Mud Season in the Adirondacks

Mud Season in the Adirondacks

This time of the year for most people is known as Spring time. Doesn’t that sound lovely? It has a nice ring to it don't you think? Since moving to the Adirondacks 4 years ago I've learned that what is known as spring to most is known as mud season here in the ADKS. It just doesn’t have that same auditory appeal.

My first winter in the ADKS consisted of over 180 inches of snow, an amount my Alabama upbringing had NOT prepared me for by any means. Come March, my husband felt I had sequestered myself indoors long enough and suggested we take a ride and get out of the house. He asked me if I had ever been to a Tractor Supply, when I answered no, off we went.

We parted ways once inside the store and 20 minutes later he found me in the garden section holding several packets of seeds and looking at trowels.

“What are you doing?” he asked.

“Picking out flower seeds to plant” I said enthusiastically.

“When are you going to plant them?”

“Well next week is the first day of Spring and we always plant flowers around that time back home. I thought I would do the same here and carry on the tradition.”

“You’re not going to be able to plant anything outside until May or June.”

“JUNE?!?, That’s summer!”

“Maybe it is in Alabama but here in the ADKS the ground isn’t thawed and it’s not warm enough to plant anything outside during March or April and sometimes even May.”

“But the first day of Spring is next week!” I said not yet understanding.

“In the ADKS the first day spring is just a date marked on the calendar so you southerners know when to plant flowers but it doesn’t apply to what’s going on here. In the ADKS, spring is after the snow has melted, the ground has thawed and the mud has subsided and that doesn't happen until at least May."

Disheartened, I put my seed packets down, put my coat back on and walked out of the store where the cold wind nearly took my breath away. I climbed into the truck as I watched the snowplow drive by and tried to remember what I must have been thinking when I agreed to move to a place where mud season was an actual thing and spring had been reduced to the 4-7 days at the end that connected mud season to summer.

Currently this is my fourth mud season and I no longer dread it. I now look forward to it just as I used to look forward to spring in the south. I understand that mud season in the ADKS is a time of respite, a time of rejuvenation and a time of preparation.

It is when most year-round businesses shut down and most locals go on vacation. It is definitely the calm before the storm.

Mud season is when everyone waves at everyone else because it's one of the few times where everyone knows everyone else. The businesses that stay open during mud season are easy to get in to so we’ve been going out and trying new venues that we don’t normally have time to visit during the rest of the year.

However it is still difficult to get used to the drastic weather changes that happens on a daily basis. Yesterday it snowed most of the day. It rained non-stop the four days before that and tomorrow it’s supposed to be in the 70’s. When I woke up this morning it was 22 degrees and it is 67 degrees currently. A typical day during mud season in the ADKS!




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    C Cheney: April 09, 2017

    I have lived in Redfield, on the Tug Hill, for all of my 37 years of marriage. It’s the snowiest place east of the Rockies, with 350" of snow this past winter. We don’t have a " glamorous" label for our mud season, like the ADKS, but we sure have the mud! I loved this article. It made me smile and think back to my first winter/ springs here on the Tug! A trip to Tractor Supply was a highlight for you? Of course! What’s not to love about TS?

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