Last weekend was the first “real” snow of the season when towns around the Finger Lakes got anywhere from 4-24” of snow. I refer to “real” snow as more than a dusting to an inch. All snow is real but not all snow is “real”. Real snow is measurable. It causes the weathermen to have something more interesting to report about, it causes kids to get excited about getting a snow day and it causes everyone else to get a little nervous about driving on the roads. It causes schools and businesses to have to close. Kids wear their pajamas inside out, flush an ice cube down the toilet, and put a spoon in the freezer, all in hopes they won’t have to go to school to make up an excuse as to why they didn’t do their homework. We leave the TV on to listen for the severe weather updates for snow, ice and wintry weather watches and warnings.
The first snow is always the one that catches everyone off guard. It leaves wives sending husbands to the garage to find the snow brushes, and it leaves many flying to Walmart or Wegmans or Lowes to get a shovel. It becomes hard to find windshield wiper fluid. Sometimes it even causes people to finally break down and hire a plow company or buy a snow blower. It means always making sure there are extra blankets, gloves and maybe some snacks in the car. Everyone flocks to social media to show how excited they are for snow or how much they hate snow and wish they could move to Florida or have it be summer again.
Even though by our social media posts it may not seem like it, snow is a very common thing in the Finger Lakes. While most of the pictures of the Finger Lakes that many people see are in the summer sun with green grass and green trees, the amount of time with snow covered ground and leafless trees is also quite significant. But this makes for so much more beauty to discover in the winter.
One reason I love snow is the unpredictability of it. You never REALLY know how much snow you will get. Because I do like snow I get really excited when the weatherman says a storm is coming, and I am always very disappointed when 12-14 inches ends up being a dusting to 2 inches.
There are all different types of snow in the Finger Lakes. Sometimes we get heavy wet snow, sometimes we get little light fluffy snowflakes, sometimes we get mini snowball snowflakes, sometimes we get half dollar sized puffy snowflakes, and sometimes we get a wintry mix. In any case, while towns and cities and the state usually are very good at staying on top of keeping the roads clear, sometimes it is impossible to keep up with mother nature and it requires patience, safe driving, or to stay off the roads.