Spring in Bolton Landing – Finally!

medium_392082834 What’s your first sign of Spring? Even if the snow is still on the ground, and the temperature is below freezing, there is always that one day when you go outside and you just know that winter is over – it might throw a last ditch storm or two before it leaves, but it can’t hold on much longer against the coming of spring. Everyone has their first signs of spring. Some are appearances: rock walls showing their tops above the snowbanks, parking spaces so recently covered with excess snow are visible again, the last leaves that didn’t get raked before the first layer of snow hit in December are showing up here and there.  I found my dog’s hook-out two days ago, it got buried with the first snowstorm, and I hadn’t seen it since. And sounds – I heard the creek behind my house this week – the ice is out enough for the the water to flow, and melting enough so the creek is making a lot of noise – making up for lost time in the quiet of an ice-covered winter.  Hearing the birds sing again is always welcome. My mother’s birthday was the day before the official First Day of Spring, and she was thrilled if she could see the first robin by her birthday – as soon as she spotted one she’d call her sisters to confirm that spring was officially here. And the “peepers” will be coming soon – everyone opens their windows to hear them sing at night. medium_11937788643Then I saw three geese flying north (really, guys, are you sure?), and spotted my first ducks on a bit of clear water under the bridge to the Sagamore Resort. The Sagamore has been open for weekends all winter, and will be full time at the beginning of May – their ground crews are out in force, cleaning up the debris of the winter storms so the landscaping will look as stunning as it usually does. Our Town of Bolton crews are out, too – cleaning the streets and trimming the dead growth from the flower beds, getting ready for the first blooms to come.small__1193059555 Motorcycles on the roads are another first sign of spring – there were an even dozen parked outside the Lakeside Lodge and Grille today, and reminded me that it won’t be long before Americade is here, and “Bikes and Bands” takes over the park. The craft fairs will begin,  the Farmers’ Market, the Antique Show, the Library’s book sale – I can almost see the lifeguards coming in! The days are getting longer by the minute. When Daylight Savings Time hits, you aren’t driving home from work in the dark, even if it is still dark in the morning – but that changes soon enough, the sun rises earlier every day now. The cars are cleaner without the slush and salt on the roads, and we can be reasonably sure the doors will open and the engines will start in the morning. The furnace isn’t running constantly, and that is a great thing for lotsmedium_4359445613 of reasons. And with all the snow this past winter, one of the first signs of spring has been to see the edges of the road emerge, and a bit of grass here and there, even if it is still brown – green-up time will be coming soon. My garden still has about a foot of snow as a cover. The snowbanks made by the plows are looking more put-upon and tired every day, and they are shrinking fast now that the temperature it is above freezing at night. One of my neighbors said that if his crocuses were trying to poke through, they still had about two feet of snow before they see daylight enough to blossom.  Another friend mentioned that the squirrels had been digging up her flower bulbs in the little patch of clear ground in her yard – a sure sign of spring for her! medium_113026022Our maple syrup farms are busy, gathering the sap and boiling it down for that wonderful amber brew. Up Yonda Environmental Education Center has a wonderful maple sugaring program open to the public. It won’t be long before our two Bolton traffic lights go from blinking to the regular green/orange/red – for the town residents, that is one of our first signs of the coming season. April sees the lake open up, and our summer businesses owners moving back into town. By May Millionaire’s Row is beginning to bustle. The canvas covers and plywood protectors come off the cedar trees, decorative bushes, and business signs. The medium_445356351marinas begin to uncover the boats, check their stock and open their windows and doors. The willow trees begin to turn that distinctive shade of yellow, and buds begin to form on the trees – leaves stretching out to meet the sun are not far behind – the hills and roadsides will be full green again. And the pussy willows are here – those first bouquets of spring. Snow on the trails is what we used to call “pethy” – too wet and soft with melt to hold skis now, yet still too deep to walk on. The snow is so much slower going in the woods – and it still looks lovely under the trees for these last few weeks. The ice is getting mottled – thinning and too dangerous to trust on the lakes. Ice fishermen have reluctantly put away their equipment, along with the cross country skiers and snowmobilers – and the hikers and dog walkers wait impatiently for the trails to clear. The deer and squirrels will have the woods to themselves for a bit of time. The trout will be awake in the streams soon, and hungry – good thing April 1 opens the season for freshwater fishing (trout, lake trout, landlocked salmon). Get out the high boots and hip waders – those mountain streams are cold! What are your first signs of spring?  Are you waiting impatiently, or are you longing for one last snowstorm – so beautiful on the trees? Penelope Jewellmedium_5744046665    ]]>