With a few bright spots of autumnal color remaining, stick season is upon us and the snow guns are operating.
In November, the shapes of the trees are visible once more with their articulated trunks and sweeping branches. Through these trees, the shapes of the hills near and far become more distinct without the camouflage of foliage. As the woods transition, summit views are visible, and the woods feel more open and expansive.
Walking through the woods, with the leaves crunching satisfyingly and the blue sky, it’s nice to be wearing a coat and nice not to be swatting at mosquitos (they lasted a long time this year!) and it’s nice to come home without being drenched in sweat!
The sunrise, coming later with every passing morning, shifts and its colors are no longer muted by leaves. Sunset comes sooner as we pass the fall equinox in September and head towards the inevitable changing of the clocks on November 5.
Like March and April, November and December offer a specific beauty of open blue skies but with the sun angled lower and lower, while in the spring the sun creeps higher and higher.
There’s beauty in this season of transition whether it is pausing to watch an enormous flock of geese arrange and re-arrange themselves as they fly south, or pulling the last carrots from the garden or cutting down the flower gardens. Lawnmowers and weedwhackers go back in the shed, snow tires are sorted and (the ambitious) get their ski gear sorted out.
Deer become cheekier, blending in nicely with the tree trunks as they feed on every last leaf and blade they can find.
This time of transition is a gift, to be savored as much as the unfurling of the buds in the spring. Soon the ground will be white with snow and humans and four-legged creatures will track only water into the house instead of mud and dirt and dust.
Take the time to get outside, breath in the distinctive scent of decaying leaves as you crunch through them. Enjoy the forest while everything is so open.