Cold air swirls southward from Canada on a regular basis this month. Bitter artic blasts will last a few days at a time as ocean/atmosphere patterns settle across the rest of the states. Most weather reports of any depth will mention Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation, North Atlantic Oscillation and Pacific Decadal Oscillation. While these patterns travel over the upper half of the country, wetter than usual conditions will be the norm. When wet meets frigid air, snow results. Hence, January will be spotted with above-normal snowfall for northern Ohio and rain/sleet mixes for the southern half. It is after all, winter in Ohio.
Native Americans called January full moon Cold Moon, Snow Moon or Hungry Moon. The month is a lean one for all wildlife. Today we might call it Great Moon of Change, especially if we are watching the world front for monumental changes in politics, communications and society as a whole.
The only thing Mr. Greengate caught last month was chilblains from not wearing gloves during the coldest fishing trip he ever undertook. He admitted that winter fishing is not his cup of tea. For a few weeks he has not ventured further than the wood pile for enough lumber to keep the home fire burning. His hands will recover but his ego may take until summer to come to grips with his elderly status among his fishing buddies. He can’t decide between sitting out the big fishing trip set for January 9-16 or taking a chance on chilblains and frostbite. Meanwhile, the opossum is embedded under the barn, the local hawk claimed two more mourning doves and the neighbor’s horses have frost-covered coats as they play in the snowy pasture.
Before the snow covered everything, four corner stakes were driven in at the garden. It is good to see where spring activity will take place-it gives a kind of hope to imagine lettuce and onions greening up. For now, garden produce, canned and waiting for just this type of weather, is incorporated nightly in meals. Often eaten by the fireplace, carrots and tomatoes taste like the summer felt-warm, mellow and soothing.
Outside the Yard
Dressing warmly, in layers, will help a person enjoy outdoor activities during January. Nestled in the woods in Geauga County you’ll be pleasantly surprised to find Ma & Pa’s Gift Shack log cabin. The cabin was built in the 1820s. Horse Drawn Sleigh Rides are the big winter draw. Hot chocolate, maple coffee and homemade bakery items stave off hunger and cold. Call Ma at 440-548-5521 for more information, times and cost. Visit online at www.maandpas.com.
If you’re one of the many that miss weekly or monthly fishing trips during the winter, don’t despair. Head for the Mid America Boat Show, January 12-16, 2017 in Cleveland, Ohio. Their website indicates, “Great rendezvous point for all your boating buddies.” Call 440-899-5009 or go to www.ClevelandBoatShow.com for more information and cost.
If you are inclined to stay by the home fires, take a look at www.takemefishing.org website for a truly amazing information packed, photograph packed, colorful website. You can spend hours on this spot, scoping out all sorts of insight into fishing in Ohio or any other state.
If you’re in the Hamilton, Ohio area on January 20-21, check out the Ice Fest Hamilton. Held in the downtown area, this festival uses 200 blocks, 40 tons of ice for the many ice sculpture contests and demonstrations. It features a Technicolor Ice Walk. Call 513-895-3934 for more information or check out their page on Facebook. www.facebook.com/2017Icefest or Google Ice fest 2017 Hamilton, Ohio.
Word of the Month
Oscillation: moving back and forth, alternating as in water and air patterns that influence weather. Also, humans can oscillate or be indecisive, shillyshallying or wavering in their resolve.
Quote of the Month
“Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home.” Dame Edith Sitwell, British poet/critic. 1887-1964