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D&D 5E What is Barovia like in the winter?

Seeing as Barovia is a Romanian analogue, what rarely takes into the account that it would most likely have a harsh winter.

How will that change Curse of Strahd and the various encounters that occur?

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Goblin Queen
Well, if you go with the land of the mists operating under nightmare logic, I imagine Barovia would be locked in a perpetual state of late autumn. Winter is always just around the corner, everyone is constantly worried if they’re going to be able to gather enough stores to last them through to the spring that will never actually come. It’s always been a rough harvest, and there never seems to be quite enough to go around.

Totally with @Charlaquin on this one. Barovia isn't a real place; it's a shadow realm created by the Dark Powers for its playthings. Most denizens in Barovia are shadows of people, without souls, and likely Strahd knows this and can be so callous and harsh to them because he knows the nature of his prison (and he thinks, if he does it right, he can escape). While Strahd controls the Land, and thus the weather/fog, I don't see the Dark Powers allowing seasons. Seasons represent change, and hope. That's antithetical to Ravenloft. It's a place of despair (hence the Ravens trying to do small things like wine to brighten people's days).

This does bring up a good, creepy point. If you have someone in the group who knows farms, crops, etc., they might come to the conclusion that there isn't enough to go around. The people will shrug and simply say that's what traders are for, from other lands, yet the PCs never seem to see any...

The thing is you can have unpredictable weather but still have consistency. Hell, I live in a country where I've seen snow in every month, but the chances are mostly improbable in the summer. I'd almost mix in a bit of russian folk tales into the mix. hell we already have baba yaga, then mix in some of the unclean (essentially unseelee that draw temptation).

Romanian Myths, Monsters, and Heroes - The Incredibly Long Journey just to see what falls out.


Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
It's a demiplane, one that already replaces many of the rules of a natural world. It doesn't have seasons.


In earlier editions, the Balinoks became utterly impassable due to the heavy snows blanketing the mountains, and the wolves became even more dangerous from hunger. But as everyone else has said, it might be better to just stick with the nightmare logic of the place.


The books don't go into extreme detail, except to say that the mountains become choked with heavy snows, and that the winter seasons make the people and wolves lean with hunger and desperation. These are mostly one sentence blurbs. There is also a line about winter coming and going for several years as Strahd studies with Azalin.


Seeing as Barovia is a Romanian analogue, what rarely takes into the account that it would most likely have a harsh winter.
If you want to know what Barovia is like in the winter, read the Adventurer's League Season 4 adventures, particularly DDAL04-02, "The Beast." They are set during winter.

EDIT for more detail: Snow is mentioned in several of the adventures. "The Beast" features a severe oncoming storm at the beginning of winter. The adventures are set in a small village north of Vallaki, and a major plot point of the season is how (due to various misfortunes) the village may not have enough food to get it through the winter.
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