"We like camping better!" --Raymond Alexander Kukkee

view of the north shore Critter Pond, KOA Canandaigua NY [c] 2009 jcb

What's YOUR first sign of spring? For us, it's the arrival of summer!

[Back on March 1st, I heralded the arrival of spring with a post about the Camping World 300. At the time, we had just finished suffering our last blizzard of 2010. Since then, we've had a snow-free March (first ever) and broken two decades-old high-temp records with new highs near 90 degrees. ]

With the early arrival of summer in Upstate NY, what signs did we have that spring was here?

Before spring began, right after our big snow, I asked my Facebook friends what they saw as "first signs of spring." Julie Sawyer Helms offered, "crocus!" and Becca Badgett added "...Helleborus budding and daffodils pushing through the soil!"

Suzanne Ormond mentioned the ever-popular robin. Doreen Martel saw some blue jays. Carroll Jean Yorgey went out for a walk and didn't want to come back. Glory Lennon and Janet Collinge lent observations and discussion. Tracy McKay brought in her cat, shedding hair all over the place. Donna Carroll Batton claims that "Dairy Queen opening" brings spring for her. Teresa Depoy agreed that the sound of baby birds was a sure sign of spring.

As I'd noted earlier, the arrival of NASCAR's Nationwide and Sprint Cup races puts me in the springtime mood. Even better, however, is the end of the snow and the beginning of truly warm days. Some years, I've watched the Masters Tournament (PGA), feeling wildly jealous of the brilliant shades of green and the blossoming flowers. This year we've already had days correctly described as HOT; and everything here is blooming early.

Certainly, spring has arrived disguised as summer, here in western NY. Much earlier than usual, we've attacked both front and back gardens. The daffodils and tulips are surging skyward, already in bloom. It's time to mow the lawn. Last week we came this close to seeing our first couple of Perfect Camping Nights -- two degrees warmer overnight, and we'd have marked them down.

What's my one and only, "it's really spring now" sign of spring? The arrival of RV's on the road! I'm not sure where they're going, since the campgrounds aren't open yet, but for me that does it. Seeing a big old Class A motorhome rolling down the highway gets my camping blood pumping. The campers are OUT! That's when I know it's really spring.


Is there one sure sign of the season, unique to your world? Robins or campers? NASCAR? Warm days? What works for you?


  1. Worms on the sidewalk after the first spring rain.

  2. Anonymous11:45 AM

    In the Mojave Desert, the first signs of spring appear in mid-late February with sightings of robins, and early lavender blooms on the popular flowering plum trees.