Category Archives: Photography

Wet Monday

It was a wet holiday Monday: non stop light rain. Very quiet, too, because most of the weekend visitors had already left, or were parked in the ferry line-up, returning to their working lives.

I decided to go for a walk down to the Narvaez Bay part of the Gulf Islands National Park, on Saturna Island. The first time in 5 months, but I am recuperating well, the hobbling along is improving and a 2.6+ km walk (down and up, I might add) is a good thing to do when you have overindulged during the weekend…

First, though, I had to get through the turkey traffic near the general store…

Turkey traffic near the general store, Saturna Island, BC. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Then drive a few kilometers on Narvaez Bay Road, a former horse cart road that doesn’t go from A to B in a straight line…

Narvaez Bay Road, on the way to the park, on Saturna Island, BC. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Once past the park gate, the magic starts to happen.


Big Leaf Maple (Acer macrophyllum) in the fall, framed by tall and very dark firs. Narvaez Bay, Saturna Island. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Above, this Big leaf maple (Acer macrophyllum) is showing its fall colour, a bright punctuation in the very dark fir and cedar forest that lines the way down to the bay.

For those who walk slowly, there are all sorts of little treasures to discover… You just have to pay attention.


Oregon Grape (Mahonia aquifolium), fall colour. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Along the old road down to the bay, I stopped and practiced focusing on wet surfaces. Above: Oregon grape (Mahonia aquifolium), in full fall regalia.


Almost an ecosystem of lichens, on a branch. Narvaez Bay, Saturna Island, BC. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Here is a little ecosystem of lichens, arranged on a branch near the path. It reminds me of corals, in tropical oceans.


Water drop, cedar diamond. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Then my game consisted of trying to focus on water drops, at the tip of cedar boughs. Without getting the camera too wet…


Nootka Rose Hips. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Above, a Nootka Rose (Rosa nutkana) flashes its hips. I am still working on finding the right depth of focus, to successfully include all the bits I want to focus on, and “fuzzy up” the background. In this case, an F/4.0 aperture is obviously not going to do it… Working on it, though.


Bottom of Narvaez Bay Road, Saturna Island. Gulf Islands National Park. Photo by Andrée Fredette

And after wandering around, it was time to go home for supper, back up the road/path to the parking area.  Another couple of hours well spent. Breathing fresh air: highly recommended.

Mount Baker Moods – Photo Wednesday

Mount Baker is an impressive mountain, a volcano, actually. It dominates the sky, from the Anacortes shoreline.


Baker Early Morning

Above, an early morning peachy-colored skyline, featuring the volcano in the background. Taken at the ferry parking lot, in Anacortes, WA.


Mount Baker, WA. Morning mood. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Then, blue shading started to come in… This was about thirty minutes later, and the pastels were softly changing.


Mount Baker, from the Anacortes Ferry. Photo by Andrée Fredette


And this was taken from the ferry, about an hour later. I think it was just before Friday Harbor, our midway stop before crossing the international boundary, heading for Sidney, on Vancouver Island.


And below… this is what Mount Baker, the White Sentinel, looks like, from Saturna Island, in BC.

Mount Baker, from Saturna Island, BC. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Red Moon

Last evening, I took a tripod and a new camera to East Point, on Saturna, to see if I could get the hang of night photography.

I still have lots to learn about exposure, timing, focusing, and operating my new camera in the dark… (Hello, what was I thinking?)

Red Moon at 7:51 pm on Saturna, September 27. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Above, the early part of the show, once the moon rose above the haze/fog of Bellingham, on the West Coast. It was 7:51 p.m. local time.


Red Moon at 8:04 pm local time, Saturna Island, BC. Photo by Andrée Fredette

After about 15 minutes, the moon’s orange and gold brilliance became more intense.  I apologize for the fuzziness of this photo, taken at 8:04 p.m.  I will need to check out and set up the remote shutter app, so I don’t have to touch the camera (and make it vibrate) to activate the shutter – especially at night.


Red Moon at 8:15 pm, local time, Saturna Island, BC. Photo by Andrée Fredette

And 10 minutes later, at 8:15 pm, the moon was already losing its orange tinge.

And at the same time, a Holland America cruise ship – the Oosterdam – leaving Vancouver on its way to San Diego,  was coming through. It was following Boundary Pass, the international line that separates the Canadian and American islands…

Red Moon over the Oosterdam cruise ship in Boundary Passs. Photo by Andrée Fredette

As you can see, I had issues with speed settings. The moon was fairly stationary, but not the cruise ship! Here is the Oosterdam, in all its glory, full speed ahead, and all its lights blazing. And more than a bit fuzzy…


Oosterdam Cruise Ship and its light show, passing by Saturna Island, BC. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Viewed from a distance, a cruise ship produces an impressive “light waterfall” on the water.


Night Lights on Orcas Island, viewed from Saturna Island, BC. Photo by Andrée Fredette

And across the pass, the towers of Orcas Island leave a red trail in the waters of Boundary Pass.

Fall Equinox – Photo Wednesday

First day of fall. Getting used to the idea that summer is over.

Although I have to stay on flat terrain and paths, I am happy to report that I am walking again, without the giant plastic boot, cane or crutches. What a relief!


Most on trunk, after the first rains in months. Photo by Andrée Fredette

On this first day of fall, the weather has certainly changed, and so has the forest. The first rains have greened the forest floor. Moss really responds to moisture very quickly. It doesn’t look as discouraged as before…


Blackberry Leaf, Stressed. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Above,  the leaves are showing stress. The drought was hard on vegetation, even in the shady areas.


Chainsaw Tic Tac Toe. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Above, a tree stump in which a creative logger for Parks Canada left a tic-tac-toe of chainsaw cuts…


Leaf veins form a lace-like network. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Above, the lace-like veins of a leaf, offering a hint, a reminder of what once was and is on the way out. Still, elegant…


Bracken Fern Detail. Beautiful Texture. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Above, bracken fern (Pteridium), an elegant plant with very interesting texture, up close and personal.

And speaking of up close and personal, my latest discovery:


Yellow-Ladle Liverwort (Scapania bolanderi), Saturna Island. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Yellow-Ladle liverwort (Scapania bolanderi)… Tiny, tiny liverwort. I did not really know what was on the photo before I looked at full resolution, on my computer screen… The “sticks” on that photo are fir needles, to give you an idea of the scale. I will return with a tripod to take a sharper set of pictures of this little treasure. And maybe correct the ID of this one.  And speaking of identifying the things I discover on my walks, I have a reference shelf…

Here is a well-used book in our house:

Plants of Coastal British Columbia, by Pojar & MacKinnon.

Can’t recommend this book enough! Everything from trees to lichens, for this region. Very useful and informative.

Go have a walk outside!