I shot these pictures today, 12/25/2012. I have better winter pictures from February 2012, coming soon to a blog scribblement near you, but today I wanted to share pictures taken today.
This has nothing to do with Christmas, but boy-oh-boy if you are into Christmas, in my part of the world the sky and the snow are performing just as Bing Crosby dreamed for on Christmas.
For our nightly walk this most celebrated day of the year, in a brisk thirteen degrees (no problem when walking briskly, unless into a stiff headwind, then you have nose issues, but we were in dense forest cover with NO wind tonight) we had the “perfect storm” of combined crystal-clear sky, moon nearing full, and Jupiter parked a finger’s width from the moon, yet blazing its strong light right through the moon’s white-out drowning of all other stars near it. I wondered what could be so bright? Is there a kid being born by autogenesis in a manger somewhere? Should I pack up some balsam incense and head east?
Since Rudolph’s nose isn’t white, and the light was not moving, I decided to check with StarDate, who told me it was a special presentation of Jupiter. Just the gods playing around in the sky, as ever. Orion was swashing his buckle just below the moon, also standing out against that moon-washed sky of few visible stars.
The timing was great, too. The moon was not far from apex just when we set out for the walk, around 8:10 PM. That makes the light pierce down through the trees with less shadow and more light hitting the snow.
We have a complete snow cover that developed slowly over a period of three days, totaling about four inches accumulation. With temperatures staying low, the snow is staying put, and still sticking in billows to not only the balsam fir boughs, but to the upper surfaces of many maple and beech tree branches that don’t get hit by a lot of wind and/or sun. I love the way it puts a white lining on the branches that are otherwise just sticks all winter (unless glazed in ice).