The last several weeks have been quite snowy and stormy throughout Colorado, especially on the Front Ranger where we live in Nederland. After a snowstorm the night before, I was driving along the Peak to Peak Highway, and couldn’t help but marvel of the beauty of the high peaks covered in snow set against an intensely blue sky. The term, “Bluebird Day” came to mind immediately and I felt it impossible not to stop the car along the side of the road, to take a moment and take in all that beauty, as well as snap a few photos.
Before moving out west to the mountains of California, I had never heard the term, “Bluebird Day”, much less have any understanding or appreciation for what it was. But in both California and Colorado, Bluebird Days are actually quite common. Climatologists estimate that Colorado alone sees almost 300 days of sunshine, and given that a lot of those days follow snow storms that bring on average 150 inches of snow per winter to Nederland, we do get to experience our fair share of Blue Bird Days. The strict definition of a Bluebird Day is a clear, sunny day after a snow storm the night or day before. Skiing on a Bluebird Day is a prized experience, as it means lots of powder with exquisite views. Bluebird Days also seem to bring a clarity to the view that I rarely experience in summer. On Bluebird Days, I can see for great distances, sometimes even 100 miles. The blue of the sky is the most brilliant hue imaginable, perhaps because of the clarity of the air. I’ve noticed here in Colorado, that because of our frequent storms and strong winds, that air pollution seems nonexistent during these Bluebird days, where in summer, the smog seems to take over, especially on the Front Range where most of the state’s population is.
No matter how cold the temperatures, it’s hard not to want to be outside on a Bluebird Day. Even if I can’t go skiing that day, it’s nice just to take the dogs for a short walk, to admire winter’s beauty. The other thing I frequently notice is how the sunlight on the snow just seems to make it sparkle, with the sun’s rays glinting off the top of the new fallen snow. With March and April often bringing some of our heaviest snowfall, here’s hoping that Mother Nature brings many more Bluebird Days in the weeks to come.