Pink dawn over Huron Bay

Pink dawn over Huron Bay

Forget sitting under a spruce tree for the next 307 days!  Forget sitting still and growing roots….this morning dawned with high excitement and anticipation.  Do you know why?

The recent melt has compacted the snow nicely into nine to twelve inches of a heavy compressed white blanket.  Let the thermometer drop into the 20’s and the stage is set.  You can walk on snow!

No more snowshoes or skis necessary.  No more falling through drifts up to your knees or waist.  No more tripping and stumbling. 

Instead, like some wood elf, you can easily and nonchalantly stroll anywhere in the forest.  This usually only happens when the weather conditions are just right in February or March.  It’s one of the treats of mid-winter (or early spring, depending on who’s labeling).

This morning, after the second cup of coffee, I suddenly sat bolt upright on the couch.  Could it be?  Might the weather conditions be appropriate?  Faster than fast, I donned Grandma’s old snowmobile suit from the early 1970’s over my pajamas, pulled on boots, and sprinted outside.  YES!  It was a snow-walking morning, extraordinaire!

I practically danced back through the woods, marveling at this feat of acrobatic prowess.  Through brush and cedar swamp and thickets and ravines I scampered, heading for the Huron Bay.  Dawn waited for my arrival.  I ambled out on the ice, attempting to determine its appropriate safety.  It looked solid. 

Here’s a log or driftwood cleaved in two by nature’s forces.  Look at the sunrise staining the sky over the bay.  Isn’t it pretty?

Let's capture the sunrise through the cleft of a log

Let's capture the sunrise through the cleft of a log

I really wanted to walk all the way along the edge of the ice to a cedar covered abutment which jutted out.  In the past, eagles perched on the high trees off this point, surveying the landscape.  However, I’m a little bit nervous when it comes to crossing tentative ice.  I couldn’t determine if the ice looked simply gray and windswept…or if the ice leading into that inlet shined dark and menacing, eager to swallow the ignorant or naive hiker.   So I turned back towards home.

In such a good mood!  Delighted to be experiencing the magical stroll atop snow.  Knowing the afternoon melt would soon pull down any unsuspecting walker, insisting upon the logic of snowshoes once again.

I passed this small stream filled with open water:  a rarity at this time of year.

Stream meadering towards the bay

Stream meandering towards the bay

I felt in such high spirits upon returning home, I began to ponder why anyone every goes inside.  Yes, you heard that right.  Suddenly I began to imagine staying outdoors all day.  Why not?  Couldn’t we do everything outside?  Why did we ever decide to build houses anyway?  (The walk had obviously interfered with logical thinking….)

Suddenly hungry and desirous of breakfast, I quickly dished up a bowl of warm millet cooked just before the walk to the bay.  Diced up bananas and apricots, then sprinkled with coconut and pecans.  Opened the front door and….went outside on the porch to enjoy breakfast!  A morning picnic listening to the chickadees chatter.  Never did breakfast taste so yummy!

Breakfast on the front porch

Breakfast on the front porch