Winter has arrived on
Here are a few telltale signs that Winter is officially here in the Cairngorms National Park:
1. The Nights are Drawing in
- The sun always sets a little earlier when you are surrounded by mountains and standing on the shores of Loch an Eilein you can see the sun set and the night roll in very quickly.
2. The Mornings are Frosty
- Sure defrosting the car every morning can be annoying but seeing the landscape covered in a sparkling layer of frost definitely makes up for it!
3. The Birds and Squirrels are out Foraging
- At this time of year you, whilst on your walks through the woods, might coincide with feeding parties of small birds. Coal tits may team up with crested tits, goldcrests and even a treecreeper as they forage for hibernating invertebrates. Long-tailed tits might be more exclusive in their family groups, also looking for invertebrates. Siskins forage in their own, compact flocks, often visiting alder trees to glean some seed from the cones still hanging in the branches. Chaffinches might well be foraging under beech trees to find some of the beech mast still lurking under the leaves and look carefully in case there is a brambling amongst them.
Squirrels are active throughout the winter, but may ‘hole’ up for a few days in their dreys if the weather is particularly foul, but on a crisp, frosty day they will be back out, actively feeding on the seed in pine cones or beech nuts.
4. The Coos are Enjoying the Snow!
- Highland Cows are built for this kind of weather and they thrive in it, the Farmer doesn’t enjoy it quite so much but it’s a good excuse for tea and cake so every cloud has a silver lining!
5. The Fire is Roaring in the Druie Cafe
- Speaking of tea and cake, the Druie Cafe has a fantastic selection of hot drinks and home baking. Making it the perfect place to thaw out after exploring the area.