Bill Leslie's Carolina Conversations

Watauga Wind

Posted December 7, 2010

Watauga Wind Bill Leslie: Watauga Wind

What's the coldest you have ever been? When did the wind sting like needles against your face? When did the snow blow with a wild and wicked howl?  Please discuss.

While you are thinking about these questions consider the weather forecast for Watauga County this week in the N.C. mountains.  The high today in Boone is 17 degrees. That's a whole lot colder than Green Bay, Wisconsin today! It's going to be cold in Boone all week, and the wind is blowing with a vengeance.

I thought this would be a good time to debut a new music/photo essay titled Watauga Wind. The song is from my new Simple Beauty album, and the photographs come courtesy of Eric Heistand of Boone.

Please let us know what you think of this "chilling" mini movie. Thanks!


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  • Bill of Rights Dec 16, 2010

    You Americans crack me up. :-) When I lived in Alberta, Canada, the January temperatures would regularly hit the minus forties. Block heaters in cars were a must, and almost every parking spot had an outlet where you could plug your car in. Putting on a full winter suit was a must to get the mail since skin would freeze in a matter of seconds.

    I don't complain about the cold in North Carolina much!

  • buddice Dec 15, 2010

    Back when I was in college, in the late '70s, in Northern NY, we were walking back from the downtown area and the local bank clock read -40F, it then clicked and read -40C. We thought the clock was broken. When we got back to the dorm, being engineers, we got out the calculators and discovered the -40F is -40C. That was cold.
    But my daughter, a new ASU graduate, says nothing is a biting as the Boone wind in January.

  • NCPictures Dec 8, 2010

    BAH! Mere childsplay. I was in -48F and that was not the windchill, that was the real temperature in Montreal, WI

    Great music and great images!! Thanks for sharing.

  • capitalland Dec 8, 2010

    I was a junior at ASU in January 1985 when we set an alltime low of 24 below there. (Actual air temp not wind chill)Then I realized that summer school is a great time to be in Boone.

  • fishnett5977 Dec 8, 2010

    clap clap clap(the sound of me applauding!!!) Wonderful! So beautiful the music and the pics!!! Good to see you again on Sunday! Wonderful Christmas program at JCC!!! I got to see you and Cindy again and lo and behold I saw a former patient and her husband I love dearly and my husband saw his aunt and uncle times two!(His mothers sister and brother and their spouses!) Was a wonderful Christmas present to my hubby and myself! Enjoy your time up there in the "winterwonder land"!!! Cannot wait to get the new cd!!! Have a great week! Your friend from Meadow!

  • Tigger2 Dec 8, 2010

    A few years ago we went to the Pilot Knob Inn B&B located near Pilot Mtn (an awesome place to stay). It was mid-December and the weather had been pretty mild - until that weekend! We decided to go up to Pilot Mtn and the further up the mtn we went the colder it became - and sleeting!! Needless to say we were not prepared - and as we began walking to the overlook - with no gloves and the icy sleet pelting us - I thought we were going to turn into an icicle. As you can guess we didn't make it to the Knob and it took hours for us to thaw! That was the coldest I had ever been in my life! Bill - thanks for sharing your beautiful music and photography with us.

  • Celt Dec 7, 2010

    Beautiful, Bill.

    I used to live in western North Dakota. The last year we lived there we got 2" of snow on the last day of summer. We would frequently have weeks at 20 below, sometimes as low as 40 below, with windchill factors in the 60s below. You had to plug in your car every night, never go out with skin uncovered, and pray your car did not break down. But even at 10 below and colder, the children would go out at recess!

  • rmcallswift Dec 7, 2010

    Thank you for this, it's beautiful.

    I moved to Boone from the Triangle several years ago, and this week has been the longest sustained cold I've experienced up here, and the wind is out of this world. It really is beautiful though, and I think most of us relish the opportunity to get out in the snow in the amazing playground that we live in. At some point, when I've finished school, I'll have to move on, but I don't know that I'll ever find anywhere that is quite like the North Carolina mountains.

  • Wheelman Dec 7, 2010

    During the time I lived in Boone and them went to App I never minded the cold. The wind is another story! It's the wind that seems to suck the energy and warmth out of you. Just bundle up and cover all skin when it's this cold and WINDY!

    Coldest time was walking guard duty in Yorktown, VA. Gale force winds blowing sleet. Finished my rounds and came inside. Once I started to warm up someone asked me what was wrong with my face. I looked in the mirror and had tiny streaks of blood all over it where the blowing sleet had cut my skin. I had to be inside long enough for the skin to warm up enough for it to bleed. That was cold!

  • pgapaid Dec 7, 2010

    I went to Boone long, long time ago. Walking up the hill to Coltrane Dorm with the wind blowing had to be the coldest experinece. Sledding on the cafeteria trays, snowball fights, the wonderful depth of colors in fall, snow on the last day of April (and people wearing shorts in Raleigh), walking on the parkway when it snowed and was a quiet oasis are just a few of the memories of that area. To this day, Boone and the NC mountains remain among the top of my favorite places.

    I was fortunate enough to work in Asheville this February. While my co-workers complained about the snow and cold, I was out walking in it! Having the chance to go to Boone on that trip and being back on the Blue Ridge Parkway was exhilarating!

    The CD is on my Santa list! And also goodluck to the Mountaineers against Villanova!




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Bill Leslie