It makes everything look more beautiful.
Shyla and I enjoyed playing in the forest in the light of the rising sun.
On our way to see the sunrise this morning, we managed to ride right past at least two moose without me seeing them. The Runner wasn't far behind, and he spotted them. Shyla and I were lucky that they let us pass. I'm sure that Shyla was aware of them but she has proven that she is *never* going to chase a moose. She wants to stay as far away from them as she can after our scary experiences.
The Mama Moose, this year's calf, and last year's calf ("Lefty") have been living in a small radius around our house. I see the cavities in the snow where they sleep each night. Can you imagine being able to sleep in the snow in sub-freezing temperatures night after night? Amazing.
The sheer number of moose that I've seen so far this autumn and winter (at least different six individuals) close to our house is incredible. I find myself wondering if our state will end up regretting their decision to introduce moose here almost 40 years ago. The population has gone wild, primarily because they have no natural predators. A mountain lion can't take down a healthy adult moose.
A comparison of how small a mountain lion is compared to a moose explains why. Here's a photo of a mountain lion passing my trail camera.
Now, here's a moose passing the same camera, mounted in exactly the same place. The moose absolutely dwarfs the mountain lion. I cannot imagine a mountain lion killing a healthy moose.
Our wildlife authorities have repeatedly refused to help wolves establish themselves in our state. Wolves, working as a pack, do prey on moose. The moose population explosion in our neck of the woods has me pondering what will happen to our ecosystem in the future. Will the moose eat every last aspen and willow? I'm sure that there will be cries for more human hunting of moose but, personally, I'd prefer having wolves here.
Back to less serious stuff - Shyla and I truly enjoyed sunshine today - after a couple of gray days. It was super cold but the sun rays were warm. The moose didn't reappear so we had a very relaxed outing.
It was my favorite kind of winter day - below freezing, sunny, and a bluebird sky! The sun made the snow crystals glitter.
I hope that all the people in the path of the east coast snowstorm can find a moment to see the beauty in the snow and to enjoy the way that life slows down when Mother Nature takes over. It's a more regular occurrence here - one that we've learned to enjoy, tucked warmly next to our crackling fire.