Welcome to my blog wherein I will be sharing some of my outdoor and travel photo experiences and ideas.

Hope you enjoy my musings and ramblings. Comments are welcome.

February 20 - Armstrong

February 20, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

We've had some very cold days lately - too cold for enjoyable skiing.

So today we took the opportunity to do some exploring in the North Okanagan. We drove north along the Otter Lake Road where the valley is quite broad. This largely farming and ranching area is known as Spallumcheen.

I often find dilapidated buildings are interesting to photograph. Why is that? Perhaps it's the mystery about their history and why they have been neglected.

Armstrong1Armstrong1 We have often spotted Trumpeter swans in this part of the valley, wherever they find open water.

Armstrong2Armstrong2 Armstrong is a small town in a picturesque setting of the North Okanagan just north of Spallumcheen. Armstrong3Armstrong3

Armstrong4Armstrong4 Here is your typical small town general store. Note the spellings on the "General Store" sign.

As we explored the town, we discovered unique and enticing shops. Among them was a nice sandwich shop which was really a bakery. We could not walk out of it without a couple bags (small ones) of goodies. From there we were directed up the street to The Wild Oak Cafe.

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We could not resist splitting a freshly made sandwich and with our lattes. This place is now on our to-go-to list. We will definitely be returning to The Wild Oak Cafe. And is there a better way to top off the visit than with some fantastic chocolates, and not just ordinary chocolates, but Swiss chocolates?

Armstrong8Armstrong8 Just west of Armstrong, along the road through another rural area, we saw these whimsical examples of folk art erected on poles.

Armstrong9Armstrong9 Armstrong10Armstrong10 Armstrong11Armstrong11 Along another country road just out of Armstrong, we found six Bald eagles resting in the trees. This is a photo of one of them.

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Now back to skiing and wine!


February 7 - Okanagan Valley

February 07, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

OK1OK1Winter Carnival parade It has been more than three weeks ago that we arrived in Vernon, in the North Okanagan Valley.

This has been a winter with a lot of snow. This is not the norm here in town, but it has made for fantastic skiing conditions on Silver Star Mountain.

OK2OK2 A winter look in an orchard in Osoyoos, at the southern part of the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia.

OK3OK3 In the hills immediately south of Vernon.

OK4OK4 Though the Okanagan is known for its orchards and vineyards, ranching brought in the original settlers. There are still some ranches operating.

OK5OK5 This is a street in Vernon after one of the recent snowfalls.

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The main street of Vernon.

This is the week of the annual Vernon Winter Carnival. It kicked off with a parade last Saturday. Here are a few faces from that parade.

OK7OK7Winter Carnival parade

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OK10OK10Winter Carnival parade OK11OK11Winter Carnival parade OK12OK12Winter Carnival parade OK13OK13Winter Carnival parade


January 18 - The Road to Vernon

January 18, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

We left Sudbury on January 5, on our annual drive to Vernon, British Columbia. We arrived last Sunday, the 14th.

We stopped for the first night at Gallagher's in Blind River, only two hours from home. The next day we drove ten hours to Pewaukee, Wisconsin, where we visited Aunt Aili and the Yenches. Three days later, we were on the road again (with the refrains of Willie Nelson on the stereo). Westward on I-90 & 94, across southern Minnesota and into South Dakota.

Trip1Trip1 On the second day, a winter storm forced us into an early stop in Rapid City. But we were off the next morning. The landscape then became more scenic than the flat prairies.

Trip2Trip2 This National War Cemetery is located in Sturgis, South Dakota. Shortly thereafter, we crossed the state line into Wyoming.

Trip3Trip3 This is Interstate 90 near Buffalo, Wyoming. Between here and Sheridan, we spotted many hawks and eagles, and a couple herds of Pronghorn Antelope (which are not true antelopes).

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This group was not happy to have us stop nearby, so they showed us their less photogenic sides.

Trip4Trip4 We stopped for the next night in Billings, Montana. That following morning, the roads were mostly snow packed, until Livingston. After a morning of -14C temperatures, on Bridger Pass it was up to +6, and of course bare roads. From Butte, we headed north on I-15 up to Great Falls for the night. Again the next morning the roads were icy, but improved as we got further north.

Trip7Trip7 This is I-15 in the Marias Valley. The photo below shows the rolling hills on the north side of the river valley.

Trip8Trip8 We crossed into Alberta at Coutts, and drove via Lethbridge and Calgary to Canmore for our last night on the road. The next morning we arose early to catch the sunrise, but heavy cloud in the east thwarted that idea. This is Mount Rundle from Two Jack Lake in Banff early in the cloudy morning.

Trip9Trip9 Within the hour, the weather changed. Variable sun and cloud presented numerous photo opportunities, but few places to stop safely. We drove the Bow Valley Parkway toward Lake Louise. This image was made near the interchange toward Kootenay National Park.

Trip10Trip10 After our usual stop for coffee and goodies at Laggan's at Lake Louise Mall, I stopped when possible and made some images at the Alberta - British Columbia border, also where one leaves Banff National Park and enters Yoho National Park.

Trip11Trip11 Trip12Trip12 Trip13Trip13 This photo shows an area of a mountain side where there was a prescribed burn in Yoho National Park.

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The roads over Rogers Pass from Golden to Revelstoke were very wet, but happily snow-free. We arrived in Vernon late in the afternoon.

So far I've had three excellent days of skiing on Silver Star. That's why we're here.


January 1 - Happy New Year 2018

January 01, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

Can you believe it? How time flies. Is it really 2018?

We have been in a deep freeze for more than a week. But I can still wish everyone a warm greeting and good wishes.

Happy New Year 2018.

HNY2018HNY2018 We will begin our journey westward to the Okanagan, via Pewaukee, Wisconsin, this week. Hoping for good driving conditions and lots of snow - on Silver Star Mountain only.


December 24 - White Christmas

December 24, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

It is going to be a white Christmas, at least in Sudbury. Where we will be in Goderich, who knows.

A recent episode of brutally cold temperatures ensured that the snow would be staying, even though we experienced a short mild spell.

S_17_0484S_17_0484 Soft snow falling and a lack of wind have ensured a white Christmas.

The freezing temperatures that followed created interesting ice formations in the creeks.

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S_17_0524S_17_0524 To all, a Merry Christmas and a happy new year. Ecard Xmas 2017Ecard Xmas 2017