First day of winter Google doodle marks Northern Hemisphere’s Winter Solstice 2016

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As usual, Google is marking the first day of the Winter and Summer Solstice — depending on which half of the globe you live — with a doodle.

Both doodles were designed by doodler Nate Swinehart and include animated images of a rock family.

For the winter doodle, the rocks are covered with snow around a tree that has lost its leaves for the season. The Winter Solstice doodle on the US home page leads to a search for “first day of winter” and has the usual sharing icon to post the image on social feeds or send via email.

Winter Solstice 2016 Doodle

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The Summer Solstice doodle includes the same rock family, but in a much warmer setting. The doodle on Google’s home page in Brazil leads to a search for “Solstício de Verão” — which translates to Summer Solstice.

Summer Solstice 2016 Doodle

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From the Google Doodle Blog for the Winter Solstice doodle:

The solstice is named for the brief time when the sun appears to pause its movement across the sky. At that moment, the tilt and rotation of the earth shifts our view of the sun’s direction from southward to northward, causing it to hang momentarily suspended.

It may be officially winter here, but at least the days will start getting longer again.

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