Tuesday is the shortest day of the year, with the arrival of winter

“These are dark times, there is no denying,” intones the ominous voice opening a trailer for the upcoming “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1.”

We can’t be sure, but maybe Rufus Scrimgeour is talking about December in Seattle.

Winter arrives at 3:38 p.m. Tuesday, marking the shortest day of the year, with the Puget Sound area getting just 8 hours, 25 minutes and 15 seconds of daylight.

But take heart, we’ll gain an extra few seconds of daylight each day.

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And if we can hang on until the summer solstice, June 21, 2011, timeanddate.com says Seattle will be due for 15 hours, 59 minutes and 29 seconds of daylight.