Transitions

Monday, September 23, 2019

September 23 is the Fall equinox, when the hours of day and night are equal, 12 hours for each, officially marking the transition to decreasing daylight hours. For the next three months, the days will continue losing light. Until the winter solstice on December 21, when daylight finally bottoms out by surviving only nine hours and 26 minutes. After that, the lighting shifts to a “bottoms up” mode.

Fall is a beautiful time of year and for most of us all too short. I plan to keep my horses active as long as possible and so must keep aware of the weather ahead. The NOAA is predicting this fall to be warmer-than-normal. The Farmer’s Almanac agrees, anticipating a fall that’s mild, but wetter-than-usual. These predictions help me calculate when to pull my horses’ shoes, they get to go barefoot through the snowy seasons.

The Almanac cautions us Pacific Northwesterners that the coming winter (even as we’re happily regaining light), from mid-to-late December through mid-to-late March, will bring lots of snow with very cold temps. In other words, this winter should be about like those we’ve experienced recently.

All of us are looking toward darker days and cooler weather, and now is the time to get busy and prepare. Those living in country areas and especially keeping large animals have fences to fix, weeds to eliminate, structures to shore up, gutters to clean, and a list that seems to grow longer as we repair and think ahead. We must make sure the snowblowers will start, the winter coats and boots are handy, the requirements for creating heat are in place, and just in case, we’ve an emergency supply of food, just-in-case, for people and pets alike.

Dear Friends: Darker and cooler for three months, let’s be ready! Diana

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