After 30+ years in a place, if you are observant of the seasonal changes, you begin to know when and how one season lets go for another to begin. The previous winters snowpack was much less than normal. Unseasonably warm temperatures, little rain and Spring thunderstorms packing little punch have led to early changes.
I look to the creatures who go about their business of seasonal changes. For millennia they have made changes based on a deep and mysterious pulse that we humans have managed to mostly block from our conscientiousness. Recent observations are clues to my query. I have seen geese settled down at higher elevations in the watershed and lower down their boisterous warning tells me to stay away the early arrival of a new family. The “chittering” sound of a Hummingbird racing by at full speed indicates their earlier than usual return. Even the Marmots appear to be out sunning themselves earlier after months of winter hibernation.
I won’t be fooled by my observations and conclusions that late Spring and Summer has come early this year. My backpack still carries a heavy sweater. A warm sunny day still turns cool after sunset or when a cloud hides the sun mid-day. Passing rain showers bring colder temperatures and and occasional snowflake.
My observations will continue as Summer takes a firm hold and I begin to explore the High Country.I will look for familiar snowfields that may very well be smaller or have vanished. I think the Avalanche Lily will be early, high lakes may be ice free earlier and my stuffed-up nose will tell me that the Spruce and Fir are pollinating early.
It will once again be a delight to roam the High Country in search of the seasonal changes.