February Freeze

1 thermometreThis has been the morning temperature for the last nine days.

But we have had SUN SUN SUN!  It sails right over Middle Mountain now; when it cleared that I immediately had 20 more minutes of sunshine.

IMG_5988The clear, evening light is beautiful.

2b evening lightA couple of times we had a tiny few clouds that made pretty sunsets.

2c sunset

 

 

2d sunset

 

 

2e sunsetBut mostly the sky has been clear and the stars have been amazing.  Right now we have a brilliant “Morning Star” – I assume it is Venus.

2f morning starAfternoon temperatures have been around -16C, but it has been windless and with the sun they are very comfortable.  On the second cold day (1st feb) the annual Tatla Lake ski competition was held.

3 Tatla skiMy new knee won’t allow me to ski but I go for the food and social life.  A fun event was throwing the chain saw. Kids went first

4 throwing chainsawAnd then the adults.  I am sure that many of the adults had quite a lot of practice at this!

5 tossing sawI’ve been struggling away with my manuscript so have spent a lot of time inside.  Finally, today I finished the fifth read-through: I’ve got most of it properly organized now and will go through it one more time to tidy up details before I send it off.

So when a friend arrived last Saturday it was good to be forced out of the house for a hike.  We thought we’d try to reach the Kleena Kleene Falls.  I went there last August and a lot of water was roaring down then.  I anticipated interesting ice formations, but the water level was too low to be spectacular.  Last summer, we drove half way but the road is very bad with very few places to turn round and I didn’t want to risk taking the truck.  It was a 12-km round trip in enough snow to make walking a quite tiring, but too little to bother with snowshoes.  The falls is near the bottom of Finger Peak.

6 to KK fallsI enjoyed the abstract patterns in the shadows across the road.

7 stripey shadowsIn summer we found a lot of the saprophytic pine drops.  The seedheads last for years.

 

8 pinedropsSoon we came to a Lookout.

9 lookoutMy friend Renata took this picture.  Here she is down by the falls.

10 near falls, RenataShe is a relief lighthouse keeper and travels all over the coast.

There were a few pieces of open water .

11 open waterThese were fringed by fantastic icicles.

12 icicles

 

 

13 iciclesAnd living in this fairy world was a dipper.

14 dipperThese extraordinary birds live wherever there is fast, flowing water.  They eat insect larvae, particularly blackfly larvae, which cling to rocks in fast-moving streams.  They are about the size of robins – and distantly related – and have dense, warterproof feathers.  To enable them to walk on the bottom of the rivers they have very long toes.  They obviously have a great anti-freeze system for those skinny legs.

They are very territorial – I have found them at Lonesome Lake, Nuk Tessli, and Ginty Creek.  If there is more than one bird in an area in winter, they stake their claim by singing.  They have the most amazing  song – a huge variety of gorgeous notes with, if you listen carefully, various clicks and grunts in between.  A truly amazing bird.

Although this is a different subject, so many of you have asked about Ruby I am including a few pictures.

16 RubyShe “kneads” the blankets and gets her claws stuck, that is why they are a mess.  Her favourite sleeping place is on top of a high beam.  She kept falling off and landing on her water bowl so I added an extra shelf.  She still falls off sometimes.  She has many other places to sleep – I don’t know why she likes that best.

15 Ruby on shelfThis is how she asks for a pat.

17 wanting a pat.

 

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3 thoughts on “February Freeze”

  1. I would love to be added to your notification list. I found your blog, and your books two years ago. My wife and I bought the Harris cabin on Charlotte lk 2 years ago. I have since spent a great deal of time prowling the area getting to know it. Your blog and book have helped greatly.

    Thank you,

    Mike

  2. Looks like winter has arrived in spades for you. Love the pictures. I admire how far you walk even with a knee not completely healed! Also like the dog picture and sweet Ruby reaching for a pat. The bird is amazing too. Nothing compares to the beauty of nature.

  3. I very much enjoy reading your posts and seeing your photos. I was wondering when you were going to get a cold spell as it has been quite nippy where I am.
    The adult chainsaw photo looks like an old postcard: beautifully muted colours.
    And the shots by the falls have me longing to get away
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