There was a forest fire at Exclesior Creek earlier this year and I was very saddened to see in the newspapers that the area around my oft-visited viewing site at Medicine Lake was burned.A desire arose in me to see it first-hand. I admit that as I drove up Maligne Lake Road to Medicine Lake the moment I saw the burned area I felt overwhelmed by the devastation.I was also curious what kind of photos I could take of the burnt area and perhaps what was already starting to grow. There were areas that were thick with trees and probably needed thinning out. Yes there will be rejunenation but I felt the loss as well. I talked with a local artist in the parking lot who shared with me how he has come for many years to the area to paint “en plaine air” and we agreed it was sad as well as would be interesting to see what abstracts could be discovered…he as a painter and I as a photographer.I could still smell the charcoal as I took the following photos. Since it was fall the lake was much lower and I was able to walk on ground that normally would be under water. This lake has an under water drainage system and the level drops dramatically in the fall as the water goes underground and drains into the Maligne river and canyon.The photo in my header is of Medicine Lake .there is an eagle’snest on the left and I worried about the young until I saw a photo of the burnt tree with the healthy eaglet still in the nest.
The last photo is taken from the lake looking back at the parking lot above the stairway.there are some trees that survived as well as saplings in their fall colours
After going into town for a yummy muffin and Latte from The Other Paw, I headed about 20 km south on the Icefields Parkway to a most wonderful lake. There is a small parking area here and no signs except for the board at the trail head. It is just a short walk through the woods, to a creek. Cross the creek and follow the trails -there is one that goes straight ahead and one that goes left along the creek then into the woods. Both ways are short walks that take you to different parts of the rocky shoreline that has, in some spots, emerald green waters and if you time it right , amazing reflections of the water and cliffs across the way.
This is a place where I can spend hours pondering the scenery and on a warm day, soaking up the heat from the rocks.
Just down the road is the junction of highways 93 and 93A. I turned right here to go to Athabasca Falls.There are short walks to various viewpoints of the falls and the gorge. You can feel the energy as the water rushes over the rocks and through the gorge.
I have been to this spot in spring , summer and fall -never the same and always exciting.
Next was Medicine Lake where there was a forest fire earlier this season and further up the road, Maligne Lake, an almost 40 km drive. I will save that for my next post.
Not coping with the heat too well, it was a great choice to visit Elk Island National Park in the evening. We arrived at a hiking tail in the dusk armed with water and Au de Doctor Doom and Deep Woods Off. We could hear the mosquitos around our ears and the coyotes in the hills. On this trail is a boardwalk where we could walk across a swampy area and the light and reflections were amazing. A beaver swam back and forth creating an impressive abstract of reflected ripples. It was a typical June day, with lush greens and golds which were a feast for the eyes. Enjoy.
To be honest, I am more inclined to stay home and read a book than go exploring outdoors. Too cold. It has been minus 25 but getting warmer today and may even go to the plus side this weekend. Here are some photos that I took last week.
There are so many wonderful colours this year due to heavy frosts, warm days and lack of wind so the leaves are brighter and staying longer. I have been playing with alternate ways of viewing and having fun.
The guest blogger for the weekly challenge is Christopher Martin , whom I follow. Check out his blog especially if you are a photographer. The theme this week is to get closer to the details in a scene, which I like to do. Here is a photo of the larger view of Windy Point at Abraham Lake and a smaller detail.
During my travels this summer, I was in the mountains and visited lakes, streams and rivers. There was lots of water and flooding due to large amounts of snow and spring run off. But another aspect of this country was the rocky landscapes that I so enjoy. They could provide warm places to lie out in the sun. They could shelter me from strong winds. There were places that inspired me to take closer shots than the usual mountain vistas.
Winter’s back. I am appreciating indoor plumbing and heat today after a visit to the heritage site yesterday.There is sure to be more awsomome snow drifts after yesterday’s windy storm although I may not appreciate digging my car out -we got about 1o cm last night – oh well, it comes with the territory and the exercise is good. I am grateful for the moisture after a choking amount of dust the last couple of weeks.Really like this shot of snow drift it is exactly the way that I took it, no cropping or adjustments.
The shortest day of the year is here and now the days will get longer-yay! I am somewhat sensitive to lack of daylight. Luckily I have opportunities to get outdoors at my work. Longer days make it easier to cope with the cold temperatures that come in January and February, though I am enjoying the warm weather that we are experiencing now. We have had a light dusting of snowfor which I am grateful-it seems to reflect the lights in a way that is pleasing. Speaking of lights, displays around the city are beautiful-somewhat aleviates the burn-out I am experiencing . To celebrate this season of light I am putting in a motion photo of what else, lights!
May your heart be warm and your soul be bright.