Spring flowers
autumn moon
summer breezes
winter snow:

With mind uncluttered
·  this is  ·
the finest season!

-Wúmén Huìkāi

Dawn treaders?

Some passages are made in the wee hours; others are revealed in waxing sun and rising breeze. Here a family of raccoons went out a-foraging after dark from their brushpile den,


while smaller mammals (including meadow vole, lower right) left lighter tracks before daybreak. Then the pattern was made noisier as warmed lumps of snow fell from the tree above.

Here, a vole nest is revealed when snow concealing its access maze sublimes in extremely cold but sunny weather:


Graupel above freezing records a fair impression of an evening departure; a prominence decorated from the west with later-deposited rime ice is illuminated at sunrise:


Following similar weather, but in early spring rather than midwinter, this line of exclamation points appeared:


Though the squirrel offered no testimony, the scribe was eventually revealed as a curved twig rolled along the impressionable surface by high winds.

A coyote seeking breakfast (but not, apparently, fish) left tracks in powdery snow that melted smooth by sunset:


And trails can render in the negative. Here a light fall of new snow over hard ice was selectively packed by another (or the same) canid; channeled winds then stripped the un-packed surrounding areas:


And a similar result may obtain when humans skate the gelid pond: