Snow dusted the mountain last evening, just enough to make walking slippery this morning. The new snow covers both ice and bare patches, so I can no longer tell one from the other. I step out smartly, only to slip and nearly fall when my boot finds the ice.
As cold as it has been for the past 10 days, I am surprised to still find some open water. The faster moving streams are still open and gurgling. That running water attracts the forest residents, too. For them, finding water in winter is nearly as much a chore as hunting or browsing. Tracks crisscross the banks of open streams, to the point where it’s difficult to make out who was visiting. Newer tracks cover and obliterate other tracks, while at the iced-in streams the snow is unmarked.
A slight moderation of the temperature around Roundtop will bring temperatures near to 40 in another day or so. I may take to a t-shirt again, if that happens. It will feel like summer. Perhaps a few days of that will be enough to break the ice on some of the other little streams around the mountain. I’m sure the deer and fox and rabbits would appreciate that.