We’ve entered our fifth month of the northwest gray and rainy season and I think I am starting to grow moss in my beard. It feels like I have not seen the sun since October, but it is easy to forget about the sunny we have enjoyed.
Though our rainfalls have not been record-breaking this year, the snowpacks in the mountains sure are. During my first winter here two years ago, I never saw snow in the Coast Range. This year, they are measuring record amounts at surprisingly low elevations. It is hard to even imagine how much snow has buried Mount Hood and the other Cascade peaks. As a native Montanan and former skier, I am still getting used to hearing about epic conditions at the local ski areas while looking outside and seeing green grass and flowering trees. Back home, we did not need ski reports, we just looked out our window and knew what conditions would be like on the hill.
In addition to flowering trees, singing birds remind us daily that it is in fact spring. This morning, the local robin started his day of singing at 4:30 and an orange-crowned warbler sang from the tree near our window minutes before our alarm clock went off. I think I should train him to replace the clock.
Yesterday, Andy and I braved the rain and walked south of the clover field to a small forest patch surrounded by condos. We did not find any nests in the patch but, in the field, we did hear our first savannah sparrow songs of the year. Savannahs are the only grassland sparrows we have in this part of the state, so it is always great to hear their super-high pitched song. Maybe they should be called "Soprano Sparrows"!