There will be Snow

Ideas for snow play if you've run out this season

Two of the reasons I moved to Vermont are because I love northern landscapes and I hate being hot. The trees, the mountains, the birds, the snow. The snow. By this time every year I am done with the snow. Growing up in Virginia, March meant Spring. My favorite season. Right now in Virginia the trees are budding, the birds are singing, the daffodils are already up. Not here.

Two Nor’easters past and another is potentially on the way. If you are like me and are looking for more ideas of things to do in the snow, here are 5 of my favorite activities to take full advantage of snow in March.

  1. Snowflakes. Catch snowflakes on paper and examine them up close. Keep pieces of black construction paper in the freezer until the next snowfall. Draw your favorite pattern. How do the shapes change with different temperatures? 
    Photo: Audubon Vermont
  2. Build a quinzee or other snow shelter. The wet snow of March is particularly good for packing. With school groups we build shelters based on a simple quinzee, or dug-out pile of snow. For it to work well and be stable, you must let the snow settle, ideally overnight. Make a big pile, go to sleep, and the next morning start digging it out.
    Photo: Audubon Vermont

3. Water futures. My friend likes to say that those of us in cold places are buying stock in water futures when we get a big snow storm (which is definitely only true in parts of the country, and climate change certainly has something to say about this). But how much water do you get from melted snow? Fill up some containers, make predictions, and find out!

4. Tracking. It’s amazing to see the zig-zag of activity crossing your yard when it is covered in snow. It gives us the opportunity to see who has been where and what they were up to. I am amazed at the number of squirrels and birds that visit my apartment steps seeking birdseed and shelter in the middle of town. When I am out walking dogs, I finally have a chance to see whose trail they are sniffing. Take a tracking class, get yourself a good, local guide, and go outside!

5. Come to Sugar on Snow! Fortunately, March is also sugaring season, and the best thing about snow is putting hot maple on it. Sugar on Snow Parties at Audubon Vermont are happening during the Vermont Maple Sugar Maker’s Association’s Open house weekend, March 24th and 25th. Come on out!

Looking for more ideas?

Lucky for you the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies created a list of 101 things to do outside to beat the winter blues. Check it out here:

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