I am trying to love winter.
Maybe not love love it, but at least appreciate that the season of bleak and cold can bring beauty.
I mean, it’s no summer, that’s for sure. Warm breezes, sultry evenings, flip flops, swimming in the swimming holes, finding stray sand in my wallet for days after a trip to a Long Island beach…these are the things I look forward to in a season. Having to put on six layers before the coat and then a pair of unwieldy winter boots that never seem to dry out…these are things I dread in a season.
Even for a die-hard winter hater like me, it’s hard not to find some scenic loveliness in the Hudson Valley and Catskills. Listening to the ice flows crack and wash ashore on the Hudson River is deeply peaceful to me. The Esopus Creek that passes close by to where I live becomes frozen solid when the temperatures drop, making it fertile hunting grounds for ice fisherman. Thick, crystal clear ice provides a glimpse into nature’s wintery stasis.
A long stretch of sub-zero temperatures ended with a climb to nearly 60F last week, and the extremes brought with them some haunting views of the Hudson River. Ghostly mist-shrouded barges, boats, and buoys, even lighthouses.
And, just when it seems like spring might come early, a fresh 8 inches of snow softly falling overnight reminds me that winter hasn’t finished with us quite yet. Best to settle in and embrace the impossible quiet a new blanket of snow can bring, and throw on an extra pair of socks before you head out.
Gundlach Bundschu Winery and Vineyards