Thursday, February 20, 2014

Had Enough?

With the two to three times a week snow storms ranging from feet of light fluffy snow to several inches of frozen rain / sleet / wet snow mix the question that New Englanders are asking each other is, "Have you had enough winter yet?".

Personally, I'm rolling with the punches. When it's nice I've gone in search of the visiting Snowy Owls. When it snows, I stay in and clean up the backlog of photos from the summer waiting to be processed. (You can't underestimate what an afternoon spent with photos of Piping Plovers, Loons, or Tree Swallows in beautiful sunlight will do to improve your disposition.)

Unfortunately, that means that I have been ignoring Great Meadows. While it can be interesting in the winter, I must admit visiting is a bit more work in the winter, than it is on a warm summer's morning.

At first glance you might think that the refuge is closed for the season, since many of the sights are buried in snow.

Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20140220 &emdash;

Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20140220 &emdash;

But the morning after the overnight snow has a certain beauty while the trees are still frosted with snow. (Just don't be standing under neath one as the snow starts to melt.)

Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20140220 &emdash;

Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20140220 &emdash;

Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20140220 &emdash;
Great Meadows version of moguls in support of our winter olympians

Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20140220 &emdash;
With so much snow it's packed everywhere

But as you start to walk around you will see evidence of wildlife everywhere.
Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20140220 &emdash;
The stealthy tracks of the coyote. (Do you notice they rarely walk in a straight line?)

Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20140220 &emdash;
Like old time Yankees, the woodpeckers aren't bothered by a little snow and cold

You'll find lots of "feeder birds" - Chickadees, Tufted Titmouse, Nuthatches and your occasional Goldfinches in their drag brown winter wear. But occassionally you'll run into something special like this Golden-crowned Kinglet that will bring a smile to your wind-chapped lips. It's bright yellow/orange cap brings a bit of color to the otherwise desaturated winter landscape.
Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20140220 &emdash;

Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20140220 &emdash;

So we persist and carry-on. We know that February is almost over. Winter may have a few more punches. While they may hurt, the pain won't last. Soon the migratory birds will be returning. While they are enjoying their warm environs and contemplate the long journey to their summer homes, you have to know that the snowbirds are wondering if this is what they are returning to.
Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20140220 &emdash;

Note: You can always click on any of the images to see this post's album of large size images.