Who does the Hudson Valley trust more, meteorologists or a fuzzy caterpillar?

While walking the halls of Townsquare Media of the Hudson Valley this morning, I came across a fuzzy-looking caterpillar. Many of us know this bug is called a Woolly Bear, but did we know there is a weather-predicting feature to the bug?


The National Weather Service shares the folklore behind the Woolly Bear winter predictions explaining "The amount of black on the woolly bear in autumn varies proportionately with the severity of the coming winter in the locality where the caterpillar is found."

Woolly Bear Predicts Harsh Hudson Valley Winter?

They go on to explain further that the longer the black band is, the longer, colder, snowier, and more severe the winter season will be. The brown band on the Woolly bear represents the milder parts of the winter according to folklore. But the position of the bands is supposed to indicate what part of the season will be the harshest, the Nation Weather Service states:

 The position of the longest dark bands supposedly indicates which part of winter will be coldest or hardest.  If the head end of the caterpillar is dark, the beginning of winter will be severe.  If the tail end is dark, the end of winter will be cold. In addition, the woolly bear caterpillar has 13 segments to its body, which traditional forecasters say correspond to the 13 weeks of winter.

So let's take that statement into consideration and compare it to this photo of a Woolly Bear found inside Townsquare Media of the Hudson Valley:


I'm no Woolly Bear expert, so I can't determine which part of winter will be the harshes: Is it the beginning or the end?!

If we follow the Woolly Bear folklore, at some point we will be experiencing a harsh winter, which is not really surprising. We're used to winter weather in the Hudson Valley.

Old Farmers Almanac Winter Weather Predictions for NY 2024

Just to make sure we cover all of our winter weather predictions, we took a look at the Old Farmer's Almanac to see what they had to say about the 2024 winter weather season.

It sounds like they're on board with what the Woolly Bears prediction writing:

"The 2024 Old Farmer’s Almanac predicts snow, seasonable cold, and all of winter’s delights! This winter’s forecast will surely excite snow bunnies and sweater lovers alike, promising a lot of cold and snow across North America,"

Read More: New York State Must Brace For More Snow Than 'Normal' This Winter


So when should New York expect its first snowfall? Here are some stats to prepare you for the winter:

The Dates When New York State Typically Sees Its 1st Snowstorm

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Gallery Credit: Scott Clow

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