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Candlemas Day: Newfoundland Weather Lore

Boyd's Cove, Newfoundland It’s just as well that we don’t have groundhogs in Newfoundland - we don’t think much of their opinions. Groundhogs ( Marmota monax ) are also known as woodchucks and can be found in parts of Labrador .  February 2nd is Groundhog Day in much of the rest of the continent - a day steeped in weather lore. According to the tradition, if the groundhog emerges from his den on February 2nd and sees his shadow, there will be six more weeks of winter weather. Put another way, if it’s sunny on February second there is more winter in store, if it’s a grey day, the worst of winter has passed. Despite not having groundhogs on the island, and about a 0% chance of winter ending in mid March, many school kids will still mark the occasion. Six More Weeks of Winter? Historical averages for Gander, NL It really doesn't matter what any groundhog says, Newfoundland's winter weather is going to stick around well beyond the six-week 'best case scenario'

A bridge in Tennessee and a crater on Mars have been named for Gander, NL.

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I don't need last names to know who Toni-Marie and Eddie are, and I can find my way from Happy Adventure to Misery Point in the fog. My morning comes a half hour earlier and any day without ‘RDF’ is good. I’ve seen a mummer, tasted toutons and know that bakeapples don't grow on trees because I’m a product of this place.

Photos on Flickr