Friday, 9 November 2012

First Snows in Oskemen

Eventually it arrived on Monday 5th November.  After torrential rain all the previous day the temperature dropped and finally the precipitation went from liquid to solid.  Unfortunately, all the rain created large puddles and damp ground so most of the snow in the city was slushy.
Out in the suburb of кшт (Kuh-Shuh-Tuh), the snow was far more crunchy and the roads were still only visible as tyre tracks by the end of the working day.  The snow continued pretty much throughout the daylight hours.  It was almost a relief to have had the white covering appear.
I have discovered we are located in the South Siberia weather map area, which should give a clue as the kind of weather to come for the rest of the winter - more snow, ice and rapidly disappearing temperatures. 
As I left the Nazarbayev Intellectual School on Monday evening, the slush was hardening up and pavement and steps becoming treacherous.  The icy base layer to found the winter on had been laid.
And the temperatures plummeted further as the skies cleared.  On Friday morning (9th) it was -25C at 6am.  The wind picked up, and snow that was on the roof was been blowing off as a fine powdery glitter, finding its way into drifts.

On Sunday 11th November I had a walk along the River Irtysh.  A cold wind was still blowing from the east.
I took these images of the river port and the Kazakhstan Flag monument on the hill behind it.

The river docks along the upper reaches of the Irtysh must be in the running for ports furthest from, but connected to, the salty oceans by navigable rivers (in this case the Irtysh and the Ob connecting to the Arctic Ocean).
I also managed to catch the mosque on the road to кшт in a good light; such that the minarets were all reflecting off the main blue dome.