Last updated: February 19. 2013 11:01PM - 187 Views

Story Tools:

Font Size:

Social Media:

Avid angler Paul Olszyk remembers a snowstorm that almost marooned him at Lake Wallenpaupack years ago.

“My car couldn’t make it out,” said Olszyk, 78, of Wilkes-Barre Township. “I had to wait for a state truck to come along.”

Then there was the time, he recalls, when waist-high snowdrifts persuaded just about everybody to stay snug at home, though the roads were passable.

“My buddies and I went out to Harveys Lake that day,” he said.

Snow or bare ground, frozen lake or lapping water, Olszyk pursues his favorite pastime in all kinds of weather. “My fishing gear is always ready in the car,” he said as he strolled along the lake at Frances Slocum State Park in Kingston Township on Tuesday. “I usually get panfish.”

While he’s matter-of-fact about accepting the weather as it comes, other area residents have their druthers. Some are longing for ski-able snow, or for the picturesque appearance of a fresh dusting on houses and bushes.

Meanwhile, another contingent – some of whom we found walking briskly outdoors, with or without dogs, on recent, snow-free days – said they’d be happy if they didn’t see a flake all winter.

“It’s a little safer walking,” said Chris Stefon, a substitute teacher from Dallas, explaining a clear path means she’s less likely to slip during her daily 5- or 6-mile jaunts.

“Without snow, I can keep on riding my bike to work,” said Lee Frantz, 58, of Plymouth, who cycles several miles to his job at the Around Town Bicycle Shop in downtown Wilkes-Barre.

“It’s easier to do all the things I like to do, like Rollerblading,” said Caitlin Baker, 21, of Kingston, as she walked her dog through Kirby Park last week.

While snow would get in Baker’s way, she admitted her dog, a boxer named Dok, would probably enjoy it. “He’d run around and put his face in it,” she said.

And Frantz, ardent cyclist though he is, still would like enough snow to ski this winter, both downhill and cross-country.

As for art-lover Brian Benedetti, he would like to experience the beauty of snow-covered winter scenes that look like Currier & Ives painted them. “Or Norman Rockwell,” he said, plugging an upcoming exhibit of Saturday Evening Post covers at Misericordia University.

Who will get their wish?

The National Weather Service is forecasting highs around 40 today, 32 tomorrow. There’s an 80 percent chance of rain today and 60 percent chance of snow tonight. Anything could happen, even possibly a white Christmas.

For more evidence of uncertainty regarding the entire 2012-2013 snow season, earlier this week a map at accuweather.com depicted an “above-normal snowfall” band over part of the Mid-Atlantic region and New England.

Northeastern Pennsylvania appeared to be neither completely in nor completely out of that band, but right on the border.


Whether or not we have a White Christmas on the horizon, nature might be calling you outside to drink in the spirit of the season. Here are just a couple of ideas on this, the first day of winter:

• Go birding: The Greater Wyoming Valley Audubon Society will meet in the Kirby Park parking lot at Market Street and Dawes Avenue in Kingston at 8 a.m. Sunday, and you are welcome to join. If you missed the annual Audubon Society Christmas Bird Count in your area, you can still thrill to seeking out winged things.

• Take a hike: Try 11 moderate miles with the Susquehanna Trailers Hiking Club on the Broad Mountain Lookout. Meet at the Park and Ride on Route 309 near Blackman Street in Wilkes-Barre at 9:45 a.m. Sunday.

• Give a man a fish: The horseshoe-shaped Frances Slocum Lake at Frances Slocum State Park in Kingston Township welcomes anglers year-round. Perhaps you can hook your holiday meal?



All user comments are subject to our Terms of Service. Users may flag inappropriate comments.
comments powered by Disqus

Featured Businesses


Info Minute

Gas Prices

Wilkes-Barre Gas Prices provided by GasBuddy.com