News of Riverton, Lander and Fremont County, Wyoming, from the Ranger's award winning journalists.
Oct 2, 2012 - By Steven R. Peck
Two flips to go
We've reached a new month, the 10th of 2012. Just two more flips of the calendar this year. The month is young, but we're already seeing the opening act of "October Gold," with the leaves changing colors in the Riverton Valley and surrounding area.
It seems a bit earlier than usual this year. Using both memory and our newspaper photography archives as a guide, we appear to be about two weeks ahead of schedule for fall colors.
Perhaps that's to be expected, considering that the trees and shrubs leafed and blossomed nearly a month earlier than normal. Remember those April apple blossoms?
Hear ye, hear ye
The U.S. Supreme Court is back in session, having convened as always on the first Monday in October. The high court session in an election year carries added human interest, because of the strong probability that at least one court vacancy will emerge during the next four years. Either Barack Obama or Mitt Romney will choose the person to fill that vacancy.
How likely is it that there will be an empty seat on the high court before the 2017 presidential inauguration? Very. The last president who didn't get to perform that duty was Jimmy Carter, who left office 31 years ago. Before Carter, it was Andrew Johnson, who left office in 1869.
One of the three questions posed a month ago about the change of season has been answered. We did not get a 90-degree day in September.
It really wasn't even close. Preliminary September statistics from the National Weather Service show that the high temperature all month long was 85, which we hit three times -- the 1st, the 4th and the 9th. After Sept. 12, in fact, it only got as warm as 80 degrees once. That was on the 22nd.
As for the other two questions -- an 80-degree day in October and measurable snow by Halloween, time will tell. Actually, time might tell as soon as this week, when the first dose of somewhat wintry weather could arrive Wednesday.
To remind the wagerers among the readership, our answers to the three questions were no, yes and yes.
If you see American flags flying lower then usual this Sunday, Oct. 7, it's in honor of fallen firefighters. By order of the president, all flags in public places are to be flown at half staff that day.
If you fly a flag at your home or place of business, please honor this request as well.
Coats for Kids
The Ranger is glad to be participating in this year's Kiwanis Coats for Kids or Coats for Folks program. Look for the big box just inside our Main Street entrance. Anything that can help keep another person warm this winter is accepted and appreciated.
News reports note that Fremont County had the second-highest number of wolf hunting licenses in Wyoming, after Park County, for the first-ever wolf hunting season in the state. It started Monday.
If you have a wolf license, or know someone who does, we'd like to talk to you about the possibility of a Ranger reporter tagging along on a wolf hunt.
Please call 856-2244 if you're interested.
Smoke? What smoke?
The world changed overnight Monday, at least in terms of smoke from the Alpine Lake Fire. We've lived with smoke in our eyes, our noses, our hair, our clothes and on our horizons for weeks. Then, Tuesday morning, gone. There had been glimpses of the Wind River range through the haze in recent days, but it wasn't until dawn Tuesday that they were truly "there" again, catching the morning sun in full view and full glory on the kind of crystal clear morning that makes a person glad to live in Wyoming.
It's been a long time coming.
Here's to a good week.