Coldest days of winter coming to end

2017-01-19 15:54:40

Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ Mongolians count nine cycles of nine days during the peak wintertime cold. These are the 81 days starting from the Winter Solstice until the beginning of March. According to the lunisolar calendar, utilized in the lives of nomadic herders of Mongolia and land-farmers of Asia, the winter solstice falls on December 22, which has the shortest daytime and longest nighttime of a year.

The first three “nines”, also called the Young Nines, are the coldest period of the lunar year. The three nines continue until January 18.

The fourth nine days begin on January 19, following the extremely cold night, with the nighttime temperature dropping to -38 Celsius in Ulaanbaatar, the coldest capital city in the world. As the saying goes:

“On the first nine days (Dec 22-30), distilled vodka freezes

The second nine days (Dec 31-Jan 8), triple distilled vodka freezes

The third nine days (Jan 9-17), horns of three-year-old cow freeze and fall off

The fourth nine days (Jan 18-26), horns of four-year-old cow freeze

The fifth nine days (Jan 27- Feb 4), rice does not freeze

The sixth nine days (Feb 5-13), roads start to show

The seventh nine days (Feb 14-22), snow on hilltops starts to melt

The eighth nine days (Feb 23- Mar 2), splish and splash everywhere

The ninth nine days (Mar 3-12), warmth comes”.

The lunar new year of Mongolia – Tsagaan Sar - is falling on February 27 in 2017, welcoming the Year of the Rooster and new spring. Mongolians have been celebrating Tsagaan Sar as a ceremony for welcoming the warm season with family members being safe and sound and herds of livestock embracing new offspring.

The Kazakhs in Mongolia also celebrate a spring welcoming ceremony on March 22, the spring equinox, when the durations of daytime and nighttime equal.