adequately covered up, in a car or a building, it's not that big of a factor.  Just a lot of hype to me.  I get tired of it.  In fact, I'm going to take a long walk  this evening.

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 04 2014, 8:58 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

In the South, it's the heat index..
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 04 2014, 9:01 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I totally agree with your mini-rant and you caught me at an excellent time as I remember a trail journal post I did recently on the subject.  Enjoy---(From TJ April 2009)---

WIND CHILL MANIA
   Don't mean nothing. The wind chill gets wintery but who cares about wind chill figures? Only the home bound nonhacking couch potatoes and the fear induced audience of the wannabe weather wankers who scroll numbers thru the teleprompter and cite in hush tones the record lows for the upcoming night.

   And when they mention the wind chills and wind speed, shift off the couch a bit and take a gander at your fellow men and women glued to the big screen, all bug eyed and gasping, clutching buttocks and tight sphincters reacting to the wind chill news, drooling by the thermostat while the pinhead putrid pontificating forecasting weathergoats wail out the usual boring litany of cold at dangerous levels with accompanying wind chills.

   Bring in the pets and stay indoors. Wind chill numbers were created by home bound invalids, self-arrested from a life outdoors, those peculiar individuals white-manized to fear nature and needing a common enemy, wind chill, to keep them believing in the modern sanctuary of the overbuilt house.

   They use the wind chill like a red flag, waving it in front of the army of humanity still at war with nature, as a battle cry to gird their loins and stay indoors.

   Wind chill has become the modern mongol horde, the warriors of the steppes closing in, or the neverending cancer scare.

ETC ETC


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 04 2014, 9:07 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Oddly enough I read the following this morning during a mental break at work.

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article....ll-real


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 04 2014, 9:08 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(theo @ Feb. 04 2014, 8:58 pm)
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In the South, it's the heat index..

Please no!  You bring up another pet peeve---heat index.  Okay, this will be my last rant and last quote from the old trip reports---(July 2010)---

THE LATEST WEATHER JARGON
   You're gonna love this latest spewing of weatherman bullcrap: First, they vomit garbage about "embedded thunderstorms" which in itself is enough to make you fume, then they have their Orange Alert Ozone Air Quality Warnings, and then when it's hot they add on their totally useless "but-it-gives-them-something-to-do" HEAT INDEX numbers as if it makes a difference. And now today I hear the phrase "HEAT INDICES" as if Heat Index isn't bad enough. Indices? Are we being waterboarded by a college course in statistics? Good god, people, leave it alone.

   Let's see, it's 95F outside.   Hmmm . . . . . .punch in that, add the square root of the diameter of my anus, throw in a ground up cricket, squeal on beat with the song JUST DANCE, drink a liter of fresh squeezed urine, insert head underwater in toilet and inhale deeply three times, run to freezer and insert head for 30 minutes, then rush to chalk board and take 95 degrees and tabulate wind chill with heat index spectrum(remove speculum before computing), and then add on freckle count . . . . VOILA! Today's Heat Indices are now available!!

Meanwhile, coal plant and car pollution is getting worse in the TN valley hour by hour and their juggling ambient "but it feels like" crap while your lungs and blood streams and livers and bladders and brains are being eat up with atmospheric smog, particulates, mercury and all the rest. Who cares about the daily temps or the heat index?

   Let's instead make an hourly report on what crap is in the air and which direction the filth is moving and which county monitor stations are getting hit the worse. How about reporting on embedded pockets of man-made carcinogenic air borne filth? "Ah, Fungus, you need to see the bright side of capitalism and not be so un-American. Technology will solve all these problems, just have faith in the system. Sure, right now you can't go outside and breath, but wait a few decades and we'll have solved this problem."

ETC END O' SCREED


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 04 2014, 9:39 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Makes a huge difference. Even in a car. try driving your at minus 45 versus sitting in a stationary car at minus 45 and see how well it runs and how warm it is inside.

Outside a vehicle? Makes a difference.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 04 2014, 10:12 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Walkinman @ Feb. 04 2014, 9:39 pm)
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Makes a huge difference. Even in a car. try driving your at minus 45 versus sitting in a stationary car at minus 45 and see how well it runs and how warm it is inside.

Outside a vehicle? Makes a difference.

This is how the "wee'tards" (weathermen) present it---Makes a huge difference.  Around where I live, 20F or below is "dangerously cold".  Their words.  While I'm out backpacking in it they say, "Stay indoors!!"  And they harp and hype on and on about wind chills, "feels like" and all the rest  There's an obvious fear-based side to broadcasting the weather.  

Even in a drought they say "We'll be having perfect weather with blue skies and sunny warm conditions all day tomorrow", when instead they should say, "God help us but if we don't get a week of rainstorms we are doomed."  It's very weird.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 04 2014, 10:24 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

QUOTE
There's an obvious fear-based side to broadcasting the weather.  


Well, of course there is. But that doesn't change the fact that wind chill makes a huge difference to how we experience the cold.

20˚F IS dangerously cold.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 04 2014, 10:30 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Walkinman @ Feb. 04 2014, 10:24 pm)
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20˚F IS dangerously cold.

Really?  It kind of surprises me that you'd say that.  A bit cold for some maybe, but dangerously so?   I spent the entire day last weekend skiing in 10 degree weather without any ill effects at all.  In fact, it was quite nice.  20 degrees would have seemed absolutely balmy.

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 04 2014, 10:38 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Wow, yeah ok it's hyped a little but geeze tipi your taking an extreme line yourself. Being outdoors a lot the windchill is something I consider a lot. Especially jogging - I've always said I'd go out for a run on a calm single digit nice day rather than a 30 degree day with 20mph winds anytime. It's been a windy winter and I've put that to the test multiple times. Besides the actual 'windchill' against your skin, the wind makes its way through the openings in your clothes and flushes out the warmer air that was in there. And indoors too, my house is very drafty and heated from a point source (wood) not forced air, so the wind has a huge effect on keeping my house warm too. When it gets down to around zero, with calm winds I can usually still maintain 70ish but on a windy day I might be dipping into the 50's while going full bore on the wood stoves.

But yeah, the weather folks hype it a little. But what don't they hype up? They usually try to sensationalize everything anyhow. This is no different.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 04 2014, 10:38 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(tomas @ Feb. 04 2014, 9:07 pm)
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a mental break at work.

For some reason that sounds like a more like a temporary psychosis than brief respite.  But that's just the wind chill talking.   :)
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 04 2014, 10:47 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Adirondackiteer @ Feb. 04 2014, 10:38 pm)
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Wow, yeah ok it's hyped a little but geeze tipi your taking an extreme line yourself.

But yeah, the weather folks hype it a little. But what don't they hype up? They usually try to sensationalize everything anyhow. This is no different.

And so we sound off about it.  They hype it, we react.  We hype them back.

And as I said earlier, my "extreme line" is a Rant.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 04 2014, 10:54 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Tipi Walter @ Feb. 04 2014, 10:47 pm)
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And as I said earlier, my "extreme line" is a Rant.

Sometimes it's nice to rant. :D

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 04 2014, 11:13 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Wind chill hasn't just gotten over-hyped, it's been re-defined. With all the sub-freezing temps in the news the last couple of weeks I noticed, on national coverage, that they no longer refer to the wind chill by saying "...and with the wind it feels like -X...", instead now they actually say "...and with the wind it's -X...", as if the wind actually lowers the temperature.

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 04 2014, 11:31 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(hikerjer @ Feb. 04 2014, 6:30 pm)
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(Walkinman @ Feb. 04 2014, 10:24 pm)
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20˚F IS dangerously cold.

Really?  It kind of surprises me that you'd say that.  A bit cold for some maybe, but dangerously so?   I spent the entire day last weekend skiing in 10 degree weather without any ill effects at all.  In fact, it was quite nice.  20 degrees would have seemed absolutely balmy.

hikerjer

"cold" is one of the most poorly understood elements we deal with in the outdoors. Hypothermia can set in at temps in the 50s (˚F) for adults, in the 60s in water. 20˚F is 30 degrees COLDER than that.

How dangerous is it? That depends, like most things, on how well we manage things. I'm sure you were dressed appropriately and took care of yourself last weekend, right? Well, you do that at even minus 40, and you should be fine as well. You do that at 95˚F, and you should be fine as well.

Do things wrong, on the other hand, and things can go downhill. And quickly. And getting them back under control can be harder than you think. In the field, it can easily be impossible.

Cheers

Carl


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 04 2014, 11:47 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I agree that Wind-chill is often overhyped and overstated to make it sound worse than it really is.  They make it sound like--with a wind-chill of -20--that things will get as cold as -20 outside, when they won't actually get any colder than the air temperature. I've also read trip reports where people listed the wind-chill during their hike without even bothering to tell you what the temp was, which just makes me roll my eyes a bit.

But it also is not true that wind doesn't make a difference.  It does indeed. Frostbite, hypothermia and many other cold-related ailments are far easier to get in high wind.  Last trip to Greenland, we had temps to -40 on calm clear nights.  That was uncomfortable when our whiskey froze solid, but we weren't in much of any danger.  The actual dangerous weather occurred during storms where the temps rarely got below -10*F or so.  The only time any of us got nips of frost-bite (myself included) were riding snowmobiles back to camp in bouts of winds.



When this picture ^ was taken (me fetching food for dinner), it was only about -5*F out.  We'd seen temps fully 35* colder than that already that trip.  But those windy storms were the most dangerous times of the trip.  A British ski expeditioner died not far from us during the exact same storms we sat in, we found out over the sat-phone.  He didn't die from exposure in the coldest temps of the trip, he died in the fiercest winds.  Wind matters, don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

- Mike


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 04 2014, 11:59 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(GoBlueHiker @ Feb. 04 2014, 7:47 pm)
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The only time any of us got nips of frost-bite (myself included) were riding snowmobiles back to camp in bouts of winds....

- Mike

Oh man, don't I agree! My nose has NEVER been so cold as doing that very thing.

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(Walkinman @ Feb. 04 2014, 11:31 pm)
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(hikerjer @ Feb. 04 2014, 6:30 pm)
QUOTE

(Walkinman @ Feb. 04 2014, 10:24 pm)
QUOTE
20˚F IS dangerously cold.

Really?  It kind of surprises me that you'd say that.  A bit cold for some maybe, but dangerously so?   I spent the entire day last weekend skiing in 10 degree weather without any ill effects at all.  In fact, it was quite nice.  20 degrees would have seemed absolutely balmy.

hikerjer

"cold" is one of the most poorly understood elements we deal with in the outdoors. Hypothermia can set in at temps in the 50s (˚F) for adults, in the 60s in water. 20˚F is 30 degrees COLDER than that.

How dangerous is it? That depends, like most things, on how well we manage things. I'm sure you were dressed appropriately and took care of yourself last weekend, right? Well, you do that at even minus 40, and you should be fine as well. You do that at 95˚F, and you should be fine as well.

Do things wrong, on the other hand, and things can go downhill. And quickly. And getting them back under control can be harder than you think. In the field, it can easily be impossible.

Cheers

Carl

No argument from me  Being dressed appropriately and taking care of yourself is the key especially in wind chill situations.

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(GoBlueHiker @ Feb. 04 2014, 11:47 pm)
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 Wind matters, don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

- Mike

Oh, I agree totally.  I've been out in the wind too many times not to.  My point is that if you are adequately protected, it's not the killer the media makes it out to be. Sitting inside your home or heated car shouldn't be an issue unless, of course, the wind finds it way in. Being protected is the key.  I'd never minimize the effect of wind and cold.  Didn't mean to.

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2014, 12:18 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(hikerjer @ Feb. 04 2014, 10:09 pm)
QUOTE

(GoBlueHiker @ Feb. 04 2014, 11:47 pm)
QUOTE
 Wind matters, don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

- Mike

Oh, I agree totally.  I've been out in the wind too many times not to.  My point is that if you are adequately protected, it's not the killer the media makes it out to be. Sitting inside your home or heated car shouldn't be an issue unless, of course, the wind finds it way in. Being protected is the key.  I'd never minimize the effect of wind and cold.  Didn't mean to.

Sure, and my statement wasn't necessarily directed right at you in particular. :)  But what constitutes "adequate protection" can depend a lot on the wind.  It was about +20*F out in this picture and we were happy as larks on a sunny day.  It was the warmest day of the whole trip.



20*F when the wind kicks up badly (as I know you're well aware), and the gloves, balaclava and coat go back on.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2014, 12:28 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

...57 News Channels with nothing new.....
I have a similar skeptical take on making weather events a bigger story than what is actually going on outside our immediate bubble. I also have a very healthy respect for wind, even sustained breezes in single digit and sub 0 F degree weather. I have worked outdoors in 10-13 hour days in North Dakota, Eastern Montana and northern Ontario in winter. I have lucked out with a couple instances of minor frostbite on my hands but scabbed up my face twice with frost-nip without detecting it's on-set. It happens quick. I discovered I was in trouble once when I opened a rig truck door and the defroster air hit my face and it BURNED. A couple hours later my face was a scab. I had all afternoon kept sticking my head above a windscreen to read a troublesome mud gauge.
Since Thanksgiving I have had to stand down no less than four days this winter rather than engage in risky play in single digit temps and 25-35 mph winds. Out of those four days, one day I could have gone out hiking or nordic skiing in the afternoon with the winds moderating.
Last Sunday, I and my partner were out skiing in 12-14 deg weather, at 9500', with moderate breeze and very clear skies. I was fine but it was very hard on my companions nose and eyes. We are both in our sixth decade and I do think age can be a factor on skin and vascular effects of exposure too.
Like GBH, I have seen wind effect kill. In 1978, a derrick hand not three miles away from where my crew was working overnight died in his tower when he would not leave the nest when the draworks seized up. He dozed as his crew scrambled to repair the rig. It was 10-15f with gusts up in the 30 mph range. The man didn't wake when time came to play again. My crew was in and out of their trucks, and down in the coulees out of the wind.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2014, 1:20 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I got into an argument over this with a co-worker once.  He tried to tell me that the thermometer on a vehicle was inaccurate because the vehicle was moving and therefore recorded a colder air temperature than it actually was.  I tried to explain to him that the thermometer only measured air temperature and that it didn't matter how fast the air was flowing across the sensor.  I then tried to explain that wind chill was a calculated value and not an actual scientific value.

But what else would you expect from a New Jersey transplant?   :D


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(Cloudwalker @ Feb. 04 2014, 11:20 pm)
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I got into an argument over this with a co-worker once.  He tried to tell me that the thermometer on a vehicle was inaccurate because the vehicle was moving and therefore recorded a colder air temperature than it actually was.  I tried to explain to him that the thermometer only measured air temperature and that it didn't matter how fast the air was flowing across the sensor.  I then tried to explain that wind chill was a calculated value and not an actual scientific value.

But what else would you expect from a New Jersey transplant?   :D

There are a number of folks who believe that.  I've come across a few as well, sometimes it really surprised me.

It only makes a difference on things that generate heat to stay warm, such as (say) our bodies.  The wind transports the conducted heat away faster than calm air would and makes it feel colder faster.

Preaching to the choir, I know, but a sizable segment of the population believes that fallacy.  Physical fallacies are pretty common though.  A lot of people believe that if you spin something around in circles at the end of a string and then snap the string, that the object will continue to arc/circle around you as it moves away.  Misguided intuition causes numerous fallacies that people don't always realize.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2014, 1:49 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

COLD?  I had a Physical Science teacher tell me once that there was no such thing as cold, it was merely a "lack of heat energy".   :cool:

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2014, 1:52 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Bitching about the weather asnd now bithing about the weatherman/lady.

Some people just like to bitch.

Rumi   <~~~~~~bitchin'


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“This is my Indian summer ... I'm far more dangerous now, because I don't care at all.”
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2014, 4:57 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(RumiDude @ Feb. 04 2014, 11:52 pm)
QUOTE
Bitching about the weather asnd now bithing about the weatherman/lady.

Some people just like to bitch.

Rumi   <~~~~~~bitchin'

It's a bitching vortex!!


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2014, 8:18 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I'm another with a wood stove and an older, drafty uninsulated house  so even though it doesn't get truly cold here in the CA redwoods like it did where I grew up in Wyoming I notice the house will not warm up past 44* inside if it is windy and around 30 outside. Also at 48* yesterday but very windy, I had thick frost on my roof and car and grass in the dawn.

But I laughed at my friends Facebook status that announced that "it is -11 but feels like -17".


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If Light is in your heart, you will find your way Home. (Rumi)

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2014, 8:29 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

If you're not going out naked, WC really doesn't mean much. It does but not nearly as much as the doomsayers would have you believe.

QUOTE
You do that at 95˚F, and you should be fine as well.

Not really. You can only take off so much in the heat, you can always add more in the cold.
I can't take heat, never have been able to. I start overheating in the high 70s. Gets too much higher, I can be in trouble if I don't keep up with water intake (and I mean a LOT, like more than 1 gallon/day not doing anything but sitting). Make it 95 with high humidity and I'm in serious danger of heat exhaustion or even heat stroke.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2014, 8:37 am Skip to the previous post in this topic.  Ignore posts   QUOTE

QUOTE
"it is -11 but feels like -17".

It is -17° here....  :p


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