February Muses

I read this in the latest “News From Vermont” sent out by Burr Morse…This issue was written by Weston Cate.

It doesn’t make any difference whether or not the Ground Hog sees his shadow on February 2. What does matter is that date marks the halfway point in the winter. The old Vermont farmer on that day would take a hard look at his woodshed and his barn to see if he had “half his wood and half his hay” to see him through the rest of the winter.

It looks like Burr must be grabbing a bit of vacation before the sap starts to run for this years maple syrup…Burr doesn’t putt his newsletters online so you have to subscribe to read his down home muses. Take a wander over to The Morse Farm and sign up. And if you are ever in the area of Montpelier, VT, stop in and tell Burr that Gary from Texas sent you…

While we are talking about groundhog day there is this from the Weather Underground…

Wunder Blog : Weather Underground
Punxsutawney Pennsylvania’s famous prognosticating rodent, Punxsutawney Phil, saw his shadow this morning. According to tradition, this means that a solid six more weeks of winter can be expected across the U.S. From the official web site of the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club, groundhog.org:

Here Ye! Here Ye! Here Ye!

On Gobbler’s Knob on this fabulous Groundhog Day, February 2nd, 2008
Punxsutawney Phil, the Seer of Seers, Prognosticator of all Prognosticators,
Rose to the call of President Bill Cooper and greeted his handlers, Ben Hughes and John Griffiths.

After casting a weathered eye toward thousands of his faithful followers,
Phil consulted with President Cooper and directed him to the appropriate scroll, which proclaimed:

“As I look around me, a bright sky I see, and a shadow beside me.
Six more weeks of winter it will be!”

I’m hesitant to disagree with a forecaster of Phil’s stature, but I see only about of week of hard-core winter left over the U.S. The 16-day run of the GFS model shows the jet stream retreating to a position in southern Canada in about a week, which will usher in mild temperatures for this time of year across most of the U.S. The latest 1-month outlook from NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center shows an above normal chance of warmer than average temperatures across a large portion of the U.S. for February.

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