True signs of spring will rapidly appear the next several days over Upper Michigan.
First of all, the peeper will be heard. I have to believe that someone in the far southern U.P. heard them during our mild mid-March stretch. However, I got no reports. Once the snow leaves and there are a few warm nights we’ll get reports spreading from south to north across the Upper Peninsula.
I make such a big deal out of peepers because I consider them the “sentinels” of spring. They start their mating calls as soon as the swamps and lowlands are open. They tell us humans that the earth has thawed out after a long, hard winter.
Another sign of spring is lightning and thunder. There was actually some connected with our snowstorm last week. That was not a harbinger of spring!
Of course, April is a changeable month. We will see that demonstrated the next couple of days. Robert Frost penned this poem about the fourth month. He wrote it from the perspective of a New Englander but it certainly can apply to Upper Michigan:
“The sun was warm but the wind was chill.
You know how it is with an April day.
When the sun is out and the wind is still,
You're one month on in the middle of May.
But if you so much as dare to speak,
a cloud come over the sunlit arch,
And wind comes off a frozen peak,
And you're two months back in the middle of March.
Yes, we may be sent back to the “middle of March” before the month is over. However it will be mild the next several days. Enjoy.