Steve Pool: Reflections on snow

SEATTLE -- This is one of my favorite trees in my backyard. It is a very old and carefully shaped Dogwood that blooms magnificently in the spring. It's always beautiful, but today it was especially striking.

I will admit to having mixed feelings about snow. There is the obvious beauty. But on the other hand, it can play havoc with so many things and seemingly even more so here in the Northwest.

There is also the angst that all of us forecasters go through when it comes to predicting snow. Weather is the only thing on the news where we tell you what is going to happen, as opposed to what did happen. There is obvious accountability associated with that.

It is without a doubt the most difficult challenge we encounter. The stakes are high and failure to deliver can be painfully obvious. Having done this for many years I can tell you that we are much better at it than we used to be. There is also a wonderful collaboration that goes on today within the weather community. People like Scott Sistek and Cliff Mass, the National Weather Service, various bloggers and students; we all work together and trade ideas because we realize we're all in the same boat.

So I'm taking the day off. Not just because I want to play in the snow with my kids (they are currently running around the house giddy with excitement) but I had long ago set aside this day to get an early start on some time off for Christmas. So I will do that. Put up my feet up. Cup of coffee, finish my shopping. More sleep.

I hope you manage to get through today without too many problems and I wish you all a safe weekend and happy holidays.