IF IT’S SNOWING IN THE WOODS AS WELL AS THE VALLEY, THEN DECEMBER WILL BE COLD

Just a couple more days until this is true. A couple of days til the lifts start operating – and til the ski season finally starts, which is when we really want to know: what will the weather be like today?

And what will the snow be like? Our analysis – based on the most important folk sayings.

There are a couple of ways to find out what the weather’s going to be like: read a weather forecast, look out of the window, or, if someone in your circle of acquaintances has recently undergone an operation for a slipped disc or bad knee, ask them what their joints have to say about it. We’re not making any claims for the quality of these forecasts (although we have to say that the accuracy of Uncle Walter’s knee is legendary!).

But to really know what the weather will be like in the weeks to come, you have to heed the straightforward folk sayings which have been handed down for many hundreds of years. In the Alpine region in particular, they hold true surprisingly often. And according to these sayings, there are many days in the next few weeks with a very special power of prediction for the weather conditions in the coming months.

The weather will be bad on Friday. This is because Friday is St. Klemens‘ Day, and: Trust not St. Klemens Day, he rarely shows a mild way.

There’s sadly no folk saying for Saturday, but Sunday 25 November, St Kathrein’s Day, is very important: “Whatever the weather on Kathrein, so it will be the whole winter long.“

If there’s not enough snow on Sunday, by the way, then there’s no real grounds for despair, we just have to wait five days – til 30 November, in fact: “If Kathrein’s day brings snow no more, on St. Andreas it will come for sure.” And it’s also not bad if it’s cold one day later: “If Eligius (1 December) is a harsh winter day, four months long the cold will lay.”

St. Nicholas‘ Day on 6 December has a special predictive power: “Rain on St. Nicholas, the winter will be hard and harsh.” If it doesn’t rain, however, then the saying goes: “Dry Nicholas, mild winter round the house.”

But perhaps we really shouldn’t take folk sayings too seriously. After all, for Thursday 22 November, Cecilia’s name day, they say: “If it snows on Cecilia’s day, the winter is not far away.”

This is nonsense, of course, at any rate in Paznaun. It doesn’t matter if it’s stormy or it snows – on 22 November, St. Cecilia’s Day, this year the winter is really not far away. That’s when the ski season starts, after all.