And so it begins. It’s snowing in October. While it’s not “Snowmaggedon” or even particularly rare for it to snow this early in the season, the Farmers’ Almanac predicts we're in for a cold and moderately snowy winter. But it’s not supposed to be as harsh as it usually is.

I know what you’re thinking. The CEO of a tech company is citing a two-century old publication that forecasts the weather by using sunspot activity, tidal action, planetary position, and other “top secret” algorithms.

Growing up, I remember rolling my eyes whenever my parents or grandparents would quote the Almanac on matters related to the weather and planting. I mean, come on, how credible could that little yellow-paperback be?  It turns out that the Almanac has an 80 percent accuracy rate when it comes to forecasting major weather patterns (according to its editors anyway).

I’m a big advocate for embracing new technology. After all, Clearfield has built its reputation on being technological thought leaders and innovating fiber networks. But there’s also something to be said for homespun wisdom. I doubt if humanity would have made it this far without some good old-fashioned counsel passed down from generation to generation.

On the flip side of that coin, some of that folklore is just, well, far flung. For your reading enjoyment, here is some “snow lore” from the Almanac:​

  • If ant hills are high in July, winter will be snowy.
  • If the first week in August is unusually warm, the coming winter will be snowy and long.
  • For every fog in August, there will be a snowfall the following winter.
  • Squirrels gathering nuts in a flurry will cause snow to gather in a hurry.
  • As high as the weeds grow, so will the bank of snow.
  • A green Christmas = a white Easter.
  • If there is thunder in winter, it will snow seven days later.
  • See how high the hornet's nest, 'twill tell how high the snow will rest.
  • The higher muskrats' holes are on the riverbank, the higher the snow will be.

And my personal favorite today: If the first snowfall lands on unfrozen ground, winter will be mild.