Written by Lyle Ahrens, Posted: Tue, December 25 2012 at 3:46 PM, Updated: Tue, December 25 2012 at 3:59 PM
Dreams came true for viewers east of the Cascades who have been hoping for a 'White Christmas'...It's been a few years since snow fell on Christmas Day.
Russ Onsen serves as chief observer at the Kingsley Field Weather Station, a job he's held for the past 18 years...
"We're strictly here working for the Air National Guard, for weather observing capabilities in support of the Guard."
Part of Onsen's job is keeping weather records. And Onsen says it's been a while since it snowed on Christmas day...
"Looking back at the records, 2009 - and we had a lot of inches on the ground at that time, but we only had a trace. So far today, we already got over an inch and a half fell since 8 o'clock this morning."
Klamath Falls normally gets about 40 inches of snow a year. Onsen notes that this year is about a foot short of that average...
"We've had 3 inches so far for this month, and from last year, December, we're way down."
But for now, Onsen is just happy to have a white Christmas. "I love the weather. That's all there is - I love the weather."
KOTI-TV NBC2 reporter Lyle Ahrens moved from Nebraska to Klamath Falls in the late 1970's. He instantly fell in love with the mountains, the trees and the rivers, and never once regretted the move.
Lyle's job history is quite colorful. He’s managed a pizza parlor; he’s been a bartender, and a “kiwifruit grader” at an organic orchard in New Zealand. A Klamath Falls radio station hired Lyle in the mid 90's as a news writer and commercial producer. In 2004, Lyle joined the KOTI/KOBI news operation.
Lyle notes with pride that he has a big responsibility presenting the Klamath Basin to a wide and varied audience. "The on-going water crisis has underscored the fact that the people and the issues in the Klamath Basin are every bit as diverse as the terrain. Winning and keeping the trust of the viewers, as well as the newsmakers, is something I strive for with each story".
When he's not busy reporting the news, Lyle enjoys astronomy, playing guitar, fixing old radios and listening to anything by Sheryl Crow.