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Here we are again – another month has come and gone. Now that we’ve flipped themarmot in the alps calendar to the month of February, we are anxiously awaiting Phil’s prediction about the upcoming spring, but is there a way to beat him to the punch?

Yes! We think we know of a shortcut. Before we had Punxatawney Phil, we had the Old Farmer’s Almanac, which may be a better resource than our furry friend – but we’ll let you be the judge.

Robert B. Thomas started the Old Farmer’s Almanac back in 1792. The Almanac records and predicts astronomical events such as the rising and setting and setting of the sun, tides, weather and other unusual phenomena. According to the almanac, Thomas would use a complex series of natural cycles to devise a secret weather forecasting formula. (Today, the formula is housed in a locked black box in the Almanac offices in Dublin, New Hampshire.)

Traditionally, the almanac was said to be 80 percent accurate, but in press materials, the almanac claimed to 96.3% accuracy for its 2016 predictions of a “bleak and biting winter.” Meteorologists and weather experts don’t buy it, but we think it’s worth a look!

The 2018 Long Range Weather Report for the Midwest says,

Winter will be warmer than normal, with the coldest periods in late November, early and late December, early January, and early February. Precipitation and snowfall will be below normal, with the snowiest periods in mid- to late December and early to mid-February. April and May will be cooler than normal, with near-normal precipitation. 

From the sound of this report, we don’t anticipate an early spring, although the weather report doesn’t discuss March in any detail. Here at Lions Pride, we are guessing that Punxsutawney Phil will not see his shadow tomorrow, but we certainly hope that we’re wrong. Do you think we’ll see six more weeks of winter?

Wishing all of us an early spring!