We're not strangers to extreme winter weather events in Oklahoma. I can think of four distinct ice storms I've experienced in my life living here. The worst of them all happened my senior year of high school. Almost my entire hometown was out of power for two weeks. We lost so many trees that an organization came in the year after and planted one million new trees. It's a small town, where they put those million trees I have no idea, but it was a big deal. If you had a chainsaw and a way to drive around town, you made a mint in cutting up limbs.

There was another that happened on December 23rd in either 2008 or 2009. I remember it shut down all of the highways across a couple of states. My family was planning on spending Christmas at the Gaylord Hotel in Dallas, and everyone got stranded at home because of the weather. Even though we eventually all made it to my sisters house in OKC, it was not a good xmas holiday because everyone was both bummed out and irritated things didn't go as planned. I had fun though. My 4 year old nephew and me spent most of our time in the snow.

In January 2010, SWOK got such a severe ice storm that it actually brought down our tower Southwest of town. Critter says it looked like Supermans fortress of solitude out there. The thick ice that built up on the tower came shedding off as the steel structure gave out beneath it. He said there were icicles twelve feet tall sticking out of the ground. In fact, the impact was so severe, there's still sections of that old tower sticking out of the ground that the cranes couldn't pull loose.


The fourth was just a few years later in February of 2014. I had just moved back to Lawton about two weeks earlier, and on a forecast of "some flurries," everyone woke up to an inch of ice chilling below four inches of snow. The snow melted off pretty quick, but the ice stayed for a while. Honestly, it was pretty cool. The waters of Medicine Park were still completely frozen over days later. It was honestly a very pretty sight.


Looking back on those storms, this current ice storm doesn't seem so bad. We haven't gotten as much ice, and the ground and air temperatures are working together to keep the roads relatively melted. The biggest issue that will make this ice storm memorable is the fact that it's October, and the trees still have all their leaves. Sure, we didn't get huge accumulations of ice, but that ice has so much more to stick to in the canopies. I don't know about you, but my entire front and back yard is full of my neighbors tree limbs. If you ever want to plant a tree, do not plant cottonwood. They're really messy and extremely brittle. I pick up limbs year round from those stupid trees.

Here's some more of the carnage seen around SWOK.