The weather finally broke yesterday. After weeks of abnormally low temperatures, frightening wind chills, and grey skies, the sun broke through, the winds died down and the thermometer rose above freezing. We threw on a couple extra layers and headed outside for a walk in the woods. All along the paths we met other folks, cheerfully greeting each other with exclamations of relief at the break from the cold.
It's been too long and is very unusual for our area.
Normally perched in the shadows, this barred owl was taking full advantage of the sun, warming herself in front of excited hikers who tip-toed and whispered quietly so as not to scare her off.
In all my years here I've never seen the lakes and creeks freeze over like they have this month. It made me laugh to see the ducks and geese fly onto the lake, only to skid across the ice until they could come to a stop.
Finding the tiniest sliver of water in the middle of the lake, the geese all crammed into the rivulet while the more curious ones strolled nearby.
A red-bellied woodpecker takes care of a little home improvement
now that the winds have died down.
The mist from the falling waters created gorgeous ice sculptures. Since the temperatures remained low night and day, the forms built up over time. So pretty!