Six more weeks of winter.
That is the prediction today after Punxatawny Phil saw his shadow in his annual appearance before thousands of Groundhog's Day revelers at Gobblers Knob in Western Pennsylvania.
The annual ritual is based on a tradition that holds if it is sunny and bright on Feb. 2. - the Christian holiday of Candlemas - winter will last another six weeks.
Legend says spring will come early if it is overcast.
The use of a groundhog is based on a German tradition of predicting the course of winter by whether or not a hibernating aninal - usually a bear or a badger - sees its shadow.
This morning, the Inner Circle of the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club roused Phil from his slumber and announced he had seen his shadow.
In some Christian traditions, Candlemas celebrates the day when the infant Jesus was presented at the Temple and is marked in the Roman Catholic Church by the blessing of candles.
As old English song also holds:
If Candlemas be fair and bright,
Come winter, have another flight;
If Candlemas bring clouds and rain,