This is the story behind the wintry Google Doodle.

Winter Solstice Google Doodle
Credit: Google

The Winter Solstice, which marks the start of the winter season, is the inspiration behind Thursday's Google Doodle.

The Winter Solstice doodle features an animated mouse ice skating above a mouse hole with what appears to be collected food for hibernation. The animation ends with the mouse rolling into the hole while covered in snow.

Clicking the Google Doodle takes users to a search page for “Winter Solstice 2017,” which offers new articles, tweets and other search results on the Winter Solstice.

The Google Doodle is available for most countries within the Northern Hemisphere since the Southern Hemisphere is experiencing its summer solstice. Those in the Southern Hemisphere have their own summer solstice Google Doodle.

Google’s statement about the Doodle choice also provides more information on the winter solstice, including the exact time it will take place.

“On this day, the tilt of the earth’s North Pole is at its farthest from the sun, resulting in the shortest day and the longest night of the calendar year,” Google’s release states.