Just another WordPress.com site

Welcome to My Heartsong!

My Heartsong came out of a desire to be true to myself and sing the song of my heart,to take the time to do the things that I love to do because I came to believe that to follow this call is to do the will of the Creator and it gives me great pleasure.(when one receives a gift,one must open it). An activity that feeds my soul is photography. I share with you my photos and a little bit about them. Enjoy!
  • pictures 056-2
  • pictures 475
  • pictures 431-2
  • pictures 192-2
  • pictures 050-2
  • pictures 043
  • Snow Geese
  • pictures 311-2
  • pictures 046-3
  • pictures 132-3

Latest

Welcome to the New Premier of Alberta

I wanted to be there for this historical moment and obviously so did a few other people. The public was invited this afternoon to the swearing-in of the new Premier of Alberta, Rachel Notley the leader of the New Democrat party. She also announced her new ministers. Amazingly, the ND party won a majority government after 42 years of governing by the Progressive Conservatives.I never dreamed that I would see this in my lifetime.It was exciting to be there, to hear the new ministers being announced and to hear the cheering from the crowd. Some are predicting doom and gloom and admittedly we have a couple of immature people in caucus but that isn’t the first time that has happened.Let us wait and see, especially in Education, Energy, Health and the Environment.

Some of the crowd of people that showed up to the event.

pictures 054-2

pictures 040-2

The Honorable Rachel Notley, Premier of Alberta

pictures 029-2

After the speeches, the applause, the fountain and the music started up

pictures 056-2

Kootenay Plains

i explored further than Windy Point and stopped at Preachers Point and though I took a photo with my zoom lens, i recognized the mountains that I had shot in the winter a couple of years ago. Ironicly , my friends were  coming back from Vancouver and were in this same area the same day. We may have even passed each other!

pictures 475 pictures 467 pictures 471

Here are the photos from the winter when i was here at sunrise, obviously with a wider -angle lens.

IMG_1508-2-2

IMG_1571-2

I dropped into Two-O’Clock Creek, so named because the creekbed will flood with water from the run-off from the mountains in the afternoon. I noticed there are notices on the signs to submit ticks because Alberta health want to test them for evidence of Lyme disease. This is new to me so had me worried about more than bears. Thiss campground is a beautiful spot with an energy that draws me back ever since I first discovered it. i was thrilled to find a Western Tanager here although I apologise for the lousy shot.

pictures 484

i did some walking and stopped to say hello to the campground managers. See why i like this place so much?

pictures 501-2 pictures 503-2 pictures 500-2

pictures 507-2

pictures 511-2 pictures 510-2

The weather changed again and it FELT like snow was coming. up to then I was in a t-shirt and light jacket. The clouds rolled in and the mountains were almost covered completely. Time to go home.

pictures 526-2 pictures 527-2 pictures 519 pictures 520-2

Day 3 Views from Windy Point

Two days in a row it was still and quiet at Windy point, except on the return the weather had changed to very windy and the clouds had socked in, with snow again. Three seasons in two days.But it was a mix of sun and cloud in the early part of the day and I used the polariser. I thought that it might be blah because I heard the water was at its low point, but the land had such a sculptural quality that intrigued me and the lake was a pretty turquoise. It was a whole new landscape from what I had experienced in the summer and fall in previous visits.

pictures 431-2

The sheep were here again and I took more photos of them but with a wide angle lens rather than the zoom.I love the trees here, they show the wear and tear from the almost constant winds as you can see on the point.

pictures 427-2

pictures 426-2

On the return trip I witnessed a herd of sheep pop up their heads as I drove off the highway to the Mount  Michener viewpoint. One little fellow popped over the guard rail and stared at me. Then he started running after the car and i backed up really fast. he hopped over the guard rail and looked over the hill , probably looking for his mates.

pictures 529

pictures 532

pictures 535-2

I took one last shot of the lake  to show how much the  weather had changed.It got cold and turned rainy and snowy, so I headed back to home base to a nice warm cabin..

pictures 537-2

Day 2 Abraham Lake-Windy Point

Luckily it cleared up after a nap so I headed to Abraham Lake. The first photo isn’t of the lake  but I was getting close and the  light was such that I couldn’t resist a stop.

pictures 192-2

It was cloudy and made for great mood. I went to Windy Point which miraculously wasn’t windy at all. Often I have to brace myself against a rock and hang on to my equipment for dear life in fear of being blown away.All the ensuing photos were taken from this one area. The lake was a light turquoise which is a feature of this body of water (in the summer it becomes a bright turquoise) and the low levels at this time of year lent to some interesting shapes and textures of the exposed gravel and sand.Interesting knarled trees spot the landscape, there are a variety of subjects.

pictures 208-2 pictures 211-2 pictures 212-2 pictures 219-3 pictures 221-2 pictures 227-2 pictures 228-2 pictures 232-2

After driving above the  the parking lot I realized that I wasn’t alone as I had thought. There were a few Rocky Mountain sheep below me. They all stopped and checked me out then resumed grazing but had probably been watching me some time before I realized their presence. Nothing like being aware of my surroundings, especially in bear country.

pictures 215-2

pictures 241-2 pictures 246-2

There were small groups of White -crowned sparrows.pictures 260-2 pictures 261-3 pictures 267-2 pictures 193-2 pictures 199-2 pictures 201-2 pictures 204-2 pictures 206-2 pictures 207-2

I did not regret making this trip in the late afternoon, probably only drove 40km to get here. the first time here I missed the entrance because it is just before the highway goes through cutrock. Keep your eyes open for oncoming traffic.After ascending above the  parking lot I realized that I wasn’t alone as I had thought. There were a few Rocky Mountain sheep below staring up at me. They all stopped and checked me out then resumed grazing but had probably been watching me some time before I realized their presence. Nothing like being aware of my surroundings, especially in bear country. I love this country where the time goes by quickly because there is so much to see and it never gets boring. My preference was to stay close to the cabins  and spend time walking rather than be in the car most of the time. I returned to home base later in the day, with quick stops at Fish Lake and Goldeye Lake to see the changes, and the deer, which were plentiful and vowed to use the electric heat rather than the wood stove mostly because of my asthma.

Day 2 in the Mountains

It started to snow last night and we had a thin coating of the white stuff this morning. It felt  surreal but so was the news that the NDP won a majority in the provincial election. This province has stubbornly been Progressive Conservative for over 40 years. Wow! That message was loud and clear!

Here’s the cabin I stayed in. It had a satellite TV, microwave oven, BBQ on the porch, DVD’s, flannel sheets and a cozy bed.  I indulged in popcorn, TV and reading, and lighting the fire in the wood stove, important things when you are getting away from it all. When the fire died down it got smokey. The popcorn that I popped in the microwave tasted great but it stunk. The steak I cooked was smoking too.The fire alarm went off. i worried that I would be charged extra if I made the place smelly so I turned up the electric heater and opened the windows and turned on the fans until the air cleared.

The Raven

pictures 067-2

pictures 050-2 pictures 048

 pictures 066-2 pictures 061-2

I am a city gal. I am so glad that I brought my winter coats, hat and gloves and that I have procrastinated in replacing my snow tires with all-season ones.I forgot how swiftly the weather can change in the mountains. I decided I wanted to drive up the road to Mount Baldy to get a higher view of the world. It was snowing slightly  but as I got higher the snow got heavier and the road was very slippery. I slowed down and frankly thanked God for keeping me safe as I kept going upward , looking for a space wide enough to turn around. It was pretty but no thanks, I wanted to get back down.

pictures 109-2 pictures 104-2 pictures 105-2

I got down the road safely then thought it would be interesting to see Fish Lake again, under different circumstances.

pictures 157-2 pictures 112 pictures 133-2

pictures 148-2 pictures 115-2 pictures 119-2 pictures 138-2

After exploring here, I returned to the cabin for lunch and to see if it would clear up.It did, and I drove out to Abraham Lake, to be continued in the next post.

One Day at a Time in the Mountains – Day One

Although I started my little vacation on Monday of last week, visiting with friends in Lacombe, I did no shooting there, it was visiting only, which I really enjoyed. On Tuesday morning I set out west after picking up groceries and filling up my gas tank. I got to Nordegg in the early afternoon and stopped at the museum which was closed and being renovated for the tourist season which starts later this month. The May long weekend sees thousands head to campground and the back country so there was no homemade pie or bowl of soup at the Miner’s Cafe, but I will get back there later. I didn’t mind being ahead of the crowds.

I was too early for check-in time at Cheechacko Cabins where I was staying two nights so went a few miles down the road to Fish Lake. Previously called Shunda Lake this lake that has five loops of camping stalls, resident loons and an Osprey. As well as the visual treat it provides, I also like listening. I heard the loons calling, the coyotes yipping and the wolves howling. The song birds! There were so many songs, I thought I had died and gone to heaven.I was a big chicken which is a hindrance to hiking. I wasn’t sure of bear activity and although I would have loved to see one from the car, I didn’t want to run into one on the trail. I made noise as I walked  then stopped many times to be still and listen. So quiet and so relaxing.

The lake waters were calm and good reflections were to be had.

pictures 001-2

pictures 005-2

pictures 003-2

The feel of the springy ground beneath my feet was so comforting.

pictures 010-2

i looked at the larger views as  well as the smaller things. Getting Cloudy and a breeze is picking up.

pictures 004-2

Evergreen

pictures 019-2

Bark and  Moss

pictures 013-2

Old Man’s Beard

pictures 006-2

The birds were plentiful but elusive, always flying ahead of me. I spotted a large bird slowly winging through the tops of the trees- the Osprey? I managed to capture a couple of images.

.Savannah Sparrow

pictures 009-2

Spotted Sandpiper

pictures 016-2-2

Yellow Rumped Warblers

pictures 014-2-2

After a few hours at the lake I back-tracked a few miles to Grouse Mountain Road just off of Shunda Creek Road north ofthe town of Nordegg and settled into my cabin, a spotless home with all the comforts. At the end of the first day, I took a quick shot of my surroundings., the trees in the yard and the sculptures on the trees, the Wood Spirits. It was just starting to snow.

pictures 043 pictures 042

Almost a Wild Goose Chase

Went on the Snow Goose Chase yesterday. The migration was early this year and we were late, as the chase often is held in April. however we saw lots of species, 57 to be exact.

The group was enthusiastic and we were rewarded with a smaller remaining flock of snowgeese.We all roared with delight when someone yelled to the driver, “Stop! Stop! There they are!” We were treated to snacks and a warm buffet in Tofield plus there were  scopes, field guides and extra binoculars to share. A few companies sponsor this event but it is organized by the Edmonton Nature Club and we had spotters driving ahead of us and guides on the bus pointing out the various birds. it was a lot of fun. No lifers for me , but it was a thrill to see Black Backed Stilts and a Marbled Godwit through the provided scopes, unfortunately too far for my camera.

Here are some photos of some of the species-most are a distance away, to be expected on a bus tour. Kudos to the Edmonton Nature Club and its dedicated volunteers of expert birders. They will be having some walks in the upcoming season and I hope to join them.

Bonaparte’s Gulls

pictures 003-2

Song Sparrow

pictures 007-2

American White Pelicans

pictures 014-2

pictures 009-2

Red-Wing Blackbirdpictures 025-2

Yellow-Headed Blackbird

pictures 032-2

Mountain Bluebird -Male

pictures 033-2

pictures 034-2

Mountain Bluebird – Female

 pictures 035-2 pictures 036-2

A Gaggle of Snow Geese

pictures 068 pictures 070-2

Greater White- Fronted Goose

pictures 078-2

American Avocet

pictures 093-2

and a terrific sky that had me running back to the bus to change lens.

    pictures 097-2 pictures 098-2

pictures 105-2

Rest and Relaxation

I gave a month’s notice to my work and am taking a much-needed break for a week. We have been short-staffed and over-worked for a long time while making money for the company and I am tired. On Monday I will be heading for the hills, either Jasper National Park or David Thompson country. When I come back I will hopefully  have a whole bunch of new images. For today, I am resting, going to the advance polls to vote in the provincial election and researching options for accomodation in the days to come.Recharging batteries, figuratively and literally.

On Sunday I will still be in this area of Central Alberta but going on the Snow Goose Chase sponsored by the Nature Club. We will be bussing around the country spotting Snow geese on their migration north-a truly magnificent sight. Maybe we will see Bluebirds and owls, cranes…and huge flocks of Snow Geese.

Here are some images from the past as I think of which direction to go:

Medicine Lake, Jasper National Park

pictures 311-2

Abraham Lake David Thompson Country

Abraham Lake June July 118

Gregascious Gulls

They do like to gather and at breeding time there is lots of gestures and noisy chatter but I do not know the males from the females. This group seem to be challenging each other and once in a while, the larger members of the group will chase one away. They do look great in their breeding plumage.

Ring-billed Gulls

pictures 046-3

Two More New Arrivals

Oh! I am getting so excited! Love to see the birds coming back. These are two more new arrivals this season. I only saw the males and the light was getting low but will get the pairs soon. Shot at the full 300mm.

Lesser Scaup Male

pictures 132-3 pictures 129-2

American Widgeon Male

pictures 126-2 pictures 125-2

jmgoyder

wings and things

A Quiet Corner

A place to meditate, reflect and be encouraged.

Steve Boer Photography

Mostly wildlife and nature with a few random things thrown in

Nature and Wildlife Pics

Photos of Birds, Bugs, and Buds

€merald Wake ©

❤ The art marked by the Pain ❤

Krahnpix

Wild photos and the tales they tell

Rangewriter

What Comes Next?

caleephotography

Smile! The world is a beautiful place (^_^)

Ted Griffith's Blog

Seeing the beatuy of God's creation and His Word

Bella Forza Portraits

Portraits, for women facing serious illness, which celebrate: Strength.Beauty.Grace.

I'm pretty sure I can Fly

If I forget about gravity...

Ian Spagnolo Photography

Photography by Ian Spagnolo, Coffs Harbour & Sawtell

1500 Saturdays....

...before I die and what I'm going to do, photograph, think or talk about on those days.

El Bueno, El Feo y El Malo

Capturing the good, the bad and the ugly of lesser-known Spain and now Southeast Asia

Joshi Daniel Photography | Images Of People

Photoblog featuring Images of People, Lifestyles, Cultures, and Traditions

One Blink One Life

Smiling, Laughing, Looking

an outlet for my photos

Dan Jurak's Alberta Landscape Photo Blog

Musings on photographing the Alberta landscape.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 383 other followers