Tag Archives: Photography

Mountain treasures

Above: the skyline, viewed from the Heather Trail, E.C. Manning Provincial Park, BC.

Summer, the perfect time for a road trip. A few weeks ago, I headed to the alpine meadows of the Cascades.

Meadow flowers, BC. Photo by Andrée FredetteThere were colourful treasures on that mountain path…

(Pssst: click on these photos, to view them full size.)

Indian paintbrush (Castilleja). Photo by Andrée FredetteMeet the Indian paintbrush (Castilleja), up close. All these plants are really tough guys. They have to reproduce during a very short season (I was told that snow melted in late May to mid-June, at that altitude). The soil is poor, and the elements are cruel.  And this particular plant, Indian paintbrush, is a hemiparasite, meaning that it gets some of its nutrients by living off its neighbours… Tsk, tsk.

Beginning of Heather Trail. Photo by Andrée FredetteUp on the mountain, the trail beckons.

Close-up of Lousewort (Pedicularis bracteosa). Photo by Andrée FredetteSome of the flowering plants are very ancient-looking. Meet Lousewort (Pedicularis bracteosa), with pollinators on board.

White paintbrush (Castilleja occidentalis). Photo by Andrée FredetteI spotted a white and maroon variety of Indian paintbrush (Castilleja).

Seedhead of Western Pasque flower (Anemone occidentalis). Photo by Andrée FredetteI was a few weeks too late to admire blooming Western Pasque flowers (Anemone occidentalis)… So instead, here is a close-up of a seedhead, with insect ornaments.

Tiger lily (Lilium columbianum). Photo by Andrée FredetteFor that golden touch, there were specimens ofTiger lily (Lilium columbianum).

Lupine on the mountain. Photo by Andrée FredetteThe lovely blue of Lupine (but which? maybe Large-leaved, maybe not…)

Columbine portrait (Aquilegia canadensis). Photo by Andrée FredetteAn intimate portrait of the Columbine (Aquilegia canadensis).

Spirea in bloom by the Beaver Meadow. Photo by Andrée FredetteIn a moist area near the main road, Spirea in bloom, by the Beaver pond.

And here is a landscape, featuring the Beaver pond.

Beaver Meadow, E.C. Manning Park. Photo by Andrée Fredette

And I leave you with the irony of a hiking quatuor, catching up with the news near the cell tower. Top of the mountain, at 2200 meters, where they had many bars on their cells.

Eager for updates. Photo by Andrée Fredette

 

These waters – Photo Wednesday

Above: classic shot of the Fog Alarm Building at East Point, Saturna Island, British Columbia.

And below, I tried to catch the sky reflected in a puddle left in sandstone hollows, on the “other side” of East Point.

The other side of East Point, Saturna Island, British Columbia. Photo by Andrée Fredette

If you like blues, this is the place. In these waters, an entire palette of blues is deployed every day.

Islet with approaching fog. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Above: an islet before the approaching fog engulfs it… Viewed from the ferry.

HMCS Oriole, oldest commissioned vessel in the Royal Canadian Navy. Photo by Andrée Fredette

And the same morning, again from the ferry, an apparition: the HMCS Oriole, the oldest commissioned vessel in the Royal Canadian Navy. It is a  31 m (101 ft 8 in) sailing ketch built in 1921. (I had to look it up.)

 Evening sail, by Salt Spring Island, British Columbia. Photo by Andrée Fredette

And I leave you with these sailors, stretching the day into evening.

Navy Channel Sunset. Photo by Andrée FredetteSummer is here. How about a tequila sunset?

Into the woods – Photo Wednesday

Above: true Pacific Northwest rainforest… abundant mosses draping every limb.

This post is a bit of reminiscing about past outdoor trips. And dreaming of new trips in the future.

Secret waterfall, from a forest service road. Vancouver Island, BC. Photo by Andrée Fredette

The photo above was taken from a forest service road on Vancouver Island, BC. I have no idea where I was (I leave the details to the trip leader) exactly, but I remember it with great fondness.

Big trees. Vancouver Island, BC. Photo by Andrée Fredettte

I wanted to show how dwarfed we are by the forest giants. We humans are such small creatures…

 

Big trees, hard route. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Getting to the big trees is not for the faint of heart. Hard route, uphill mostly.

 

July forest floor contrats. Photo by Andrée Fredette

The forest floor also offers interesting contrasts.

 

How tall are the firs? Very tall. Photo by Andrée Fredette

How tall are the Douglas firs (Pseudotsuga menziesii), you ask? Very tall. Look up, go ahead.

And in late spring, those fir trees are procreating. Have a look at Douglas fir female cones, in the spring…

Douglas Fir female cones. Photo by Andrée Fredette

While we are on reproduction, here is the Salal (Gaultheria shalllon) version, beautiful dainty blossoms…

Salal blossoms. Photo by Andrée Fredette

“How I go to the woods

Ordinarily, I go to the woods alone, with not a single
friend, for they are all smilers and talkers and therefore
unsuitable.

I don’t really want to be witnessed talking to the catbirds
or hugging the old black oak tree. I have my way of
praying, as you no doubt have yours.

Besides, when I am alone I can become invisible. I can sit
on the top of a dune as motionless as an uprise of weeds,
until the foxes run by unconcerned. I can hear the almost
unhearable sound of the roses singing.

If you have ever gone to the woods with me, I must love
you very much.”  ― Mary Oliver, Swan: Poems and Prose Poems

****

Me again, I will finish with a photo of an orchid that is sweetly growing in my garden… and nobody has witnessed me talking to it…

Orchid in June, Saturna Island. Photo by Andrée Fredette

Natural Wonder – Photo Wednesday

Above: a skyscape captured last night, around 9:30 pm. Cue the Mozart sonatas…

I have been outside and away from my blog for a bit. Here is some evidence of where I’ve been wandering…

Achillea blossom, about to open. Photo by Andrée FredetteAbove, an about to open yarrom blossom (Achillea millefolium), like a treasure in the dry grass.

 

Bottlebrush, blooming in the garden in June. Photo by Andrée FredetteThis is an Australian bottlebrush (Grevillea), a shrub that survives in my garden in the Southern Gulf Islands of BC. Loved by hummingbirds.

Salvia Blue Angel, in the June garden. Photo by Andrée FredetteAnd this thrilling version of blue is brought to you by a special sage, Salvia Blue Angel.

 

Hummingbird in flight. Photo by Andrée FredetteSpeaking of hummingbirds, here is a little male, showing off his colours.

 

Promise, almost open... Photo by Andrée FredeteThe spring garden is full of promise. Almost open…

 

Dry grass, almost abstract. Photo by Andrée FredetteAnd in the fields around here, the grass is very dry, and panicles are poetically dancing in the wind…

 

After the moult, discarded snake skin. Photo by Andrée FredetteAnd in the dry grass, look at what we found: a skin, shed by a snake done with moulting for another little while. Such a delicate thing. Moving on, shedding your skin, there’s a thought.

May sunset wonder. Photo by Andrée FredetteAnd I leave you with a golden liquid sunset from a couple of weeks ago. Again, Mozart time.