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Really Big Toys

>> Thursday, January 14, 2010

I appreciated this article by Sean Kirst in the Post-Standard yesterday, about how Syracuse is the snowiest big city in the U.S. and we should embrace that status more fully.

Admittedly I feel a twinge when I contemplate the snowiest big city status because the "population of 100,000" threshold is fairly arbitrary, and places like Fulton and Lowville always have Syracuse beat when it comes to snowfall.  I understand that Lowville has some massive rotary snow plows that they pull out when there's too much snow for regular plows.  I haven't seen them myself, but in searching the Internet for some photos or footage, I encountered quite the cache of riveting snow removal footage.

Check out this sucker.  It's essentially what would result from a regular big old snow plow mating with a snow blower, and then the offspring taking steroids.  A lot of them.  Or check out this one (I love the punch line on that video, when they pan over to a clear view of the oops!, and the evil laughter in the background).

By far my favorites among the Wicked Cool Snow Moving Equipment, though, relate to trains.  Try this awe inspiring footage of a plowing train.  I found myself leaning forward as I watched the engine bog down, as if I could somehow help it break through.  Or how about this little engine that could?  How on Earth do they get trains out of situations like that, or like this?  Apparently with a little assistance.

Okay.  Eh hem.  Betcha didn't know I'm part redneck at heart.  Big Snow Plows.  Heh heh heh.  Cooool.

Back to that article, though - I completely agree that we ought to embrace our crazy snowfall 'round these parts.  We cope with the snow remarkably well on a technical level, but couldn't we play it up a bit more? Make it a tourist attraction and get more people outside playing in it, rather than just enduring it?  Instead of just hosting international bass fishing tournaments on Onondaga Lake, how about hosting a snowplowing competition?  I, for one, would go to it.


Anonymous January 14, 2010 at 9:42 AM  

It's interesting, the Winter in a snowy area. You certainly get more than we do, and I bet you find the same - Two kinds of people. I know some that don't step out the door after the first snow unless they have to, and others who find every reason they can to get out there in it. I'm the second type!

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