Although it melted VERY quickly, the 1st snow of the 2015/2016 winter was a doozy in the Highland/White Lake, Michigan area.
The snow and snakes were flying at the Chief Pontiac Trail Snow Snake Event, held on Sunday, January 29 this year. Everyone had great fun racing their snakes even as snow fell throughout the day at the Edsel Ford Barn.
The scouts sponsored the event which was supported by the Friends of Highland Recreation Area (FOHRA). This years’ event was in jeopardy of being cancelled due to lack of snow, but snow began to fall the weekend of the event and permitted filling of the wooden snow snake track for everyone to enjoy.
Snow snakes of all designs and colors were let loose at Highland State Recreation Area in White Lake, Michigan on Sunday.
The Edsel Ford Barn, which is being rebuilt by the volunteer organization Friends of Highland Recreation Area, was the backdrop for this years’ Snow Snake event…
Get outside and enjoy the outdoors this winter at Highland Recreation Area!
What an odd year for weather in Highland State Recreation Area so far! Not much snow, days of warm air above freezing, and days of short cold, but not enough to even freeze area lakes 100%. Rough season for ice fishermen. This week the temperatures finally got down to 2 degrees, and 2 to 4 inches of snow fell on Friday night at Haven Hill.
Above: The Carriage House on top of Haven Hill in a fresh blanket of snow on Saturday.
Families enjoyed the sledding hill at the circle lot yesterday. The grass is finally covered with snow. Hopefully it will last for a while.
Next weekend, on Sunday the 29th of January, the Chief Pontiac Trail committee will have snow snake races at the Edsel Ford Barn. Bring your pet snake and let him (or her) run free at the Edsel Ford Barn. Google to the Chief Pontiac Trail website for more info.
Above: The Gate House at Haven Hill at the entrance to Highland State Recreation Area.
Will the snow last? Well at the time of the writing of this post, the weather man is already calling for high temperatures back up near 50 degrees tomorrow (1/23/12) and a chance of thunderstorms. Get outside and enjoy the snow while it lasts!
So far we’ve had no big snows in Highland Recreation Area, Michigan this year… and with temperatures above freezing each day the favorite winter habitat for snow snakes is scarce! But rest assured that this years’ snow snake migration will arrive soon. To hold you over until the season really begins, I’ve assembled some snow snake information from around the web:
Snow Snake Lore – Some Terms and Descriptions:
Snow Snakes and Winter Sports: The nemisis of skiers and boarders in snowy climates the world over, snow snakes sometimes like to warm them shelves on steep snow-covered slopes. Their white color makes them impossible to see while skiing or snow boarding. Often the cause for unxplained wipe outs. – Urban Dictionary
Boot-Stealing Snow Snakes: A snake that travels under deep snow commonly in the area of upper michigan that causes you to loose your boot. The only way to catch one is to go to the deep snow in the middle of a field with a fishing net and six- pack of beer. – Urban Dictionary
“..that snow snake took my boot! Help me dig it out!”
Butt-Biter Snow Snakes: Some folks suggest that you always be very careful using the outdoor latrine while camping in winter. The snow snake is known to sometimes bite when it feels endangered.
“… be careful out there, a snow snake might bite you on the butt.”
2011/2012 Snow Snake Races Information
Information about the 2011/2012 Snow Snake events can be obtained by heading on over to the Chief Pontiac Trail website Here.
Also you can download the information flyer Here.
The snow snakes were flying in the cold and yet wonderful winter weather at the Edsel Ford Barn today.
FOHRA vounteers helped the Chief Pontiac Programs Committee to build the 2010 snow snake track and sold hot chocolate and snacks for the Scouts’ practice day.
“The Chief Pontiac Programs Committee is a volunteer group of scouters operating a hiking trail and other programs with outdoor experiences for all age groups. These programs are available for all school age groups and although primarily focused to groups related to the Boy Scouts of America (Tiger Cubs, Cubs, Webelos, Boy Scouts, Venturers and Explorers), all youth groups are welcome to participate. The Chief Pontiac Trail Program is administered through the Great Lakes Council of the Boy Scouts of America. located in Pontiac, Michigan.”
Have you ever heard of a “snow snake”? Do you think maybe it’s a unique reptile that survives Michigan winters slithering in the snow? Have you ever seen one?
The snow snake is actually the main object in a traditional Native American Indian winter game, wherein a wooden “snake” is sent hurtling down a track in the snow for maximum distance. Scout families from around the area participate in making their own “snake” and then running it down the snowy track.
Snow Snake Race Day; Highland State Recreation Area, 5200 Highland Rd, White Lake, MI 48383 – near the Edsel Ford Barn; Sun., January 30, 2011; 1pm—3 pm.
Come on out on January 30 and see the snakes!