Internet connection has only just come up again so here's an update on our situation:
Late last night when mrs. stampeder was going to bed I couldn't sleep so I stayed up and settled in to the recliner chair in the living room with the curtains wide open looking westward to the Island and got ready for the show.
I was not disappointed! I have never in my life seen clouds moving overhead at such a sustained speed, and the house rattled a few times. Power flickered about 4 or 5 times but we were lucky that it stayed on. Street lights went out a few times though. The big fir tree was bending sideways at about 40 degrees with all its limbs downwind the way you see a palm tree in hurricane footage. Keep in mind this is a 150' fir we're talking about! The cedars are usually more flexible than firs and they were bouncing about for hours. My Channel Master 4228 antenna on its 15' galvanized mast never budged an inch all night.
The worst part of the storm hit us from about 2:30am to about 4am in which the night sky turned grayish white and the rain hurled sideways. There was a constant roar of the wind.
You know the old saying "batten down the hatches" - how's this for irony: the only real damage to our property was one hatch blown off the top of the compost container and then at about 4am the wind sheared so sharply in front of the house that the front roof hatch of the camper blew right off its hinges. I ran out into the cul-de-sac in my jammies and grabbed it
so then I got out there with a ladder in the wind (it almost blew me off it once) and put down a tarp over the hole and weighed it down with pieces of 6x6 and 4x4 lumber I had kicking around.
Today I opened up the camper, expecting the worst, and to my shock and delight there was not a drop of moisture to be found! I cannot figure it, but I thoroughly checked the sleeping bag, mattress, and carpeting and they were all dry!
After seeing some of the terrible damage done over in Coquitlam and Port Moody (about 15km away as the crow plummets) and especially over on the Island its obvious that we got off lightly. The news reports say Port Alberni through to Parksville will remain without hydro probably through this weekend, and down to Bamfield much longer. I haven't tried phoning either of my sisters on the Island because they are asking people not to overload the phone system.
My neighbour, the retired BC Hydro lineman, says Hydro is short about 200 linemen to do the kind of cleanup that is now needed so they'll probably get some crews from Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba coming in. He was born and raised in this area and he has never seen anything like this: three huge storms hit us in less than 10 days!
If you have a satellite dish tune into the Vancouver local news to see how it all looks.