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Stardew Valley: What To Do In Winter [Least Busy, Most Fun SDV Season]

Stardew Valley: What To Do In Winter If you’re wondering what to do in winter in Stardew Valley, let’s be clear that it is the most underrated season in the game. This is because many players fail to realize how much they can achieve in terms of farm upgrades, fishing, mining, collecting supplies and so on in these 28 days. In case you like indulging in the social aspects of SDV such making friends with the townsfolk, this is the perfect time for that too.

What To Do During Winter?

Firstly, there are three important things you absolutely should not skip doing during this season, specifically in year 1.

#Complete Winter Foraging Bundle

The last seasonal foraging bundle you’ll have to finish for the Community Center will be this one. Winter Root and Crystal Fruit can be earned as drops in the mines any time of the year. The former can also be found by tilling soil or digging up those Artifact Spots (or Worm Spots) in winter. The same goes for Snow Yam.

You can also find Crystal Fruit and Crocus by foraging around in winter. All four are required to complete the Winter Foraging Bundle which offers Winter Seeds as the gift for finishing it. Even if you don’t care about earning these seeds for planting on your farm, you do need to tackle this bundle in order to restore the Community Center with the final goal of having your Greenhouse repaired.

#Unlock Secret Notes

Shadow Guy Magnifier Glass Giving a loved gift to a Pelican Town resident is a great way to get freebies that can help you progress in Stardew Valley. But how you do find out who likes what? Also, how are other players figuring out stuff such as ways to improve their luck and energy permanently, where Easter Eggs are buried, hidden quests and so on?

Hint: Secret notes. SDV currently has 25 secret notes concealed all over the place. And the only way you can access them is to find the mysterious Shadow Guy. You can do this by exiting your farm any time between 6am and 4pm during winter. ‘A Winter Mystery’ quest and cut scene get triggered. All you have to do is follow the footsteps in the snow to the playground next to the Community Center.

Our strange and mysterious denizen will be hiding in the bush behind the two benches. Interact with the bush to have this odd creature pop out, apologize for stealing something and hand over the item he took. The magnifier glass will be added to your wallet. Once you’ve acquired it, secret notes with vital clues will start popping up while you’re occupied in various farming, fishing, mining and similar activities.

While the quest can only be triggered in the winter, you can go to the bush any time of the year to claim your magnifying glass since it’s not time-sensitive. In case you’re not sure whether you started the questline or not, just check your journal to see if A Winter Mystery has been added to the list.

#Upgrade Farming Tools

Copper Axe Until you repair Willy’s boat and sail to the volcano mines, adding enchantments to your implements will not be an option. But you can still upgrade all your tools from regular (to copper to steel to gold) up to iridium quality in order to increase their efficiency and reduce the amount of energy required to use them. Once you’ve provided the money and metal bars to Clint the Blacksmith, it takes at least two days until he returns the implements.

READ: Is Stardew Valley Cross-Platform? [Explained]

It’s unlikely that you’ll have upgraded all your tools to their maximum potential by end of your first fall season since you’d have to do so in between tilling, having your sprinklers set up, planting seeds, mining for the required materials, chopping wood and so on. This makes winter the best season to upgrade tools you haven’t leveled up yet because farming and clearing your land can be skipped completely.

Make Preserves, Wines & Other Artisan Goods

Make Wine If you don’t sell all your crops during the year, they can be processed in kegs and turned into wine and other more expensive artisan goods, massively increasing your ROI on them. The same goes for foraged produce — stick them in the preserves jar (for jams, jellies and pickles) or in the keg to get much more for the finished products than the original fruit or veggie would have fetched.

ALSO SEE: Stardew Valley Strange Capsule | Guide To Unlock Easter Egg

But just remember to pick the Tiller profession at Level 5 so that you can choose Artisan at Level 10, the ideal combination when you want your farm to be uber-profitable. The Artisan skill gives you 40% more gold for processed products like cheese, wine, mayonnaise, oil, cloth and so on.

If you haven’t saved any of your crops for processing, look around you. Crystal fruits have a minimum sell price of 150g each. It can be put in a keg to earn a base rate of 450g. You could also stuff it in a preserves jar to fetch a maximum of 490g for the jelly. The newspapers you get while fishing can be placed in the Recycling Machine to get cloth (10% chance) which fetches up to 658g.

Raise Farm Animals & Upgrade Farm Buildings

Raising Animals Winter is a smart time to raise animals if you haven’t started already since Marnie sells you the young ones and you won’t have much farming to do anyway. By the time spring comes, your pigs will be grown enough to dig up those valuable truffles, your cows will be ready for milking, your goats and rabbits will be giving you wool, and your birds will start laying eggs.

You should usually have a decent amount of savings once winter rolls around. If you don’t, you can earn more money easily by fishing, making artisanal goods and growing stuff in your greenhouse or on Ginger Island. Use the gold to upgrade your farm buildings, and add auto grabbers, more animals, heaters and auto feeders. Animal products, except for truffle, are collectible year-round and the animals bear offspring until the barn is full.

Complete Quests & Build Relationships

Winter in Stardew Valley is the best time for keeping an eye on the notice boards outside Pierre’s General Store and Mayor Lewis’ house. Not only can you increase your friendship points with certain villagers by completing delivery quests, you can also spend time randomly giving them a ‘loved gift’  — there are also 9 birthdays to watch out for during this season — in order to up your heart points with them.

Grow High Profit Crops In The Greenhouse & Ginger Island

Greenhouse During your first winter in Stardew Valley, you are unlikely to have completed the Community Center challenge unless you’ve ticked the Guarantee Year 1 Completable from Advanced Options (or got the red cabbage seeds as drops) and done enough grinding to finish all the bundles.

But by year 2, the Greenhouse in your yard will have been repaired. It is the final reward for finishing the Community Center — the only other way to get it fixed would be to pay Joja Mart a lot of gold. All through the year, you can utilize the greenhouse to grow off-season crops.

Starfruit, sweet gem berries or ancient fruit are the most profitable ones, as you can see in our ‘Stardew Valley Best Crops For Each Season‘ guide. Once you have access to Ginger Island, you can use this additional beach farm plot to grow absolutely anything, except for a giant crop, year-round.

Challenge Yourself To Go Deeper In The Mines

Qi Snake Milk Remember all those times the Fortune Teller on TV predicted good fortune and you were forced to miss those lucky days because of the farming tasks you had to complete? Hurray for winter.

It’s that one season you can challenge yourself to go deeper in the any of the mines that are accessible to you by leaving your house at 6am and giving yourself the entire day to grind. The Skull Cavern is especially fun to explore when you have plenty of time on your hands.

Fish, Fish, And Fish Some More

Fishing is one of the best winter activities in Stardew Valley in terms of profits. It’s a way to earn money quickly so you can upgrade stuff and collect gold to buy seeds for spring. The most profitable spot to fish is the mountain lake (the water body near the Adventurer’s Guild or mine entrance). A variety of freshwater fish such as sturgeon, midnight carp, lingcod and perch can be caught here.

If you don’t want to muck about at the mountain lake, you can go for common ocean fish or attempt to reel in valuable river fish like tiger trout. The Glacierfish, which is a legendary fish, is only available in winter at the south end of Arrowhead Island in Cindersap Forest. You can also try your luck in the sewers for the all-season ancient bottom feeder called the Mutant Carp fish, now that you have the time.

Check Out The Night Market

Night Market SDV The Night Market runs from Winter 15 – 17 between 5pm and 2am. There are many activities you can try out such as the Mermaid Show which can net you a Pearl (sell price of 2500g), plumbing the ocean’s twilight depths for Midnight Squid, Spook fish or Blobfish during the submarine ride, buying special items from the traders and so on.

Attend Feast Of the Winter Star & Festival Of Ice

Every season has at least a couple of events in which you can participate for fun. If you win the ice fishing challenge at the Festival of Ice, you can earn 2000g. It takes place on the 8th of Winter. Then there’s the Night Market, as mentioned above.

Even if you miss these two winter events, there’s still the Winter Feast in Stardew Valley. It happens on the 25th between 9am and 2pm. Mayor Lewis will send you a mail telling you who you’ll be playing secret Santa to on the 18th. The item you give the gift recipient at the Feast of the Winter Star will be worth 5x the normal amount of friendship points.

Grow Winter Crops

Winter Crops In case you haven’t managed to repair the Greenhouse by your first Stardew Valley winter, get your hoe and start digging for snow yams and winter roots all around Pelican Town and its surrounding areas. Don’t forget that you can also find crystal fruit and crocus along the way by regular foraging.

You will have the crafting recipe for Wild Seeds (Wi) by winter. Throw together a snow yam, winter root, crystal fruit and crocus to make 10 Winter Seeds. Alternately, put a winter root in the seed maker to get up to 3 of these mixed seeds.

You can plant them and see what will come up. Junimos do not harvest crops during winter. Additionally, you do need to water crops during this season, even on snowy days. So unless you have sprinklers set up, it’s not worth the effort in terms of returns. Also, fruit trees don’t bear produce in winter.

Wrapping Up

So there you go — we’ve just listed a ton of activities for those of you trying to figure out what to do during winter in Stardew Valley. It is without question the best season for indulging in all the activities you can’t normally do due to farming taking over most of your day during the previous seasons.

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