On clear autumn days, we get an excellent indication of how close winter is by looking out our window and taking notice of the snow line on our local mountains. Right now, the line is "descending" and is not too far above the elevation at which our house is located. This likely means that I'll be shovelling snow in a few days.
Of course, the snow line will have its "ups and downs" . In our area, being located more-or-less on the shores of the Pacific Ocean, weather patterns often bring a surge of warm and moist air from as far away as Hawaii, or even the South Pacific - which usually means rain. So this line is likely to move up and down in the coming weeks. Of course, as spring approaches, the line will "ascend" in a similar manner.
Well, regardless of what is heralded, it's just "plain beautiful" (is this an oxymoron?)