With the temperature at 65 degrees (F) and some breaks in the overcast, this evening is a vast improvement over the past month and a half or so. I was starting to think that the sun was a mythological phenomena and have been continuously scanning the horizon expecting to see a gray-bearded old man steering a large wooden boat full of animals my direction.
According to the forecast at the Weather Underground web-site tomorrow should be a very nice day, but then the clouds and rain will be returning through the foreseeable future.
The patches of yellow leaves in the surrounding birch and aspen trees are growing larger and more vivid, and more of the underbrush is showing signs of 'rust'. These seasonal changes seem to be at least 2 weeks early to me. The fireweed outside the door of my security building haven't yet bloomed to the tops of their stalks, though they are progressing that direction. Local Native wisdom is that the first snow will fall six weeks after the fireweed blossoms reach the top. Thus far in my experience it has proved reasonably accurate.
I haven't seen any large animals in the vicinity of my place of employment, but there is a lot of small animal activity. Red squirrels and snowshoe hares have been moving around a lot during the evenings, probably hoping to find enough chow to fatten up a bit before the tougher times come around. I've also seen a lot of action from the local owls as they are also watching the smaller animals, though for a more gastronomical purpose.