The snow was pelting down so hard in tiny crystals on a recent hike through the Howe Block of Camel’s Hump State Forest that it was hard to see and initially it froze my forehead.

It was Sunday, December 15, and the trek led from Tucker Hill through the Howe Block and over Dana Hill Road via the Enchanted Forest. Initially the snow felt like an impediment to an enjoyable romp with the dogs, but after a bit, it became a very attractive part of the scenery. It was coming down so hard. It was so persistent!

The dogs were not at all bothered by it and as usual were running full-tilt back and forth up the trail and into the woods. Heading back through the Enchanted Forest from Dana Hill, the snow changed a little bit – into smaller, less sharp pellets.

Another couple and a dog were encountered, friends, and we stopped to talk while the three dogs sniffed each other and ran out and back. It’s so beautiful today, they said. We’re lucky, we agreed. And it was, and we were, despite the fact that it was snowing really, really hard.

Hiking resumes, the couple and their dog headed down to Dana Hill and this hiker back toward Tucker Hill Road. We encountered another hiker and a dog whom we’ve met before on this trail.

Again, the three dogs romped and barked and jumped and ran in circles while we talked about how stunning it was to be in the woods at this moment. It was snowing so hard.

Taking our leave and heading toward home it seemed like a gift, a miracle to have been able to walk through the woods through the densely falling snow and to have encountered several other people who shared that sentiment. It was beautiful out there on Sunday.

Winter can be long here and going outside to play in it, to embrace it, to let the pellets hit your forehead while the dogs run is a great way to embrace the moment and make it through.

As we wait for the longest night of the year and the inevitable return of the light, go outside in the snow and play. Romp like a dog.