Friday, February 02, 2007

The rodent better be wrong

We're in for an early spring, or so says the groundhog. Although I'm not sure ol' Punxsutawny Phil's prediction necessary applied to the entire continental United States.

I haven't heard whether the prairie dog saw its shadow, and I'm not sure there is an official shadow-watching prairie dog anyway.

This has been one of those usually unusual winters here in the West. When it freezes in the deserts of California and the sun shines for days on end in the rain forests of the Northwest in January, it gets hard to believe that a groundhog in some town with an X from back east knows his shadow from his elbow.

Things just ain't right.

Don't me me wrong, I love the sunshine and I am in much better spirits due to its bright, warming effects. But farmers and ranchers need rain and snow in the mountains to provide water for later this year.

Other than in Washington state, seasonal snowpacks are below normal levels in much of the West. The groundhog predicts an early spring, which, if correct, would mean an end to the rainy season, which has already been suspended. As much as I'd love to have some sunny shirt-sleeve weather from now through, say, the end of time, for the sake of the agriculture economy the fat furry rodent better be wrong.

We need rain and snow. Sooner would be better than later, thank you very much.

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