Even though the fall leaf season isn’t over just yet, there’s many early signs that winter may be on the way. The fall leaves have hit their peak in many areas of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the weather is quickly beginning to cool down.
Many families are starting to plan for their Smoky Mountains winter vacation, so it’s time to start figuring out what you’ll need to pack so you can be prepared for your vacation. Here’s a few signs that winter is on its way, and the benefits that the cold winter can bring.
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According to the Farmers’ Almanac, there are many signs that winter is on its way. If you see any of these signs, winter is going to be colder and harsher than most seasons:
- Corn husks: Thicker than normal
- August: Many heavy fogs
- Sun and Moon: Frequent halos or rings forecast numerous snowfalls
- Acorns: Unusual abundance
- Woodpeckers: Sharing trees
- Geese and Ducks: Early arrival
- Monarch Butterfly: Early migration
- Cows: Thick hair on the back of their neck
- Raccoons: Thicker tails
- Mice: Eating ravenously into the home
- Crickets: Early arrival
- Spiders: Spinning larger webs and entering homes in greater numbers
- Pigs: Gathering sticks
- Insects: Marching a bee line rather than wandering
- Bees: Early seclusion within the hive
- Muskrate: Burrowing holes higher on river banks
- Woolly Caterpillars: Narrow orange band means heavy snow, fat and fuzzy means bitter cold
- Squirrel: Gathering nuts earlier than normal seasons
Benefits of a Colder Winter in the Smoky Mountains
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials do a wonderful job of keeping up with all of the insects and bugs that invade the trees in the park. With the colder winter weather, the number of tree-killing bugs may be greatly reduced. Many of the bugs can’t handle the cold or freezing temperatures, so they will die off.
Live a Longer Life
The cold winter weather can mean a longer life…if you’re a worm or a mouse, that is. Studies have proven that worms and mice who are exposed to colder temperatures, live a longer life. Studies have not yet proven the benefits for people, but it is likely that the same research applies.
Experience Snow in the Smoky Mountains
Not always, but often times, colder weather means more snow. Everyone loves being ‘snowed in’ to their cabin rentals, and we think this year is the perfect season to try it out if you haven’t yet! Pack up some hot chocolate and marshmallows, sit by the fire and enjoy the evening as you gaze out into the snowy winter weather covering the Smoky Mountains.
To find the best deal for your Smoky Mountains winter vacation, take a look at all of the Smoky Mountain cabin specials and discounts on Visit My Smokies’ website. We hope to see you in the Smokies soon!