Tuesday, December 15, 2015

No ice, no snow, open water

Sunrise over Pincho Lake - December 13, 2015
Non-winter is in place here on Roundtop Mtn.  The ski resort hasn’t yet been able to make snow, as the nighttime temperatures are well above freezing.  I haven’t turned on the electric heat in the cabin, though on a few damp mornings, I had a fire in the fireplace.  For the past week I haven’t even needed that.
Birds are not flocking to my feeders.  They are apparently still able to find natural food in the forest.  Oh, a few of them show up in the morning and again in the evening. I think it’s more to check that food is available than from any real sense of needing it.  By this time turkey and black vultures have usually departed at least some ways to the south.  Yesterday, I saw 9 of them twirling around the top of Roundtop. 
El Nino, the apparent cause of this warm weather, is showing its impact.  How long this record-breaking, strange weather will last is unknown.
Today, a northwest wind is driving down the temperature, though it’s still above 50°.  The northern robins, a Labrador subspecies I believe, still forage through the forest.  When I was younger, they were called woods robins locally, browner and larger than the summer robins that breed here in that season.  I saw a flock of 14 yesterday.  I usually find them by sound.  They tend to hang together in a loose flock, skimming through the forest.  I see them mostly in the mornings and evenings.  Most winters I see them into January, though they do disappear during the worst of a winter.  In February they often reappear on the first sunny day. They are always able to find open water—perhaps from a spring-fed pond, a puddle or an open stream.  So far this year, the pickings are easy and open water is everwhere.


Scott said...

Carolyn: If I didn't have to drive, I'd welcome snow. But, as long as I'm employed and HAVE to get to places dictated by my work schedule, I'm ecstatic about this unusually warm weather. When I retire, let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.

Pablo said...

In the fifties here today in Kansas City. Cooler, but not much cooler, days are ahead in the forecast. Don't think we'll have a white Xmas this year.

Granny Sue said...

Same here, Carolyn--too warm, just weird. No snowbirds yet, even! Your lake photo is so serene.