(PresidentialHill.com)- Last week, Punxsutawney Phil, Pennsylvania’s famous groundhog, did not see his shadow. So according to lore, that means six more weeks of winter which just so happens to coincide with the date winter officially ends.
For the record, a rodent is no more reliable at predicting the weather than most local weathermen. But let’s play along.
The furry weathervane emerged from his burrow at 7:25 am on February 2. And this year, unlike last year, the crowds were back to watch. In 2021, the typical crowds that greeted Phil were only there in virtual spirit since even Groundhog Day isn’t immune to COVID panic.
On Virtual Groundhog Day last year, Phil also predicted six more weeks of winter. However, it is unclear whether those were virtual weeks or in-person weeks.
According to folklore that dates back to 1887, if it is cloudy on Groundhog Day, it is a sign of an early spring since Phil can’t see his shadow on a cloudy day. But if it is sunny, and Phil can see his shadow, it means six more weeks of winter.
And on Wednesday, it was cloudy in Punxsutawney, PA.
In the last 135 years, Punxsutawney Phil has predicted six more weeks of winter more than 100 times, mostly because it tends to be cloudy in the winter.
Some are already crowing that Phil’s “prediction” has been proven correct, which doesn’t make sense since the “prediction” is six more weeks of winter and can only be proven correct after the six weeks are up.
But just as Phil’s annual work was done, a storm swept across the Midwest bringing unseasonably cold temperatures, snow, sleet, and freezing rain.
Unless this storm plans to stick around for the next six weeks, that doesn’t prove Phil right, now does it?
According to the Farmer’s Almanac, February is likely to have 57 percent fewer days of precipitation than January whereas March could bring significant precipitation including a late winter storm that will hit the Midwest and Eastern US.