CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Monday is the shortest day of the year and after today, days will start to gain daylight.
December 21 is the official start to winter, also known as the winter solstice and the shortest day of the year. Western Massachusetts will only have 9 hours, 5 minutes and 59 seconds of daylight. The surrounding days will have 9 hours and 6 minutes.
By the end of the month, daylight hours start increasing again, and we’ll finish December with 9 hours and 9 minutes.
On the winter solstice, this is when the earth is at its maximum tilt away from the sun. After that, the earth will slowly start tilting back, until it’s most forward tilt toward the sun on the summer solstice.
It’s that tilt toward and away from the sun that gives us the seasons, and adds daylight hours after the first day of winter, and removes daylight hours after the first day of summer.