This year I’ve had to go back to repeating the mantra I taught myself that first year we moved to Vermont when on March 31 we arrived to find our property buried under four feet of snow; spring comes in May.
I have finally gotten out shooting again after taking the first two weeks of April off. It was a half marathon of sorts those last few days before reaching the mid point of my journey. And this year March went out like a lion, and April came in like a lion; cold, cloudy, and where I live, on April 12 four inches of sleet. Over the past week I’ve gone out looking for signs of spring, I’ve concentrated my energies over in the Champlain Valley since it seems like there, winter arrives two weeks later and ends two weeks earlier than it does in Central Vermont.
While I normally hate shooting on bright sunny days, in April, the sunshine is a necessary evil as without it, the landscape is sienna and umber; aka straw tan and mud brown. At least in those milder areas the grass is beginning to green up, and yesterday I even started seeing daffodils and some of the early flowering trees getting ready to bloom. The air was filled with that sweet smell of, well “natural fertilizer” and the back roads were bustling with tractors as farmers were getting out into their drier fields preparing them for the year’s planting.
We have had a couple of warm sunny days in April, but for the most part, on every trip I’ve made, I’ve felt whipping cold winds and frozen fingers. My goal to stay on track with this project is to visit at least twenty-one towns each month. I started April with a surplus of five, I’ve visited ten so far this month, and while that is short of my goal, I may just wait until it looks and feels like spring before heading out again, when the foliage finally returns after six months of bare trees, and the green returns to Vermont’s landscape.