Tag Archives: Photography

Mother’s Day Bears

On the weekend, M and I drove through Wood Buffalo National Park on our way to Fort Smith. We saw quite a few bison (frequently mislabelled as buffalo; the park has also retained the old inaccurate name) but lots of bears as well.

They have been out and around for about two to three weeks now and are fully awake.

I was surprised at how tame they are. This bear stayed in the road, unphased, as we carefully maneuvered around him. He looked hopefully at us as we passed.

There were others as well. This one stood up, also unbothered, as we slowed down to take his picture. There was no attempt to flee.

Another beautiful bear was curious enough to start walking towards us. We took the picture and pulled away.

I was dismayed to learn later that the reason why the bears seem so comfortable with people is that they are often being fed. And in a national park no less! Heartbreaking. As the saying goes, “a fed bear is a dead bear.” This park is huge (bigger than Switzerland) and there is limited access by vehicle, so park rangers will try to move bears that become too friendly into the back country. Unfortunately, some of them return and are then euthanized. All because human beings can’t stop being idiots.

 

A Drive through the Rockies

We recently left British Columbia to return to the Northwest Territories. We took a more northern route through the Rockies and past Jasper National Park.

Before entering Jasper, we came up to Mount Robson. It’s the highest mountain in the Canadian Rockies.

Although there was still some snow on the ground the temperature was two or three degrees C above zero.

We were in high mountain country, but Mount Robson was still quite a frozen surprise sitting in the early spring sun.

The driving conditions were great and although our drive was long, it was incredibly scenic. To the east of Mount Robson, we entered Jasper National Park.

After this range of mountains, we started the drive’s next leg through the northern prairies.

Have you had any interesting road trips lately?

An Okanagan Hike

We recently enjoyed some hiking in the Okanagan.

The weather was glorious (especially after our chilly northern snowscape) and we enjoyed it immensely.

There was a little snow at the higher elevations, but mostly there was just some lovely melting.

There will soon be lots of grapes and a new wine season …

… time to enjoy some some summer sippers. ๐Ÿ™‚

And an update: we have now returned to the Northwest Territories and have brought some favourite bottles with us. Wonderful to have the warmth of that valley with us as we continue to face up and down temperatures and more snow.

How is your spring coming along?

Yup – It’s Spring

I’ve been taking a break from the northern -20ยฐ climes …

Site of the juvenile snowboarding venue – 2018 Arctic Winter Games, Fort Smith, NWT

… and experiencing much warmer weather in the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia. 17ยฐC to be exact.

This is the NK’Mip First Nation winery and resort just outside of Osoyoos. M and I didn’t stay there (or swim in the pool), but we did stop for a really fantastic lunch. Osoyoos is about 45 minutes’ drive – through stunning wine country – from our home.

The grape vines are still dozing, but they will soon be fully awake.

After buying some favourite wines, we moseyed back. This photo is of a reflection over Osoyoos Lake.

Here it is again, right side up.

Having a break from the continuing cold weather in the north has been wonderful. *Sigh*ย  ๐Ÿ™‚

March Is Here … Spring Is too?

It’s March! And unlike some other places in North America, the weather has been very stable here. According to the old saying, March came in like a lamb, but it has remained very lamb-like with bright sun that just has that budding spring quality to it. I hope it doesn’t go out like a lion. ๐Ÿ™‚

It’s gradually been getting warmer – we’ve had two days together of +2ยฐC – with some minor melting occurring. Standing in the sun has been very pleasant and after all the cold, it feels really wonderful.

Shadow me dressed in full gear. I look like I’m wearing a sawed-off smurf hat.

Still, we’re choked with snow, even though the warming temperatures have caused it to compress and pack.

I wouldn’t want to play volleyball just yet. ๐Ÿ™‚

This is a photo of the beach at our part of Great Slave Lake. You really can’t tell where the beach ends and the lake starts, although you can get an idea from the placement of the lifeguard’s chair.

Soon, however, the fact that our days are lengthening quickly – with the time change it now gets dark at about 8:00 – will bring about a sudden tipping point, and all that snow will melt rapidly.

My snowy back yard, taken about three weeks ago. It was colder, and I think the light quality reflects that.

The southern parts seem to be experiencing extreme ups and downs in temperature and precipitation, but here we are seeing a gradual climb into a lovely spring.

Has your spring started? Is it a lamb or a lion? Or are you heading into autumn now?

A Winter Reprieveย 

On a recent -40C morning, I was impressed by the blanketed quiet and ice fog-dominated atmosphere. The only sound was the crackling of my clothing and bag as they became deep-freeze cold. It was dark as I walked to work, but later as the sun began to rise, it looked like this:

An ice foggy morning.

Visibility wasn’t great until the day started lightening and it became a little warmer. It was one of those mornings that produced some rather heavily frost-encrusted eyelashes. When I came inside, I briefly held them with my fingers to melt the ice.

The ice fog disappears.

Hiding under all that fog was an intensely blue sky and the whitest white snow, almost blue itself. It turned into a very beautiful day with almost blindingly bright sun, even though it was incredibly cold outside.

It may be cold, but these vistas melt me. ๐Ÿ™‚

What can melt you?