Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Bold Progression of Sunlight Hours

We are now sixty days past solstice and half way to the vernal equinox when the day and night are the same length.   In the last month we have watched the days grow longer and the rising arc of the sun the souther sky.  Changing height of the sun above the horizon each day is significant, for not only are the winter days short, the winter sun is low on the horizon and it's light weakened by passing through more atmosphere.   So now, in late February, a clear day means dazzling sunlight reaching over the the southern fringe of trees and bathing the lake in a flood of light so audacious it can only be faced with sunglasses  On days like today, when the temperature is over thirty and the clouds just wispy accents to the mountains and forest, we are taunted with thoughts of spring and breakup, and warmer days to come. But this is a lie that February tells each year, and those of us who have been scorched before will not buy the trick.  Winter is with us until March is on it's last legs and even in April we can expect some frosty mornings and unwelcome snow storms.  Until then we will savor the sunny part of winter and all it has to offer.